It’s that time of year when moms start to worry about making sure their precious littles are sufficiently protected from the bugs of summer. If your kids are anything like mine they don’t want to play outside in the heat of the day, when the bugs are few and far between, and who could blame them?
When the sun starts to fade and the temperature dips though they get a second wind and they hit the door running. Unfortunately the bugs (ie mosquitoes) have the same idea. My kids have already come inside with fresh bugs bites only to spend the remainder of the evening itching up a storm. During the summer months lots of families can be found several evenings a week attending some sort of outdoor event so bugs become a problem.
First we need to set up a good offense and send everyone outside with some protection…a bug barrier. A super easy and natural way to repel bugs is to make an essential oil spray. Just put some clove, basil, juniper, pine, or cedar oils inside a carrier oil like Jojoba or grain alcohol and spray as needed. Even easier and cheaper than that is to use garlic juice and water and spray as needed. You can also buy a more natural product if you don’t want a DIY product. We like and use the Badger Anti-Bug Twist-Up Stick. You put it on lightly or thick and it smells really nice without being at all greasy. No harmful DEET!
You can also get proactive by planting strategically around your house with plants that the bugs don’t like. Rosemary, basil, catnip, and lemon balm are a few plants you can grow that have wonderful insect-repelling qualities
What do you do though when you or the kiddos get bit or stung by ants, bees, mosquitoes and other buggy creatures despite your best efforts? Here are some…
Natural Ways to Soothe and Heal Bug Bites and Stings
Aloe Vera – Cut a small section of your plant (seriously every family needs to have at least one Aloe Vera plant in their home) and rub on, allowing the juices to dry and soothe.
Apple Cider Vinegar – Apply a few drops of ACV directly and allow to dry. Repeat as needed. You can also add a couple cups to your bath water for a soak.
Dry Soap – Rub dry bar soap on the wound to help with itch. I like Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint.
Onion – Take a thin slice of onion and apply directly to the bite/sting. Great for bee stings!
Baking Soda Paste – Mix some baking soda with water to form a paste and apply as needed to soothe and help with itchiness.
Toothpaste – Rub on a bit of a natural toothpaste brand and allow to dry. I haven’t tried it yet but I think Earthpaste Peppermint would work really well for this since it has natural clay in it and peppermint is soothing and cooling.
Lavender Oil – A few drops applied directly to the wound.
Local Raw Honey – This is soothing and it has antimicrobial properties which is awesome for when dirty little fingernails are scratching and digging, thus opening the door for infection. Apply directly to the bite.
Banana Peel – Rub the inside of a banana peel on the wound. Very effective but usually needs to be repeated hourly.
Tea Bags – After brewing up a batch of tea use the bag to soothe any bug bites.
Crushed/Chewed Leaves – Crush up or chew up some basil or plantain leaves until they are soggy. Apply directly to the bite/sting.
Lemon/Lime Slices – Apply directly.
Do you have a natural bug bite remedy that works well for you?