Mosquito bite cure: Yep, it actually works
On one of the popular "life hacks" posts going around social media, there was a suggestion for how to instantly get rid of mosquito bites. I've seen a lot of different ways to stop mosquito bite itching, get rid of redness, and other supposed mosquito bite remedies -- and I've tried them all. None really worked. As luck would have it, the mosquitoes have had a feast off of me during this past week. While I was trying to decide what to write about today, I couldn't concentrate with the insane itching on my legs, back and arms from over a dozen different bites (I know, I know, horrible way to avoid West Nile, but they seem to completely ignore repellants). So, what could it hurt? I decided to give this mosquito bite remedy a try.
The mosquito bite remedy itself is simple: Heat up a spoon under hot tap water, then hold the somewhat heated metal against the bite for a minute or two. It's supposed to destroy the proteins that cause itching in the mosquito bite. A quick search says that mosquito saliva composition is a little more complex than that, but I still had hopes that it'd respond to heat.
Time to try a test mosquito bite. First, I was only able to hold the hot spoon on the bite for about 30 seconds before my cheap, thin spoon went cold. The bite still itched, so I tried two more 30-second applications. It still itched, so I decided that this remedy must also be useless. But within 30 minutes, the itching had stopped. I rubbed the still-red bump, and that rubbing produced a very slight itch. Within about another half an hour, that itch was gone too. Now, two hours later, the test bite is still a little red, but significantly reduced in size and not at all itchy. Not really instant, but certainly effective.
So, it appears this remedy does work. I did the same thing to three more bites about an hour ago, and they are similarly improving. The only difference is that I used a heated butter knife instead of a spoon, so the thicker metal retained heat for almost a minute for each of two applications. Note that you shouldn't heat it any more than hot tap water because you don't want to burn your skin, but give it a try and feel free to share your results.
Photo credit: Kuchenkraut on Wikimedia Commons, originally posted here