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Guide for hikers: Insect’s bites

Published by in 03. Hiking · 1/6/2016 10:54:00
Tags: insects;protection;itch;welts;remedies;honey;milk;tea

Depending on the season, time of day, and weather, your hike may be spectacular or burdened with thousands of obnoxious insects bothering you the entire time. You may not be able to eliminate them completely, but here are some tips to prevent them.

1.   Steering clear of tall grass - The best way to prevent tick bites is to avoid brushy areas and tall grass. Also, ticks are less likely to be a problem on dry, sunny days than on damp, cloudy days.

2.   Hiking during the morning and afternoon - Be off the trail before sunset to avoid the peak mosquito hours. Try to stay on open, sunny trails rather than in shady, protected forest.

3.   Wear a hat - to help keep insects from getting in your hair.

4.   Avoid perfume and scented lotions - The best way to prevent sting from bees, wasps, hornets, or yellow jackets, is to slowly move away down the trail. Swatting at it or rapid movement can provoke an attack.Honey bees have a barbed stinger and it gets stuck in your skin so they can only sting once and then die. But, yellow jackets and hornets have no barbs and can sting repeatedly. Also keep your food and garbage sealed in plastic bags and avoid strongly odored food.

Always have some of these natural remedies for prevention:

If you don’t mind a bit of stickiness, honey is one of the most effective remedies for itchy skin.
Honey is an anti-inflammatory and can make the itching a little less tempting. It also has antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Rub the HONEYSTICK onto the itchy part of your skin. Let the honey sit for 15 minutes. Wash off with warm water.Repeat as desired
Milk and Water
Mix equal parts skim milk and water, dip a thin cloth (like handkerchief or an old T-shirt) into the concoction, and dab your skin.
Tea Bags
Cool tea bags draw fluid out of a bite to reduce itching and swelling.
Most toothpastes have a mint or peppermint flavor, and the menthol ingredient creates a cooling sensation on your skin. Plus, the intrinsic astringency of toothpaste helps reduce swelling.

Apple cider vinegar
This is a great remedy to block itching because of its small acidic levels. Dab it onto individual spots or, if your body’s been a buffet for bugs, you can add two to three cups to warm water and soak in a tub.

Baking Soda
To quell the itch of bug bites, mix baking soda with enough water to make a sticky paste, rub it over the bug bite, and leave it there to dry.

Be aware of the kinds of insects to be found in the areas you hike and be ready in case of an encounter with them. Having a wilderness first aid booklet along is always a good idea, too.

The preceding information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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