Thursday Tips, July 26 – Bug Bite Itch Relief

It’s that time of year.

The time when mosquitoes and other pesky creatures bite and cause days of irritating itching that leads to days of incessant scratching. When I grew out of my childhood, I briefly entertained the idea that maybe I’d be more disciplined about not scratching the inevitable bites that come with being outside in the summer. I was wrong, very wrong.

The other day, I got four bites in the span of a few hours. I was inside so, unless there was a mosquito or a dozen in my house, they may not have been mosquito bites. They sure itched like mosquito bites. And I scratched them just as if they were. Two of them, anyway. My success rate was 50/50 because two faded quickly but the two on the back of me leg, just where they come in contact with whatever I sat on and the spot my shorts reached to, were too itchy to resist. I tried hydrocortisone cream but woke up during the night scratching. Don’t you hate that?

Anyway, I vaguely remembered my mother telling me she’d read that witch hazel mixed with baking soda did something for bug bites but I couldn’t remember if it she said it only worked right after you got bit or later, for the itch. She said she thought it was best right after the bite.

But I was desperate. So I mixed a little baking soda and a couple drops of witch hazel on a spoon and put it on my leg. The relief was pretty much instant. I had to reapply it two more times, but it was so worth it. I can’t even see the bites today.

The only drawback? Trying not to get backing soda on everything I sat on. It does stay white for a while but eventually flakes off and disappears. But, after all, baking soda won’t stain anything.

Witch hazel and baking soda – my new anti-itch cream.

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