Chiggers belong to the family of mites, by the name Trombiculidae. Other mites of the family, include berry bugs, red bugs, and harvest mites, among others. Chiggers affect the host (human or animal) during their larval stage of growth. They do not actually bite the host, but secrete certain enzymes that break the skin. The broken skin cells are then the food of the mite. Chigger bite may cause dermatitis, severe irritation, red bumps, and rashes. While a chigger can affect any area of the body, they usually bite the skin folds, ankles, and the waist areas.
Chiggers can be found easily in the grasslands, forests, woodlands, orchards, along streams and lakes, and in some other damp areas. Their numbers increase during summers, when they are found in abundance in weeds, grasses, and other kinds of vegetation. These can be seen through a magnifying glass only, and hence they easily go unnoticed.
Chigger bites may take up to 3 weeks to heal. As the duration is long, you may undergo itching, rashes, and other symptoms during the period. There are ample number of home remedies that will help you control the rashes, pain, and other symptoms associated with the disease.
Here Are 8 Best Home Remedies For Chigger Mites
1. Castor Oil
Castor oil has been a part of traditional medicine since ages. It has anti-inflammatory properties, and can control, and reduce the inflammation, itchiness, and pain associated with a Chigger bite. Rub some amount of castor oil on the affected parts of the body directly. Follow the remedy 2 or 3 times during today, till the symptoms subsidize.
2. Hot Shower
A hot (lukewarm) shower will remove all the chiggers that may be lying on your body, using it as a host. Clean your skin by using an antiseptic soap, so that the digestive enzymes secreted by the mite are removed. Do not rub the affected body areas, once you have bathed. Pat dry, so that the itchiness does not aggravate. Also wash all the clothes that you may suspect of carrying the mite.
3. Vicks Vaporub
The common medication Vicks Vaporub is quite effective in healing the rashes, and itching, caused by a Chigger bite. The menthol in the rub heals the itchiness. Mix a bit of table salt and the rub, so that you get a soothing ointment. Apply the ointment on the affected areas (rashes). Let the application sit for as long as possible, and then clean.
4. Ice/Cold Compress
The numbing effect of the ice/cold compresses offer relief from itchiness in any kind of insect bite. To get relief from chigger bites, wrap a few ice cubes, in a cotton cloth, which is thin and clean. Apply this compress on the affected areas for around 10 minutes, or till the time you do not feel uncomfortable. Repeat the process, until you get ample relief from itching. Alternatively, you can also soak all the bite affected skin areas in cold water. This will control rash, and reduce itchiness.
5. Baking Soda
Baking soda is an alkaline substance, and neutralizes the acids naturally. It will bring fast relief from itching, and will also help control infection. To treat the rashes and itchiness caused by Chigger bite, make a paste of baking soda and water, and apply the paste on the affected areas of the body. Alternatively, you can mix the baking soda (1 cup) in a bathtub of water, stir well, and soak yourself in it for around 15 to 20 minutes. Later, use a soft towel for drying the body. Take the bath 2 times, every day, until the rashes are over.
The soothing, and anti-irritating oatmeal offers you fast relief from itching and rashes. It also controls and reduces inflammation, which may be a cause of pain. To heal skin affected by Chigger bite, cook and cool oatmeal poultice, and rub it on the affected areas suffering from itchiness and rashes. Follow this remedy a few times during the day.
Alternatively, add a cup of colloidal oatmeal in a bathing tub consisting of lukewarm after. Stir well, and soak yourself in it for around 20 minutes. Make the remedy twice a day.
7. Indian Lilac
Indian lilac, or Neem, has been a part of Ayurvedic medicine for ages. It has unique anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, among other positive health effects. Apart from eczema, its extracts can treat the itchiness and rashes caused by Chigger bite. It will also stop the infection to grow in other body areas. To treat the inflammation and itchiness, simmer a small amount of (a handful of) neem leaves, in 3 cups of water, for around 15 minutes. Now strain the solution containing the neem leaf extracts, let it cool sufficiently, and wash the affected areas of the body using it. Do the remedy 2 times every day, till the symptoms are treated.
8. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera has substances that possess anti-inflammatory properties. It also has Vitamin E that offers moisturization to the skin. To treat the itchiness, extract some gel from a freshly cut leaf of Aloe Vera. Apply the gel to the affected areas of the body. Let the substances sit for a period of 10 to 15 minutes, and then wash using lukewarm water. Make the remedy 3 times every day, until you get substantial relief.