Mosquito bites are very common and most people have experienced it some time, even if your place is not filled with them. A number of those little bloodsuckers are carriers of several diseases, like dengue and malaria. Many of you are perhaps unaware that only female mosquitoes drink blood and they don’t do it for nourishment but to produce eggs. Their nourishment comes from plant nectar. Another fact is that the mosquitoes are not really biting us. In fact, they are piercing us. Despite the momentary pain, what drives us crazy is the itching sensation that persists for some time. We scratch on it, and it only gets intense until we can’t tolerate it anymore.
What is the reason behind the itching that accompanies the mosquito bite? The bite is actually the piercing of skin by its proboscis, a sharp part of mouth that allows it to drink fluids. When it starts to drink the blood, it releases its saliva to the blood. The mosquito saliva contains an anti-coagulant substance that allows it to drink the blood more easily.
At the presence of this foreign substance, your immune system gets activated. It results in the release of Histamine, a nitrogen compound that helps the blood cells to fight foreign substances. The histamine reaches the spot where the mosquito had bitten, causing the blood vessels there to swell up. This is the reason behind the formation of a red bump there, called wheal. The itching sensation that accompanies it is the result of action by the nervous system. When the blood vessel expands, the nerves there are disturbed by it. It is the disturbance that is experienced as the itching sensation.
Now, the question is how to stop the red bump from itching. While there are many commercial products for it, it isn’t really necessary to stock them all in the cupboards. As with any other problem, the solution is there in nature itself. These are a few home remedies that can help you.
- Honey is a natural antibiotic. A dab of honey can nicely do the trick and alleviate the itch in a small time.
- A small amount of baking soda, made into a paste with water, can be applied to the area and the itching will fade away in no time.
- What about the toothpaste and the soap! A little bit of them applied directly on the area can soothe the swell and itching for a long time.
- Hold a piece of cotton soaked with apple cider vinegar on the wound for some time and the itch will disappear soon. It is due to the acidic property of the vinegar.
- Citric acid has some healing properties. Dabbing the open side of a lemon on the wound can alleviate the itch in some time.
- You can also try Aspirin and alcohol as well. Both of them cool the affected area and sooth the itching sensation. Those who are allergic to the substances are advised to refrain from this method.
- Dabbing a piece of onion on the wound also helps to alleviate the itch on the bump.
- Applying an ice cube is a good idea. It will soothe the itch for a while.
- Cut a potato and dab the open side on the bite. It will diminish the pain soon.
- Your own saliva can be applied if other remedies don’t help. This works out for many people.
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