How Long Until Bed Bug Bites Stop Itching

How Long do Bed Bug Bites Last – When Will They Heal

People who have suffered from bed bug bites know how painful and itchy these can be. Naturally, the question foremost on their minds is how to heal the bed bug bites faster? In this guide, we shall study a few methods of preventing, treating and healing bed bug bites quickly. We will also study a few efficient ways of getting rid of the bed bugs to prevent further bites.

How long do bed bug bites last and what are the symptoms?

Bed bug bites typically heal within a week to 10 days, depending on how sensitive one is to them. In fact; some lucky people may have been bitten by these pests, but they do not experience any symptoms at all! Those that are hypersensitive to most insect bites may experience following symptoms:

  1. Itchy skin, red welts or bumps
  2. Rash in the form of clusters
  3. Bite marks that are straight or grouped together typically under the edge of tight fitting clothing on arms and legs or also on the neck, back or other exposed parts of the body.

An indication of bed bug infestation is the presence of their discarded exoskeletons and fecal matter in the form of rust colored stains on bedding and mattresses. An offensive almond like smell may also be present in some cases.

Preventing bed bugs

Everyone deserves a good night’s rest in order to function properly the next morning. Hence, the last thing you’d want is to awaken from bed bug bites. Preventing bed bugs is the best solution for this problem. This can be done as follows:

  1. Vacuuming the carpets regularly
  2. Never picking up second hand furniture, bedding or discarded mattresses from the curbside.
  3. Inspecting rooms thoroughly for signs of bed bugs when staying in hotels. As stated above, you will notice red stains and discarded skin on beds and mattresses, especially around the corners of the bedding.

If you suspect an infestation at home, you must promptly call a professional pest control company to handle it immediately. For very large infestations too, it is best to enlist the services of professionals in order to make sure that the eggs, larvae and adult bed bugs are completely eliminated. Failure to do so will lead to re-infestation. It is also important to discard infested items carefully by sealing them in bags which have been pretreated with flea powders or other bed bug repellents.

Treating bed bug bites

Bed bug bites must not be ignored. Scratching the site of bite can even lead to secondary skin infections which are harder to treat.

  • See a doctor to identify if the rash is from bed bug bites. There are many skin conditions or allergic reactions to products which can sometimes produce similar rashes.
  • To prevent infections, apply benzoly peroxide or rubbing alcohol on the rash.
  • An effective home remedy for soothing the pain and itchiness from bed bug bites is applying a mixture of baking soda and water directly on the rash. (Leave the paste on the rash for at least half an hour and then wash it off.)
  • Many natural soothing lotions and creams containing Calendula, aloe vera etc can also give relief from pain, swelling and itching.

It is important to get rid of bed bugs from home. To do this effectively:

  • Sprinkle some diatomaceous earth powder (food grade) liberally at the feet of the beds and under the bedroom furniture etc. The diatomaceous earth kills bed bugs by shredding their insides and dehydrating them.
  • Wash the bedding and linen in very hot water to kill eggs and larvae.

These precautions will help prevent further bed bug bites. If in case you are not able to deal with the infestation, you must call a professional pest control agency to do the same.

Related Posts

  • Bed Bug Bites vs. Body Lice Bites: How To Tell the… Bite marks on the body are the first sign of…
  • Bed Bug Bites vs Spider Bites – What is the Difference? Insect bites of various kinds are a common reason behind…
  • Do I have Dust Mite Bites or Bed Bug Bites? Bed bugs and dust mites belong to different groups of…

Got bed bugs?Here are 10 products that can help you get rid of and prevent them.

How to Stop Bed Bug Bites from Itching – Quick Solution

With warmer weather come bugs, prominent among which are bed bugs. Many a family vacation has been spoilt by sleeping in bed bug infested hotels. Bed bug bites are extremely itchy and can ruin a good night’s sleep. Children and babies tend to get irritable and cranky due to such bites and scratching them can also lead to secondary skin infections.

Therefore, we are compiling a list of quick healing remedies that can help relieve itchiness caused by bed bug bites. These are proven to quickly stop bed bug bites from itching for fast relief from pain and inflammation.

Proven home remedies to stop bed bug bites from itching

  • Ice- Apply ice immediately to the bitten area to stop bed bug bites from itching. In absence of ice, apply cold water or frozen vegetable packets to the skin for a few minutes until the itchiness is reduced.
  • Heat- Heat is another proven home remedy. Many a victim of bed bug bites has obtained relief by applying heat from a hair dryer to the bite site. Alternatively, take a hot shower and pat dry the bitten area with a soft cloth for immediate relief from pain and inflammation.
  • Toothpaste- Toothpaste is readily available at home and is a handy remedy to stop bed bug bites from itching quickly and effectively. Simply apply a generous portion on the bite; the menthol and baking soda in the toothpaste helps relieve itching and burning.
  • Baking soda- Make a paste of baking soda with some water. Apply it to the skin to immediately stop bed bug bites from itching.
  • Oatmeal- Colloidal oatmeal has plethora of skin benefits primary amongst which is relieving irritation resulting from insect bites. Make a paste of oats and water and apply it on the arms, legs, feet, and anywhere else where bed bugs have left their bite marks on the skin.
  • If you are outdoors camping and have none of the above remedies to stop bed bug bites from itching quickly, simply collect some mud and make it into a paste with water. Apply this paste to stop bed bug bites from itching.
  • Aloe Vera plant- If you have an aloe vera plant handy nearby, simply cut open the leaf, extract its gel and apply it all over the skin to stop the itch.

Over the counter remedies to stop bed bug bites from itching

When bed bugs bite, their saliva mixes with our blood which then releases histamine to counter the allergic substance in the saliva’s protein. This histamine is what causes the itching in the first place. Hence an antihistamine must be taken to counter itchiness.

  • Oral Anti Histamine- Benadryl or any other antihistamine tablet taken orally can give immediate relief from itching.
  • Anti-itch creams- Hydrocortisone creams, Benadryl spray/ cream or calamine lotion as well as Cortizone 10 etc can be applied to stop bed bug bites from itching.
  • Take rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball and apply it liberally all over the bites for quick relief from itching.

We hope these home and store bought remedies will help you quickly stop bed bug bites from itching for fast relief from pain and inflammation.

Related Posts

  • Protect Your Bed from Bed Bugs and Stop Bed Bug Bites It always starts with an itch and leads on to…
  • The Ultimate Bed Bugs Solution Have you been trying to get rid of bedbugs for…
  • Bed Bug Bites vs. Body Lice Bites: How To Tell the… Bite marks on the body are the first sign of…

Got bed bugs?Here are 10 products that can help you get rid of and prevent them.

How to Stop Itching From Bed Bug Bites? (Bed Bug Bite Treatment)

After writing how to get rid of roaches?, how to get rid of fruit flies?, how to get rid of ants?, how to get rid of fleas?, and home remedies to get rid of bed bugs naturally, we are now writing how to stop itching from bed bug bites. Bed bug bites is not a serious skin problem and should not cause any alarm. Bed bug bites may go even without treatment. However, the effect of the bite can be very itchy. The treatment is not necessarily for the bites, but for the symptoms and complications that go with. The following are what you can use for bed bug bites treatment:

(A) Best Home Remedies to Stop Itching From Bed Bug Bites (Bed Bug Bite Treatment):

1.) Apply The Ice Pack

This is one of the best remedies to treat bed bugs bites fast and naturally at home. The cold temperature from ice can aid frozen the nerve endings, thus reducing the itching sensation caused due to bed bug bites. It will also help soothe the swelling. To try this method, cover a few ice cubes in a thin washcloth or towel. Now, place it in the bitten area. Keep it for 10 -15 mins. Repeat this process 2-3 times a day to see the best results.

2.) Use The Baking Soda Paste

This is one of the beneficial remedies to cure bed bugs bites fast at home. Baking soda also referred as sodium bicarbonate. It helps counterbalance acidic chemicals that help to stop itching from a bed bug bite. Baking soda is also an anti-inflammatory agent, it also helps diminish redness and swelling. To try this remedy, mix 1 tsp of baking soda and 3 tsp of water. Mix the solution well. Apply this solution directly on the affected area. Keep it on for 10 minutes before you wash it off. Do this process for 2 times a day to get better results.

3.) Lemon Juice to Prevent Bed Bug Bites

Lemon acts as a natural astringent, it helps dry out bite rashes caused by bed bug bites. It helps reduce itching. Moreover, its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties help decrease swelling and redness as well as stop infection. To use this method, soak a cotton ball in lemon juice. Apply it on the affected area. Let it dry, then wash the affected area. Do this process for a few times a day to get better results.

Note: Lemon juice may make your skin vulnerable to sunburn. Do not move out in the sun for a few hours after using the lemon juice.

4.) Take Help From Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is a liquid astringent. It is also helpful to treat bed bugs bite fast at home. You can purchase one from a drug store. Mostly used as a facial cleaner, it can also help soothe itching caused due to bed bug bites because it contains tannins that have a mild pain killing properties. To try this remedy, dip a cotton ball in witch hazel. Place it directly on the bite area. Leave it for 10 mins then rinse it using normal water. Do this process as per your requirement.

5.) Use The Aloe Vera Gel

The moist aloe vera gel is soothing for your skin. The active compounds and amino acids in aloe vera gel help ease burning and itching caused by bed bug and other insect bites. It also helps curing the skin by keeping it conditioned. To use this method, extract the aloe vera gel and directly apply it on the affected area. Apply this method 2-3 times a day to get better results. This helps you treat bed bugs bites fast and naturally at home.

6.) Apply The Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is another helpful remedy to get rid of bed bug bites at home fast and naturally. It helps ease burning and itching, thanks to its acetic acid and anti-inflammatory properties. If apple cider vinegar is not handy, you can also use white vinegar. To try this remedy, you need 2 tsp of unfiltered apple cider vinegar. Apply this ACV on the affected area. If its itching, then dilute apple cider vinegar by adding few drops of water. Use this process for 2-3 times a day for better results faster. Read apple cider vinegar uses.

7.) Make Oatmeal Paste For Bites

Due to its anti-inflammatory and soothing properties, it is an effective solution for the treatment of bed bug bites. This is an excellent solution to lessen skin itching and irritation caused by bed bug bites and other insect bites as well as skin problems like psoriasis and eczema. To try this method, mix some water to the 2 tsp of oatmeal to make a paste. Apply this paste on the bite area. Keep it on for about 15 minutes before washing it off. Repeat this process for a few times for a few days. This is one of the best remedies to treat bed bugs bites naturally at home.

8.) Apply The White Toothpaste

Toothpaste is another useful and effective remedy for bed bug bites. It consists of cooling menthol that helps diminish the burning and itching feelings. Use a white toothpaste, not a gel based, for this method. Apply a little white toothpaste on the bite area. Keep it for 10-15 minutes, then wash it off. Repeat this method for 2 times a day to get better results.

9.) Use The Tea Bags

Moist tea bags can also help fight the swelling and itching caused by bed bug bites and other insect bites. They consist of mild anesthetic and astringent properties. To use this method, cool a wet or used tea bag in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Place it over the affected area for about 15 minutes. Repeat this method for 2-3 times a day to get relief from the pain and irritation. This is one of the beneficial home remedies to get rid of bed bugs bites at home fast and naturally.

10.) Cucumber Will Help For Bites

Cucumber consists of soothing properties that helps ease the inflammation and redness of the bed bug bites. To use this method, take a cucumber and cut into thin slices. Place it over the affected area for 10 mins to relieve from swelling and itching caused by bed bug bites. As they consist of caffeic acid and vitamin C that offer anti-inflammatory benefits to cure bed bites and other skin issues.

11.) Use The Marshmallow Roots Powder

It is also an outstanding herbal remedy to treat bed bug bites naturally. To try this method, just grind the marshmallow roots to form a powder. Now, mix some amount of water to this powder to make a paste. It will help reduce the itching and redness of the skin will disappear after a while.

12.) Apply Tea Tree Oil

It is one of the most tried and trusted bed bugs bite remedies as it has antiseptic and anti-fungal properties. Apply and massage with diluted tea tree oil on the skin, 2-3 times a day to get soothing effects from bed bugs bites fast and naturally at home.

(B) Ways to Stop Itching From Bed Bug Bites (Bed Bug Bite Treatment):

1.) Anti-itch Topical Bed Bug Bite Treatment

There are people who are not bothered at all by the bed bug bite. Some are even clueless that they are bitten by these parasites. However, there are some who feel terrible because of the itchy bite. It is so bothersome that they have to absent themselves from work or school because of it. Anti-itch topical cream is the best treatment for this problem. When applied, the itch will be lessened until it totally goes away. It is an OTC product, but it is still best to see the doctor before using one. The doctor will tell which brand suits your condition well for bed bugs treatment.

2.) Antihistamine for Bed Bug Bite Treatment

There are people whose skin swell because of the bed bug bite. The bite will appear red and may be itchy. There is an allergic reaction if the skin swells because of the bite. To address this, antihistamine is usually prescribed for bed bug bites treatment. This product treats the itch associated with bed bug bites. Similarly, antihistamines lessen the swelling and redness of the skin caused by bed bug bite. This product can be bought over-the-counter. You have to consult with the doctor first to know which brand is the best for your problem.

3.) Hydrocortisone for Bed Bug Bite Treatment

Bed bug bite is not really a serious matter. It does not cause any health problem at all. However, the skin gets inflamed because of it. The redness and swelling of the skin is due to inflammation. Hydrocortisone is usually given to patients who suffer from it. It is a mild steroid-based drug used to treat skin problems. It is also effective in treating itch, redness, and swelling. This is an OTC drug, but it still wise to go to the doctor first. You have to ask if hydrocortisone is the best topical treatment for your bed bug bite.

4.) Antibiotic Tablets for Bed Bug Bite Treatment

There are cases where bed bug bites become worse due to complications. For instance, you scratch the bite and the skin gets infected. In this case, the simple bite becomes worse due to bacteria. To fight the infection, doctors usually prescribe antibiotic tablets. This treatment will stop the infection and will kill the bacteria that caused it. Antibiotic tablets cannot be bought over-the counter. You need a doctor’s prescription to have it.

5.) Heat Treatment for Bed Bug Bites (Home Treatment)

You may also use home treatments for bed bug bites. If you do not want to apply topical creams, use heat treatment instead. The heat can instantly bring relief to itch and redness. Apply heated cloth to the affected areas to fade the itch. Do several times until the itch totally goes away. Heat treatment can also lessen the swelling and redness of the skin.

How Long do Bed Bug Bites Last, Take to Appear, Go Away & Heal

A bite from a bed bug can be quite irritating and no one would enjoy its effect for even a micro-second. Find how long it takes to appear and the duration it lasts before it goes away or heals.

How Long do they Last on Human Skin?

As soon as you identify that the bites on your skin are bed bug bites, the next question will be how long the bites will last. Having bug bites on open areas of your body such as the face and arms can be both irritating and embarrassing.

National Health Service doctors state that bed bug bites last for a few days. This however varies from one person to another. As explained by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), symptoms that come as a result of bug bites may last for about14 days or 2 weeks.

The factors that will determine the duration

Sensitivity of the skin

If you have a very sensitive skin, you may have the bed bug bites last longer on your skin. Bed bug bites on a sensitive skin heal after approximately ten days.

To determine whether your skin is hypersensitive, you should look out for certain symptoms after the bite. They include; extreme itchiness, red bumps, clustered rashes, and bite marks.

If your skin is very sensitive to insect bites, you will most likely get an allergic reaction. In such a case, your period of healing will be way longer.

Your skin takes a while to overcome the reaction. The more sensitive your skin is, the longer you will take to heal and the more likely you develop complications.

Presence of infection

According to the Center for Disease Control and prevention, when bed bug bites become infected, they last longer on the skin.

You are likely to get infections if you scratch the bed bug bites with dirty fingernails or if you expose the bites to a dirty environment.

CDC further confirms that too much scratching causes bacteria to get into the red bump leading to an infection.

Immune system

If you have a weak immune system, your body finds it hard to fight something as minor as a bed bug bite. People with a strong immune system were found to heal from the bites sooner than those with a weaker system.

History of exposure to bed bugs

If you have been bitten by bed bugs severally in the past, you may not even realize it when they bite you. Some people become resistant to bed bug bites.

It is however not the case if the bed bugs bite you for the first time. When bitten for the first time, the bed bug bites are likely to last for long.

Treatment option

If you try available remedies for bed bug bites as soon as you notice the first symptoms, you shorten the length of time the bites take to heal.

Aloe vera and green tea bags are some of the available home remedies. If you choose to let the bites go away on their own, they may last a little longer.

How long do they do take to appear or show up?

How long it takes for bed bug bites to appear varies from one person to another.

For some people, the bites may appear the morning following the night they are bitten.

For others, however, it may take up to two weeks before the bed bug bites appear.

If the bites by the bed bugs were severe, you are likely to as well have the bites show up sooner than expected.

Moreover, people who have been bitten by bed bugs to the level of not reacting to them may not show any signs at all. If your skin is very sensitive, the bites may show up very soon on your skin.

Tips to make the Bites Go Away and Heal Faster

Since bed bug bites can be very irritating, you may need to find ways of getting rid of them as soon as possible. Below are tips that will help you to eliminate bed bug bites faster;

Cold Compress

Applycold compress. On eMedicalHealth, Dr. Patrick Davis explains that cold compress is very helpful when applied on an insect bite. Bug bites are not an exception. It helps reduce not only the swelling but it also gives you a relief from any itching and pain.

Tea Bugs & Chamomile

You can alsouse tea bagsto treat the bug bites. TheJournal of Pharmacognosy and phytochemistryadvises that green and black tea bags are the best since they have tannins which act as astringents. This is the property responsible for reducing itching and inflammation which comes with bug bites.

Research further shows thatchamomilehas anti-inflammatory effects which make it similar to hydrocortisone creams.

Honey

Honeyis yet another remedy that has been found to reduce how long the bed bugs last. Honey is a natural antibiotic and is very helpful in case your bed bug bites become infected.

Since you may not realize when your bites are becoming infected, it is best if you apply honey even before you can note any infection.

Aloe vera

Apply Aloe veraon the skin with bed bug bites as soon as you see them. Aloe vera nourishes the skin and as such promotes healing.

Avoid Scratching

You are advised toavoid scratching your skin. Even if the bites cause a lot of itchiness on the skin, do not respond. Scratching the bites exposes the skin to bacterial infection.

As discussed earlier, when the bed bug bite marks are infected, it takes a very long time before the bites heal. You can try home remedies that relief itchiness.

Seek Treatment from a Doctor

If your bed bug bites areinfected, you are advised to see the doctor for treatment. Remember, infected bed bugs take longer to heal than those not infected. This explains why you need to seek necessary medical attention so as to avoid such possible delays in healing.

Keep the area with the bed bug bites veryneat. Ensuring no dirt comes into contact with it whatsoever. This is meant to reduce the chances of infections.

To ensure effectiveness of any of the above home remedies, apply them as soon as you realize the first signs that you were bitten by bed bugs.

Clean up your room and find an appropriate treatment for the bed bugs. If the bed bugs bite you yet another time, they worsen the current condition of the first bites.

Do not allow the bed bugs to bite you again, find a way to eliminate them. More and more bites mean you will take a longer time to heal.

How to Treat a Bed Bug Rash

How Does an Individual Get a Bed Bug Bite Rash?

Bed bugs commonly infest summer cabins, especially at camps, hiking trail shelters and parks. Many times, when they are found in an urban home they can be traced back to a visit to one of these facilities.

These parasites are attracted to warmth, which is why they bite us as we sleep. They are also attracted to carbon dioxide, which is what is exhaled by oxygen breathing species.

They reside in dark areas and crevices near the host. Their only food is the blood they obtain from the host. Hosts for this bug are many different species of vertebrates including canaries, poultry, guinea pigs, cats, dogs, mice, bats and unfortunately, man.

How They Feed

These bugs feed on the host while the host sleeps, generally just before dawn. They will usually not be seen during the daylight hours unless the infestation is severe.

This bug will secure itself to the host’s skin using its claws and then inserts it ‘beak’ into the skin of the host. The ‘beak’ consists of two tubes (stylets); one sucks up the host’s blood while the other injects saliva (venom) in the wound.

This saliva assists in preventing the host’s blood from coagulating to keep it flowing. It also has an anesthetic to numb the feeding area on the host. This saliva is what causes the itching sensation on the host’s skin.

Have Bed Bug Problems?

Feeding Based on Age

Nymphs (adolescents) feed for approximately three minutes while an adult may continue to feed on the blood of the host for ten to fifteen minutes.

Amazingly, they can survive 18 months without any oxygen and as much as a year without any blood. The bites cause burning, itching and swelling. The degree of symptoms depends upon the host’s susceptibility.

How Common are These Rashes?

The National Pest Management Association has stated that prior to the year 2000, as few as 25% of the pest control companies in the United States had encountered an infestation of these nasty bugs. Currently that number has risen to 95%.

At this point in time 76% of the United States pest control professionals think that this bug is the most difficult pest to eradicate.

Companies that previously received one or two calls per year are now reporting that they receive one or two calls weekly.

Why has the Infestation Returned?

There are various factors that are contributing to the resurgence in the United States. Citizens are frequently traveling to foreign areas that are infested.

Second-hand furniture and furnishings have become extremely popular. Populations have increased their resistance to the various pesticides. Control has been neglected by the pest control industry since the ‘40s.

What Does a Typical Bite Rash Look Like?

When these bugs bite an individual, they can develop a rash. These rashes have the ability to cause an extremely irritating itching sensation. The actual rash is not considered to be detrimental to one’s health.

Many times a rash is mistaken for bites that are caused by insects commonly found in a household. These insects include fleas, lice, ants and mosquitoes. The truth is that the majority of individuals are not aware they have been fed on by these parasites. Many times, they assume the rash is just a skin allergy.

However, once you are aware of what to look for, it is very easily recognizable.

One of the first signs is numerous tiny or raised skin bumps. These bumps will always be in a row or cl ustered pattern. This is because they generally feed more than one time at the same location.

Other Signs to Watch Out For

The next sign is that the bites will occur nightly while sleeping and the rashes will increase daily. These rashes will usually be located on the legs, arms, neck, face and back, which are the most common areas. The reason these places are the most common sites is because these areas are usually exposed during the night. Exposed areas of the host are what they prefer.

For a lot of individuals these tiny red bumps will generally manifest hours or even days after the bite. These bumps will then begin to itch. If these bumps are scratched, the area may become inflamed because of a severe infection.

The bites or welts are misdiagnosed by many dermatologists as bites from fleas or even scabies. Only around half of the populace notices the very first bite and makes the correlation to these bloodsucking bugs.

Many reactions to bites are delayed for approximately ten days. People over the age of 65 either react less or are not usually bitten. In one survey, 42% of individuals over 65 years reported no bites or reactions even though there was an ongoing presence.

Personality

These bugs are very shy and cautious. During the night, they are attracted to the odors and warmth of the closest human being. Believe it or not, they are able to feed for ten minutes or longer non-stop!

One will consume as much as six times its body weight in blood. However, usually the individual is unaware that they are being bitten. Once they have completed feeding, they look extremely bloated and have even been characterized as animated blood drops.

Not only can bites create a rash or welts, they also have the ability to spread disease organisms that bring on digestive and nervous disorders. Allergic reactions, particularly in more sensitive individuals can occur. The have been known to carry contributory agents for plague, anthrax, tularemia, typhus, relapsing fever and yellow fever.

They have been known to CARRY these diseases; at this point in time, there is NO PROOF that they actually TRANSMIT them. Children residing in homes that are extremely bug-ridden tend to become pale and listless.

How Long Does a Bite Rash Last?

Usually, the rash will appear several hours after the actual bite has occurred. In some cases, however, the rash may not appear for days. The appearance of the rash is dependent upon the individual’s allergic reaction to the bites. For the most part, the rash will last just a few days and then begins to fade slowly.

Unfortunately, the bite rash does have the ability to last a lot longer if the individual has a more intense allergic reaction to the bites. Some individuals will not have any reaction whatsoever, while others who have more sensitivity to allergies may develop rashes that cause extreme itching as they are continuously bitten nightly.

Many times medical attention will be necessary for these individuals to eliminate the rash completely.

How Can a Bite Rash be Treated?

The swelling and redness that is associated with a bite rash does not clear very easily. However, the itching and discomfort can easily be treated with several remedies including natural remedies and medications.

Oral antihistamines and steroid creams can be used in treatment regime. These medications will help to ease the itching that is associated with the rash.

It is important to remember not to scratch the bites. Scratching the bites ONLY MAKES THEM ITCH MORE and does have the ability to cause a secondary skin infection.

Names of Medications Used for the Treatment

Cortaid

There are topical steroid creams that are applied directly to the affected area to eliminate the itching sensation. One of these creams is hydrocortisone. Hydrocortisone is available with or without a prescription. The lower strength creams may be purchased over-the-counter.

However, if the low dose cream does not work, you may need to obtain a prescription from your physician to purchase a stronger dose.

Creams Containing Dephendrydramine & Pramoxine

The optimal creams contain a mixture of pramoxine to assist with the tenderness and pain and diphendrydramine to eliminate the itching associated with the rash.

Creams & Lotions Containing Benzyl Alcohol

Lotions and creams containing benzyl alcohol may also be used to treat both the symptoms of itching and pain. These lotions and creams can be extremely effective in eliminating the itch to resolve the bite rash rather quickly.

Calamine Lotion

The use of Calamine Lotion will assist in protecting the skin while it heals. It also speeds the drying of the rash, which facilitates a quicker healing process.

Alka-Seltzer

If the individual is NOT allergic to aspirin, a cotton ball can be dipped into an Alka-Seltzer solution and then rubbed onto the bite rash to assist in clearing it up quicker.

Prednisone

Oral steroids are also useful in treating the itching. One of these steroids is called Prednisone and a prescription must be obtained from a physician to purchase this product. It is not an over-the counter medication.

Benadryl

Oral antihistamines can be very effective in relieving the itching sensation. One of these antihistamines is called Benadryl; however, these medications tend to cause drowsiness.

Therefore, this kind of medication is better used prior to retiring. It is not necessary to obtain a prescription from a doctor to purchase this medication. It is an over-the-counter product available at your local pharmacy.

Zyrtec & Claritin

There are some oral antihistamines that may be taken during the daytime and are not prone to cause drowsiness. A couple of these medications are Claritin and Zyrtec. It is not necessary to obtain a prescription for these medications either. Both are available over-the-counter at your local pharmacy.

Oral Antibiotic or an Antibiotic Ointment

If a bacterial infection occurs on the skin, a health-care provider/physician may prescribe an oral antibiotic or antibiotic ointment to treat the skin infection.

Corticosteroids, Antihistamines or Epinephrine Injections

Should an individual be suffering with a systemic allergic reaction, a physician can administer antihistamines, corticosteroids or epinephrine to the individual. *It is important to note that this condition is extremely rare.

Natural Remedies to Consider

Apply lukewarm water above 120°F or 50°C to the area that has been bitten as soon as possible. This has been known to relieve some of the symptoms.

Just by washing the rash regularly with the use of antibacterial soap helps to keep the bacteria from growing on the rash and causing an infection.

Applying a mixture of baking soda and salt to the affected areas will help to relieve inflammation.

Soaking in a lukewarm bath after adding powdered oatmeal will provide some relief from the itching sensation and reduce inflammation. A paste can be made out of the powdered oatmeal and applied to the areas affected.

A paste can be made from water and baking soda. Rub this paste on the area infected with the rash. Let the paste dry and then peel it off. This should help relieve some of the itching.

Lemon juice or Witch Hazel may be applied directly on the bites.

Home Treatment Suggestion Regimen

Wash the affected area with hot water and soap. Apply anesthetic lotion or cream liberally. To avoid welting and swelling apply ice to the affected areas.

Repeat the regimen every 6 to 8 hours until the symptoms subside.

When to Seek Medical Attention

If unsure what is actually causing the skin lesions, call a health-care provider or a physician.

If any signs that indicate a secondary infection are present, it is time to call the doctor. *Many times this secondary infection is caused by scratching of the bites/rash.

It is rare, but there have been cases of systemic allergic reactions, meaning affecting the body throughout. It is necessary to seek medical attention if this condition occurs.

Following-up with the health-care provider or physician could be necessary following a systemic allergic reaction. The health-care provider or physician may want to monitor your progress especially if a secondary skin infection had developed.

Preparing to See the Health-Care Provider/Physician

Prepare a List

Write down a very detailed description of all your symptoms.

Provide history related to any recent travel, especially international travel. Include information concerning any recent motel or hotel stays.

All the supplements and drugs you have taken including the dosage, frequency and when the last time was that you took these medications or supplements.

The health-care provider or physician will examine the areas that have been bitten.

The Life Cycle

Each female will lay from one to five eggs every day. That means that each female can lay anywhere from 200 to 500 eggs in her lifetime. These eggs are yellow/white and elongated. They are approximately 1/25” in length and just slightly curved.

Each batch of eggs is fastened on rough surfaces with cement after being laid in clusters. This process occurs several times daily in protected places such as the ceiling, floor crevices and furniture cracks. These are just a few places they deposit their eggs.

Nearly several hundred could be deposited in a period of just two months. A female will not continue to lay eggs after 11 days if she does not feed.

When Do the Eggs Hatch?

The eggs will hatch sometime between one to three weeks. The length of time prior to the hatching of the eggs will depend on the temperature where the eggs were deposited. In the warmer weather, the incubation time will be shortened. Once the eggs hatch, it is now considered to be a nymph.

Nymphs are tiny and have no color upon hatching. They have five stages. The nymph has to molt or instar five times and feed on a full meal of blood prior to proceeding to the next stage of its metamorphosis. The amount of the host’s blood that is taken at each of these 5 meals is from 2 ½ to 6 times the nymph’s original weight.

This period can continue for several weeks when the conditions are favorable or up to an entire year when there are no hosts to feed on and the temperatures are low. The nymph looks similar to an adult, only smaller and pale yellow, straw colored or white prior to feeding.

Color Changes

Once the nymph has fed, it will turn purple or red. A nymph can survive for nearly 2 months without feeding on a host. A nymph is approximately the size of the letter ‘R’ in the word ‘liberty’ that is on a penny.

The nymph will undergo a gradual and simple metamorphosis and eventually become an adult. Once they reach adulthood it will be shiny and brown.

Very soon, after becoming an adult, they mate and the cycle will begin again. The adults are about as big as Lincoln’s head on the penny. An adult prefer humans as their host.

Where to Look

It is important to remember that they have a very flat body that allows it to hide almost anywhere. During the initial onset of the infestation, they are only visible around the tufts and seams of the mattress. As the infestation grows, these bugs spread out and inhabit larger and larger areas. Generally they prefer rough surfaces like wood or paper for their harborages.

These parasites can be found in a multitude of places throughout the home. However, they will not usually stray very far from their host; therefore, the bedroom would be a good place to start the search. It is usually the center of the infestation.

Favorite Hiding Spots

Some of the places they reside include dark and tight cracks in the home, in mattress seams, under buttons, in holes, inside walls, upholstered furniture ticking and seams, in or on bedside furniture, dressers, electrical outlets, wall boards, window and door frames, behind baseboards and pictures.

They can also hide out in where slats join beds, under wallpaper or borders that are loose, under wall-to-wall carpeting, under tack boards, in bed clothes, hollow bed frames and any place that is dark and isolated is a place that they would call home. Inspecting the home at night with only a red light will assist in locating the infestation.

Smell the suspicious areas; if there is a sweet smell resembling rotting raspberries you may have an infestation. This is the smell of the liquid excreted by the bug when it is afraid.

Brown or black spots of dried excrement on the bed linens also indicate their presence.

Tips on How to Eliminate Within the Home

These bugs are extremely sensitive to heat in every stage of their life. Thermal death point of a common bed bug is just 111°F to 113°F. Many times even temperatures that are lower than this, 97°F to 99° F can kill multitudes. If the temperature is raised to 140° F for about an hour or to 120°F for several hours most infestations will be eradicated.

If a steam cleaner is used to steam or hair dryer is used to heat the crevices and cracks of the mattress every week, this will assist in keeping them at bay. The mattress can be placed inside a sauna at 170°F weekly to help eliminate any bugs.

Low temperatures also kill these pests, including the eggs. These temperatures range from 32°F to 48°F and must be maintained for up to 50 days to ensure the eggs have died. The nymphs and adults will die within a few hours. An infested bedroom can be closed off and unheated during the cold weather and the bugs will be eradicated.

Vacuuming and Changing Lines

Vacuum all the areas where they routinely reside. By vacuuming all the hiding places daily, the bugs and their eggs will be removed along with their shelter-the dirt. ALWAYS be sure to place the vacuum bag into a sealed garbage bag outside.

Do this OUTSIDE of the home and immediately after vacuuming. EVEN IF THE BAG IS NOT FULL-this needs to be done EVERY time the home is vacuumed until the bugs have been TOTALLY eliminated from the home.

Change bed linens daily, or in the least weekly. Wash the bedding and the bed with Borax. The bedding should be laundered at the minimum of 120°F. Dry the bedding on high heat as well. Place the pillows and any other non-washable items in the dryer on high heat at least once weekly. Do not allow the bedding to touch the floor at any time.

Other Home Maintenance Tips

Since this bug cannot fly and only has the ability to crawl, moving the bed away from the wall would be helpful. To further protect the bed, sprinkle the bed with talcum powder. A vinyl cover placed over the mattress and the box springs will help to eliminate these bloodsuckers. Leave the vinyl covers on for at least a year.

Dust all the cracks, drawers and electrical outlets with talcum powder. Be sure to tighten, caulk and then screen all possible entry routes. Then, lightly dust these areas with Comet® or talcum powder.

Steam clean, vacuum the mattresses, or clean with Borax to remove bugs and any debris remaining. Caulk all the crevices and any cracks and re-glue any wallpaper or borders that are loose or falling down.

Vacuum all drawers and cabinets, this will also deter rodents from nesting in these areas. Consider hiring a pest control company to assist in the elimination process. These creatures are a very annoying and pernicious vermin and with an experienced professional helping, the time necessary to eradicate these pests will be shortened.

Eliminating and Preventing Outside the Home

Keep all vegetation away from the home’s foundation. This includes shrubs as well as weeds.

Move all woodpiles and debris away from the home.

Eliminate all the rodent pests and garbage outside the home.

Add Comments: