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Anti itch medicine, remedies and recipes

It depends a bit on the cause of the itch as to how to respond but you can try one after the other if you are not sure.

Insect bites from black flies and mosquitoes can be a real problem and bug spray is never providing 100% protection. The following remedies can provide real relieve.

Common Plantain, Plantago major, Snake Weed, Plantago lanceolata

This very valuable plant is unfortunately often regarded as weed but it has some astounding anti-inflammatory properties. Only the fresh leaves should be used. The plant looses quickly it's anti-inflammatory properties in alcohol extracts or dried form.
Broadleaf Plantain Ribwort or narrowleaf Plantain

Take a whole leave and rub it until the sap starts to come out. Apply it then on parts of the body stung by insects. Plantain is also useful for light burns. On minor wounds it will stay the bleeding and accelerate the healing process. Plantain has some anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properites.

Common Plantain grows best on mineral rich soil between lime stones.

Ascorbic acid solution (C6H8O6 dissolved in water)

Ascorbic acid aka Vitamin C is very effective against the itch from Mosquito bites.

Boil water to sterilize it (this is to make the solution last longer), let it cool down and then add 1 tea spoon of pure ascorbic acid powder per 200ml of water. Spray or rub this solution onto the affected area. One application is usually enough. If you apply it right after the Mosquito left (or you have seen it and killed it) then it might not even create a bump or start to itch.

The shelf life time of the solution is a few weeks. It becomes light yellow and then brown as it gets older. You should replace it when it is brown.

Ammonia, Ammonium Hydroxide solution (NH3 dissolved in water, NH4OH)

Ammonium Hydroxide stops the itch on irritated skin. The solution should have a concentration of 2-3% max. Most stores sell 10% solutions so you have to add some water.

You can prepare an anti-itch cream by mixing a tea spoon of Aloe Vera Gel with a few drops of Ammonium Hydroxide. Note that this cream should be kept in a closed container.

If you want an easy way to apply the pure Ammonium Hydroxide solution (not a cream) then take a small bottle (e.g 10ml), fill it half with a 2% Ammonium Hydroxide solution and press a piece of a sponge it into the bottle neck. Press the sponge deep enough into the bottle such that you can still close it with the cap but only so deep that it comes still out a bit. You have now a "Ammonium Hydroxide felt-tip".

Applied to itching insect bits it will provide immediate relief.

Apply Ammonium Hydroxide only to the spot where the insect stung. Do not use Ammonium Hydroxide on larger skin areas. NH3 penetrates the skin easily and is toxic in large quantities. NH3 is the main active ingredient in "Afterbite" (an over the counter anti itch remedy).

Eucalyptus oil

This is a mild natural anti-itch medicine. Apply a bit of Eucalyptus oil on the area of the skin. Eucalyptus is not as strong as Ammonia but it will give relief over time.


Cut a slice from an onion (any onion, the type does not matter) and apply it directly to the affected area. You can keep it in place with a band-aid.

Ground cloves and peppermit oil mixed with coconut oil

Put a few dried whole cloves in a small grinder and mix the resulting powder with coconut oil and a few drops of peppermit oil into a cream.

whole cloves
Whole cloves can be found in the spices section of your supermarket

Cloves have a mild numbing and anesthetic effect.

Stung by a wasp or a bee?

Wasps and bees can as well be a problem. Note that the toxin of bees and wasps is different. Vinegar helps when you are stung by a wasp while baking soda and water is better for bee stings. Many people confuse bees and wasps. They are totally different species. Bees have hairs on their legs and on the back while wasps have a more shiny body and they do not have any hair. Bess can be found near flowers (e.g in the lawn) while wasps try to get to your food.

If you or a friend can get to the area where you were stung then suck the poison out with your mouth. You have a few seconds to do that. The poison has a bitter taste and you can simply spit it out. Even if you can not get all of it out it is still one of the best things you can do in the first few seconds.

Anti itch cream: Bee

Mix baking soda, salt and bentonite clay with a bit of water and apply it to the area where you were stung. Keep it wet.

Anti itch solution: Wasp

Soak a small piece of cloth with vinegar and put the cloth on the area where you were stung. Add more vinegar as soon as the cloth starts to get dry. You can as well mix bentonite clay with vinegar and apply that to your skin.

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© 2004-2024 Guido Socher