Are you worried about bug bites that blister? Bug bites are, for the most part, annoying but harmless. The response to a sting or bite from insects is variable and depends on a variety of factors. Most bug bites and stings result in pain, swelling, redness, and itching to the affected area. In some cases, they result in blistering. It can be the case for mosquito bites, bed bug bites or spider bites.
In this post we'll discuss the types of bites that may cause blisters, and how to treat them with natural remedies.
Insect bites that can cause blisters: mosquito, bed bug and spider bites
Not everyone reacts to bug bites in the same manner. Some people may develop blisters after being bitten by bed bugs for example, while others won't.
Here are the most frequent types of bites that may cause blisters:
- Mosquito bites
- Bed bug bites
- Spider bites
mosquito BITES: why do they cause blisters?
If you are particularly sensitive to mosquito bites, you may develop bullae (fluid-filled blisters) or weals (circular, fluid-filled areas surrounding the bite). Many of the mosquito saliva proteins can cause reactions such as blisters. They can also cause more serious immune reactions.
Severe allergic reactions are not common, but they may result in blistering rashes, bruises, or large areas of swelling at the bite sites.
People who experience extremely large areas of swelling after a mosquito bite have been dubbed as having "Skeeter Syndrome".
Symptoms of Skeeter Syndrome include:
- Blistering rashes
- Red and painful swelling
- Fever (in some cases)
TIP TO PREVENT MOSQUITO BITES!
If you are very sensitive to mosquito bites and develop blisters, you need to protect yourself as much as possible. Some essential oils, such as lemon eucalyptus oil or neem oil, are great bug repellents. Studies show lemon eucalyptus oil may be more effective than DEET.
Do Bed bug bites blister?
Bed bug bites often look like small, flat or raised areas that may become inflamed, itchy, red or blistered.
They are quite similar to mosquito bites - a slightly swollen and red area that may itch and be irritating. The bites sometimes appear in a straight line.
Other symptoms of bed bug bites include insomnia, anxiety, and skin problems that arise from profuse scratching of the bites.
Bed bug bites don't necessarily blister, but they do in some cases. Bed bug blisters may take a few days to appear after being bitten.
Be aware that bed bugs are notoriously difficult to eliminate once they've established. If you're looking for bed bug treatments, read this page about diatomaceous earth. It's a cheap and non-toxic alternative to pesticides. Also consider buying a bed bug killer spray to get rid of these bugs. According to the Entomological Society of America's journal publication, EcoRaider is one of the best natural bed bug sprays. You may also protect your mattress with a bed bug proof mattress encasement.
Bug bites that blister: could it be a spider bite?
Spider bites typically form a blister on top of the bite within 1-2 days.
There are lots of different types of spiders. But if a blister form at the bite site, it may be a brown recluse spider bite. This type of spiders is usually found in the south-central part of the United States. Brown recluse spiders live in dry, hot and abandoned areas.
The bite may not appear to be serious immediately, but may become severe after some time. Sometimes, the swelling may form a blister.
Here are the other symptoms you may experience after being bitten by a brown recluse spider:
- Mild to intense pain and itching for 2 to 8 hours following the bite.
- A dark, scabby material called eschar may cover the blister within a week after the bite. This ulcerated area can continue to enlarge if not treated promptly by a physician.
Brown recluse spider bites may take months to heal. If you suspect this bite, see your doctor. Also, get medical help if you are not sure whether the bite was from a poisonous spider.
TIP FOR SPIDER BITES THAT BLISTER:
If you have a spider bite, consider applying some activated charcoal on the bite site. According to top10homeremedies.com, It helps draw out toxic substances from the body and reduce inflammation from a spider bite. Mix some Activated Charcoal powder with water, and apply the paste on the affected area to neutralize the toxin.
Other bug bites that blister
- Tick bites are not usually painful and sometimes only cause a red lump to develop where you were bitten. However, in some cases they may cause swelling, itchiness, blistering, and bruising. Some ticks carry diseases, which can be passed on when they bite. Prevention is key. Consider using rose geranium oil to avoid being bitten by ticks!
- Mites cause very itchy lumps to appear on the skin and can also cause blisters.
- Bees are the most typical stinging insects (this includes wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets). Pain from a bee, hornet or wasp sting is immediate, with rapid swelling, redness, warmth and itching at the site of the sting. Blisters may also occur.
What to do when an insect bite turns into blisters?
Most bites get usually better on their own, but it can sometimes take a couple of weeks or months. So it's always a good idea to see a doctor for proper treatment when an insect bite blisters.
Here is what can be done to accelerate healing:
- Use an adhesive bandage to protect the blistered area and prevent infection.
- Don't scratch the bite because this can make the bite more itchy and swollen and increase the chance of a secondary infection. Blisters do not often cause pain unless they rupture, exposing the new skin underneath.
- Use cool damp compresses to relieve the itching. The cold temperature from ice can help numb the nerve endings, thus relieving the itching sensation caused by bug bites. It will also help calm the swelling.
How Long Does it Take for a Blister to Heal? Learn about blister duration & remedies to speed up healing.
The best natural remedies for bug bites
Natural treatments are often used and they are usually quite effective to treat insect bites that blister.
Calendula for bug bites that blister
Calendula is a helpful herbal remedy in the treatment of mosquito bites and other insect bites.
Calendula cream can relieve irritation and itching while also providing antiseptic benefits.
A blister can be treated by dabbing some calendula ointment on it. This will help the skin heal faster.
How to use calendula for insect bites?
Cleanse the area with mild soap, rinse and dry. Apply a thin layer of Calendula gel onto the insect bite 3 times a day or as needed. BOIRON makes a great non-sticky, non-greasy first aid Calendula gel. It's cooling and refreshing. You can buy it here.
Apple cider vinegar to relieve the itch
Apple cider vinegar is a popular remedy for bug bites. It helps relieve the itching and burning caused by bug bites.
How to use apple cider vinegar for insect bites that blister?
Dab apple cider vinegar on a cottontail and apply it on your bites. You may want to dilute apple cider vinegar with water if you have sensitive skin. Apple cider vinegar is such a great home remedy to have at home. Choose an unpasteurized & organic apple cider vinegar. You want to keep the sediment ("the mother") that contains healthy vitamins, minerals and enzymes. I usually buy Bragg's raw apple cider vinegar.
Emu oil to reduce the swelling
Have you ever heard of emu oil?
Emu oil is extracted from the fat of the emu bird. Australian Aborigines knew the benefits of emu oil and used it to treat lots of different health issues.
Emu oil can relieve the itch and reduce the swelling. It also enhances the healing process and reduces scarring.
How to use emu oil?
There's a popular anti-itch and soothing stick, called ON THE GO STICK. It contains emu oil (no parabens, fragrance, chemicals, or gluten) and seems to be really effective for bug bites that blister. To learn more about the health benefits of emu oil, read this article!
Witch hazel to calm the itch
Witch hazel is a liquid astringent produced from the leaves and bark of the North American Witch-hazel shrub (Hamamelis virginiana).
Mostly used as a facial cleanser, it can also help calm itching caused by bug bites because it contains tannins that have a mild anesthetic effect.
It has been shown to be useful in the treatment of various skin problems because of its anti-inflammatory properties.
How to use witch hazel?
Soak a cotton ball in witch hazel and place it on the affected area for 10 minutes. I strongly recommend Thayers Witch Hazel, especially the one with soothing rose petal water. This product also contains certified organic aloe vera and is free of alcohol, parabens and propylene glycol.
Aloe vera to heal blisters
Aloe vera gel is soothing for your skin and can help treat bug bites that blister.
Its active compounds and amino acids help ease itching and burning caused by insect bites. It also aids healing the skin.
How to use aloe vera to heal blisters?
Apply aloe vera gel on your bites a few times a day for a couple of days. It's best to use fresh aloe vera, but you can also buy it. If you're looking for a high-quality aloe vera gel, Amara Organics makes a great one. The thick gel-like Aloe you usually find in stores is often loaded with chemicals; this one is not! You can buy it on Amazon here.
PLANTAIN TO TREAT BLISTERS
Plantain may be used externally to treat bug bites that blister. Native Americans used plantain leaves to relieve the pain of insect bites and bee stings. It helps stop the itching of allergic rashes and promote healing.
How can you use plantain for bug bites?
For relief from an insect bite, simply shred (or chew) a plantain leaf and hold it on the bite for a few minutes. A plantain ointment can also rapidly relieves itching and swelling.
Can essential oils help soothe insect bites?
Essential oils can help soothe bug bites and accelerate the healing process.
Lavender and tea tree essential oils are the most commonly used oils to treat bug bites that blister. Eucalyptus, thyme, rosemary are also known to alleviate symptoms of bug bites.
Lavender essential oil for insect bites
Lavender essential oil works really well for bites, especially severe mosquito bites.
Lavender is anti-inflammatory, calming, antiseptic, antiviral, bactericide, analgesic, cicatrisant, fungicide, nervine, relaxing and sedative. These properties make it perfect for treating stings and bug bites that blister.
Tea tree oil for bug bites that blister
Tea tree oil comes from tea trees in Australia. This oil has been used by aborigines for hundreds of years for its natural healing qualities.
Tea tree oil kills bacteria, fungi, and viruses. It effectively combats infections that are resistant to antibiotics. Other active components alleviate inflammation. Its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial components help with tissue regeneration.
Using tea tree oil for insect bites that blister will also reduce the risk of infection.
Choose 100% pure tea tree essential oil. I recommend these two brands: Art Naturals or Pure Body Naturals. The tea tree oil from Pure Body Naturals contains 45% terpenin-4-ol, which is the major component responsible for antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.
How to use essential oils for insect bites?
A few drops diluted in a carrier oil can be applied directly onto the bite.
Use coconut oil as a carrier oil. Coconut oil is another antibacterial oil that is very soothing for itchy bites. It helps stop the itching and the inflammation.
If you don't have coconut oil, tea tree oil or lavender essential oil may be used neat on bites. However it's better to dilute it especially if you have sensitive skin. In you have any doubts, consult an aromatherapist or another qualified practitioner.
Care should be taken when applying essential oils. Always perform a skin patch test before use and be aware that essential oils may cause undesired health side effects if not used properly. For example, breastfeeding women should not use tea tree oil since it has hormonal properties. It's contraindicated during pregnancy as it may decrease the strength of contractions.
Read this page about the best essential oils for skin to learn a bit more about the essential oils and how to use them!
Should You Pop A Bug Bite Blister?
It's best not to pop your blisters to speed up the healing process.
According to WebMD, you shouldn't puncture a blister unless it's large, painful, or will cause further irritation if left alone. The fluid-filled sac is a protective cover to prevent infection.
Also, don't scratch it. The more you scratch the worse the itch! Learn why scratching it makes the itch and symptoms last longer.
Natural treatments can be quite effective at treating insect bites that blister. However, if you develop a severe reaction to a mosquito bite, a spider bite or any other bug bite, consult a doctor as soon as possible to avoid serious health complications.
In rare situations, some people experience anaphylaxis after being bitten by a bug. Some people can even experience whole body urticaria and angioedema (hives and swelling), or worsening of asthma symptoms after being bitten.
Some complications such as secondary bacterial infections are also sometimes associated with bug bites. If you have many bites or a bite looks infected, you should see a dermatologist.
Do you have bug bites that blister? Please leave a comment below to share your experience! Also listen to the video below with Dr. Ava Shamban. She talks about bug bites and what you should do if they get itchy!