Hello! I haven’t done a wellness post in quite some time, it feels like, so today I would like to share the home remedies I have learned that have worked for me for the past year in dealing with spider bites. It’s funny, I never seem to catch the cold or flu, but when bit, 99% of the time I have an allergic reaction and the bite will keep getting worse/spreading unless I go on antibiotics or use certain home remedies. I try to avoid antibiotics as much as possible now, so any time I learn a new home remedy, I make sure to store it away in my memory bank.
I just recently got bit again a few weeks ago for the first time this year, so this is partly why I realized it was time to write about my bug bite experiences since I have been dealing with them since I was at least 5 years old. This time Rafael’s mother helped me and she put an aloe vera poultice on my leg. It actually worked and greatly reduced the swelling, and helped eliminate the toxins from the back of my thigh where the two bites were (yes, sadly they come in twos for the most part.)
Aloe Vera Poultice
What you need:
- Aloe Vera Plant
- Saran Wrap
- Small Frying Pan
All she did was break off a piece of aloe vera leaf and heated the shell/hard leaf side face down on a frying pan for a bit. Then after that, she put the liquid side of the plant on my infected bite and wrapped it with saran wrap to keep it in place. Because it was on the back of my leg I had to lie down on my stomach for about 30-40 minutes. I wanted to make sure it was really soaking in. Once I removed it, several minutes later I noticed a decrease in the swelling. I did it again a second time the next day and the swelling went down some more. I would have done it a third time, but I didn’t have the time. Sometimes this is the only downside of home remedies. They can be time consuming. It just took me two times with the aloe vera poultice though, and luckily the bite went bye-bye.
Aloe vera has anesthetic and anti-bacterial properties so this is why it significantly reduced the swelling on my leg. It also helps with scarring and with burns.
This website recommends using gauze to hold the aloe vera leaf in place.
I recently discovered activated charcoal about two years ago now. I first learned it helped in stomach ailments and just eliminating toxins throughout the body. It can be taken internally, even in capsule form, or used externally in powder form which is what I use for my spider bites. Back in 2011 I had a really bad bite when I went out of the country and I went on antibiotics and even had a shot injected right in my bottom…for three years after that I would miraculously remain untouched by insects. I think I had one little mosquito bite during those 3 years, but it never got infected or swollen. It wasn’t until just last year in the Spring when I would finally get bit again for the first time in 3 years and I was devastated my luck had finally run out. Before that 3 year period without any bites I would seem to get bit at least 2-3 times a year! So to have the bites coming back to haunt me again was greatly disappointing.
For this first bite in 3 years I finally used activated charcoal on my spider bite. It worked!
What you need:
- Activated Charcoal Powder
- Small Bowl
- Gauze (optional)
- Saran Wrap (optional)
All I did was make a activated charcoal paste with about two teaspoons of charcoal powder and added enough water in a small bowl to start creating a paste. I then stirred it a bit with a Q-Tip until I was able to start applying it to my bite with the Q-Tip. I did this two times a day for 2-3 days. Once it starts to dry out, that’s when you know it’s done and you can clean off the rest of the remaining activated charcoal. Because activated charcoal is so messy and starts to fall everywhere once it dries however, l would recommend you put the paste on gauze instead, and so it can help hold the paste in place.
This website gives a better description on making a paste with gauze and plastic wrap.
I did try using activated charcoal a second time when I got bit again at the end of last year, but this time it didn’t work because I think the heat made my bite worse and I was on vacation again at the time, so the charcoal I used had been sitting in the car. I eventually had to sadly go on antibiotics instead. At this point I would start using the aloe vera method instead to treat actual bites, and constantly keep essential oils on handy to keep spiders away as much as possible to prevent being bitten period.
Salt and baking soda can also be used apparently. Earth Clinic has more information on that.
I have been keeping Eucalyptus oil on handy for almost a year now, but finally started also using peppermint oil, because it seems that more people recommend peppermint oil or lavender and tea tree oil over Eucalyptus oil in repelling insects/spiders. But since Eucalyptus has so many other great properties regardless, I still keep this on my Spider Repellent regime. I think in the end it also comes down to personal scent preference.
What you need:
- Spray Bottle (I got mine at Target)
- Essential Oils (Either Lavender, Peppermint, or Eucalyptus are known to help keep insects away)
I put about 7 drops of Peppermint oil in my spray bottle and then filled it up with warm water. After that I just shook it up. There are other methods you can use, and you can even mix 2-3 ingredients including dish soap, but I decided to go with one for now. I use the Eucalyptus oil to rub on my body before I go to bed, because I always seem to get bit in bed or if I’m out late at night. You can spray small crevices with the spray bottle, and even yourself, which is what I do now. Peppermint smells so good!
Other Recommended reading:
- 33+ Eucalyptus Oil Uses and Benefits
- How To Get Rid of Spiders
- Top 10 Natural Ways To Keep Spiders Out of Your Home
Just a reminder that I am obviously not a professional and these are just the methods that have worked for me! I hope everyone has a great insect bite-free day!