So, how can you treat your little one’s mosquito bite? Here are four ways to minimize the scratching:
- Apply a cold pack or a baggie of crushed ice to the bite as soon as possible to help prevent itching and swelling. Roll-on deodorants that contain aluminum chloride can help shrink the bite as well.
- Ease itching by applying hydrocortisone cream, calamine lotion or a paste to the bug bite. According to the Mayo Clinic, you can make a paste by taking 1 teaspoon of water and mixing it with an equal volume of dry meat tenderizer. This also works for bee and wasp stings.
- Discourage your child from scratching. Scratching can break the skin around the bite and cause an infection.
- Call your doctor if you think your child has an infection. Signs include redness, swelling, puss or the area may feel warm to the touch. Most people never get sick from a mosquito bite, but mosquitoes do carry disease, including theWest Nilevirus. If your child develops a fever, headache or nausea, call your doctor and mention the bite.
The best treatment is prevention. Use an insect repellant on children before they play outdoors. Dress children in long pants or long sleeves if you know they will be playing in a mosquito-infested area. Also, avoid playing outside at dusk when mosquitoes are most active, and dump any standing water around the yard that can serve as a breeding spot.
Phone the Baptist Health Line 24/7 at (270) 575-2918 if you have questions about insect bites. Our nurses welcome your questions, and we’ll answer them here every Wednesday.