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With the start of spring, summer is just around the corner. With summer comes all the bugs and bug bites that we detest. Not only can bug bites be painful, but they also open the chance for infection. One of the ways to deal with these bug bites is the use of essential oils. Here is my “go-to” list.
Tea tree essential oil— Not only is tea tree oil good for acne and athlete’s foot, but it’s excellent at being an antiseptic and antibacterial, and in helping to reduce the swelling. Things we need once we have been bitten by bugs.
Lavender essential oil— Not only used for its soothing effects, but also works great as an analgesic, which not only helps to sooth your spirit but also helps and relieves the pain. This oil works not only on the skin, but inhalation has proven to be an effective pain migrator. Inhale from the bottle or use an essential oil diffuser.
Camphor essential oil— It too has antiseptic, anesthetic and anti-inflammatory, but it’s also an insecticide. One word of caution: if the bite burns or still, avoid camphor oil.
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Rosemary essential oil— Another insecticide that helps with its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties.
Lemongrass essential oil— This is both an antimicrobial and an anti-inflammatory. Two things to help fight the sting of the bite and the chance for infection.
Basil essential oil— A natural antimicrobial that helps in preventing infections. Also, contains antioxidants.
To use any of these essential oils, apply directly to the bite (make sure to dilute with a carrier oil first). You can apply them up to three times daily to help heal the bite. They can be mixed into another lotion (such as calamine). You can mix the oils into a mixture of beeswax or coconut oil to make a soothing ointment. Or, create a spray. Mix one ounce of water with three drops of essential oil and three drops of a carrier oil. Put into a spray bottle. Keeping the bottle in the refrigerator even offers that cooling feeling. If you’re covered with bites, a soothing bath might be the answer. Simply add the essential oil (20-30 drops) and soak yourself.
Create your own balm.
This is easy to take with you, and once you put it on, it stays on.
- Balm containers (a good size is from a 1-2 ounces)
- Double Boiler
- 3 tablespoons beeswax
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 3 teaspoons sweet almond oil (or other carrier oil)
- 8-10 drops of essential oil, or combination of essential oils.
- Start the water boiling in the bottom part of the double boiler (on medium). Add the wax to the top. Stir constantly and make sure you don’t burn the wax. Take your time with this step.
- Once the beeswax is melted and clear, add the coconut oil. (If this has solidified, warm in a bowl of lukewarm water). Add the sweet almond oil and continue to stir.
- Add your selected essential oils, making sure to mix thoroughly.
- Fill your containers (leaving a small area at the top). Allow this to cool and solidify. Use as needed.
Avoid the following oils when treating bug bites:
About American College of Healthcare Sciences
Founded in 1978, ACHS.edu is a Portland, Ore.-based, accredited college offering online, on-campus, and study abroad integrative health education. With undergraduate and graduate degrees, diplomas, certificates, and continuing education units in integrative health, ACHS makes holistic health and wellness education accessible to a diverse community, including healthcare professionals, military students, stay-at-home parents, and lifelong learners. Specializations include aromatherapy, herbal medicine, holistic nutrition, and integrative health. ACHS is a Certified B Corporation® and was named two of 100 Best Green Workplaces in Oregon 2017 by Oregon Business magazine. ACHS is also accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), which is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). In response to our commitment to service members, veterans and military spouses, ACHS has been designated as one of the top 16% of military-friendly institutions in the U.S. for nine years in a row. For more information visit achs.edu.