- Toothpaste for Mosquito Bites
- How Long Leave Toothpaste On
- How Long Does It Take?
- Stop Itching
- Prevent Mosquito Bites
- When to See a Doctor
Does toothpaste work on mosquito bites?
Female mosquitoes bite humans and animals to get blood for egg production. While some people only react mildly to mosquito bites, others show severe reactions with intense swelling, soreness, or redness in the affected area. You can reduce these reactions with toothpaste at home, but you may need to visit a doctor if the bite causes severe swelling.
Toothpaste is the most accessible home remedy for mosquito bites. It is an effective disinfectant, antimicrobial, and antiseptic, meaning that it can effectively fight against bacteria and infections. These properties help soothe the annoying itching that comes after a mosquito bite.
Toothpaste in menthol or peppermint flavor is preferable for the mosquito bite treatment, as these ingredients act as cooling agents and distract you from scratching the bite. The other ingredients in toothpaste work effectively in restricting the fluid build-up and hence reducing the swelling.
Choose a non-gel-based toothpaste for mosquito bites to reduce the itching and swelling. Just apply a significant amount of toothpaste to your affected area and make sure it covers the area adequately.
Another helpful ingredient in toothpaste is baking soda. It has been used for soothing inflamed skin and reducing itchiness and irritation for years. Since baking soda is an alkaline, it can help neutralize the pH of your skin after a mosquito bite and alleviate the itching sensation.
How long do you leave toothpaste on a mosquito bite?
It’s best to leave the toothpaste on the mosquito bite until it dries out, This treats the swelling along with the itching. If the toothpaste doesn't dry in 10 to 15 minutes, you can rinse it off with water and still feel an improvement in the itching.
How long does it take for a mosquito bite to disappear?
Most people experience mild cases of mosquito bites, where they notice the appearance of small itchy bumps on the affected area. These bumps are pink-colored, which usually become visible within 20 minutes of the bite. The itching can peak within 24-48 hours.
Such mosquito bite bumps usually disappear in three to four days and may take seven days to heal completely.
How else do you stop mosquito bites from itching?
Some people may experience allergic reactions to toothpaste due to ingredients like artificial flavorings and sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). SLS is a common detergent in toothpaste that can irritate the human skin.
Luckily, you can also reduce mosquito bites' itching and swelling with other methods. Immediate mosquito bite treatments include:
- Cold packs. An ice pack or cold pack works wonders in reducing swelling or itching after a mosquito bite. Always wash the affected area immediately with soap and water, and then apply an ice pack for about 10 minutes. Reapply if needed.
- Apply a lotion or paste. Make a paste of baking soda and water and apply it to the mosquito bite to reduce the itching. Wash the paste off after 10 minutes.
- Antihistamine. An over-the-counter antihistamine cream relieves itching within minutes. Keep in mind to read the product label before applying or ask a doctor. You can also take an oral antihistamine for stronger reactions, such as Benadryl or Chlor-Trimeton.
According to Dr. Greta Braun, a family medicine physician at Aurora Health Centre, the most effective remedies for mosquito bites are already available in your kitchen cabinet or pantry.
Some home remedies include:
- Aspirin. The active ingredient in aspirin, acetylsalicylic acid, is an anti-inflammatory agent that significantly helps with swelling symptoms and itching. Make a paste of aspirin with water and apply it to the affected area for instant relief.
- Cinnamon and honey. Cinnamon and honey have exceptional antibacterial and antifungal properties, which make this combination a quick relief from nasty mosquito bites.
- Onion. Onion, either minced or sliced, helps reduce the swelling caused by mosquito bites and soothes the itching. The pungent smell of onions also acts as an effective mosquito repellent.
- Cucumber. When applied cold, cucumber slices relieve the itching and provide relief from swelling caused by the bite.
How can I prevent mosquito bites?
Mosquitoes are challenging to avoid, especially in the summer. You can practice some preventive measures to reduce the chances of getting mosquito bites. Some practical tips to prevent mosquito bites are:
- Applying a mosquito repellent before going outdoors
- Wearing covered clothes as much as possible
- Using mosquito nets while sleeping
- Installing mosquito screens on the areas of ventilation, such as windows and doors
- Avoiding places where mosquitoes are present in abundance
When to see a doctor
Mosquito bites are not a medical emergency and usually go away within a few days. But in rare cases, the bites last longer than a week and may cause an infection or extreme discomfort. In such cases, you need to immediately visit a doctor for professional guidance.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Advocate Aurora Health: "10 home remedies to treat mosquito bites."
Aurora Health Care: "Greta R. Braun."
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Mosquito Bite Symptoms and Treatment."
Dental Research Journal: "Antimicrobial Efficacy of Different Toothpastes and Mouthrinses: An In Vitro Study."
Mayo Clinic: "Mosquito bites."
The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology: "Menthol and related cooling compounds."
The University of Michigan: "Itching Relief."
The University of Queensland: "What is sodium lauryl sulfate and is it safe to use?"
Top Can You Use Toothpaste to Relieve Mosquito Bites Related Articles
Mosquito RepellentsMosquito bites are itchy, annoying, and can even make you sick. Find out what works (and what doesn't) to protect you from these blood-sucking bugs.
Bad Bugs: Identify Insects and Bug BitesWhat do bug bites look like? How do you treat bug bites? Why do bug bites burn? See spider bite pictures and learn how to identify bug bites from mosquitoes, bees, bed bugs, wasps, and more. See what their bites & stings look like and how to treat bug bites. For more details, enter a search for the specific insects or bugs as this slideshow is a brief introduction to the topic.
camphorCamphor is an aromatic flammable substance originally distilled from the bark and wood of the camphor tree, Cinnamomum camphora, used as an active ingredient in ointments, camphorated oils and gels, which are topically applied on the skin to relieve local itching (pruritus) or pain, applied on the chest or throat to relieve cough and congestion, or added to steam inhalations to relieve cough. Handle with care and keep away from flame or fire. Consult with your doctor if pregnant or breastfeeding.
How To Tell the Difference Between a Spider Bite and a Mosquito BiteLearn how tell the difference between a spider bite and a mosquito bite and how to care for each.
diphenhydramine topicalDiphenhydramine topical is a medication applied on the skin for the temporary relief of pain and itching (pruritus) from insect bites, sunburns, and other minor skin irritations. Diphenhydramine topical is available over the counter (OTC) in the form of gels, creams, sprays, and sticks that can be applied locally on the affected area. Diphenhydramine topical is used to relieve pain and itching caused by insect bites, sunburn, minor cuts and scrapes, minor burns and other skin irritations, and rash caused by poison oak, ivy, or sumac. Common side effects of diphenhydramine topical include skin sensitivity to light (photosensitivity), rash, and hives (urticaria).
Do Mosquito Magnets Work?Mosquitos are known for transmitting many types of diseases to humans. Mosquito magnets worked in trapping up to 60+ a night, including mosquitoes that carried malaria.
How Do You Know if It's a Bed Bug Bite or a Flea Bite?Learn the difference between flea bites and bed bug bites.
How Do You Know If You Are Allergic to Mosquito Bites?Mosquito bite allergies can cause issues if untreated. Learn the signs of a mosquito bite allergy, what causes it, and what you can do to treat it.
eucalyptusEucalyptus oil is used for medicinal purposes, including the common cold, asthma, bronchial infections, skin rashes, insect bites, minor muscle aches or joint pain, and minor skin injuries. Never ingest undiluted eucalyptus oil, even small quantities; it is highly toxic and potentially fatal. Common side effects of eucalyptus include local allergic reactions (redness, burning, irritation), nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, dizziness, drowsiness, shortness of breath (dyspnea), bluish skin (cyanosis), muscle weakness, impaired balance, seizures, and others.
8 First Aid Kit Essentials for Scrapes, Cuts, Bug Bites, and MoreAre you always prepared for a first aid crisis? See which basic first aid items to pack to treat minor scrapes, cuts, and stings when you're on the go.
Home Remedies for Mosquito BitesMosquito bites appear as red, itchy rashes, which resolves in a few days. A few mosquitoes act as a vector to spread diseases like Malaria, West Nile virus, Yellow fever, Dengue, Chikungunya, Encephalitis (brain infection), and Zika virus.
How Do You Stop Mosquito Bites From Itching?Mosquito bites can be irritating. Learn what causes the itch and how to stop it.
rabies vaccineThe rabies vaccine is a viral vaccine administered to prevent or treat rabies, a lethal infectious disease that affects the nervous system. Common side effects of the rabies vaccine include dizziness, headache, feeling unwell (malaise), muscle pain (myalgia), nausea, and abdominal pain. Consult your doctor if pregnant or breastfeeding. Consult with your healthcare provider for rabies vaccination if you are bitten or scratched by a rabid wild or pet animal, or a pet animal whose rabies vaccination status is unknown.
Skin RashThe word "rash" means an outbreak of red bumps on the body. The way people use this term, "a rash" can refer to many different skin conditions. The most common of these are scaly patches of skin and red, itchy bumps or patches all over the place.
Summer Skin QuizWhen it comes to summer, there plenty of hazards under the sun! Take the Summer Skin Hazards Quiz and clue in on the dangers to your summer skin!
Which Is the Most Effective Mosquito Repellent?The most effective mosquito repellent is N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide (DEET), also called diethyltoluamide.
witch hazelWitch hazel (Hamamelis virginiana) is a tree native to North America. Indigenous Americans have used witch hazel for various conditions including hemorrhoids, sore muscles, insect bites, cuts, rashes, sunburn, and bruises. Common side effects of witch hazel include mild skin dryness, minor skin irritation, nausea, vomiting, stomach upset, liver damage, and kidney damage. Do not take witch hazel orally if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
yellow fever vaccineYellow fever vaccine is a live, weakened (attenuated) viral vaccine administered for the prevention of yellow fever, a viral infection caused by flavivirus, transmitted by mosquito bites. Common side effects of yellow fever vaccine include headache, feeling unwell (malaise), chills, fever, weakness (asthenia), muscle pain (myalgia), injection site reactions, hypersensitivity reactions, and others. Do not take if trying to become pregnant or breastfeeding.