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fire ant bite relief??

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fire ant bite relief??
  • ok, all you southern belles out there... who's got "mom's remedy" for fire ant bite relief???
    i took the dogs swimming yesterday, and my feet got attacked by fire ants.  the bites are HUGELY swollen and painful and itchy.  i'm trying not to scratch, but when i *have to*[:@] the bite pops and is all weepy and even itchier!!
    i HATE fire ants.  HATE HATE HATE[>:][sm=flamethrower.gif]
  • Except with fire ants you HAVE to scratch the head off and release the poison or they will simply continue to spread the poison.
    I would also soak them in epson salts (warm water) and maybe a couple of tablespoons of boric acid in the water as well to calm things down and to draw out more of the poison, and TAKE BENEDRYL (yeah, remember - I know who I'm talking to here -- but just plain GO TO BED).  Stay OFF your feet -- seriously -- and lay flat with your feet up -- that will help reduce the swelling but you really don't want this poison going thru your whole system.
    If you aren't feeling much better tomorrow you may need to go to the ER.  Fire ants are something you can be pretty badly allergic to -- and it's a nasty reaction. 
    One time when I was in college, I worked for the college's book publishing company and I spent an afternoon filing statements (b-o-r-i-n-g).  We had to wear skirts and hose ALL the time and I discovered late in the afternoon that the CARPET where I was kneeling to file was FULL of fire ants that had come up from the ground thru the insulation (I was on THIRD floor).  I had those darned things all over my legs from my toes to ... let's just say well above my knees, ok??  I was biitten all over and had probably like 25 bites on me.  UGH.  I was in the infirmary for 3 days--- and that's where I learned you had to scratch the head off and squeeze the poison out as fully as you can (it's clear) and either put peroxide or similar on the bites.
    The other thing you can use topiocally, but it's a royal pain, is ammonia.  Literally ammonia straight from the bottle applied to the bites AFTER you open them -- that will kill the itch.  It will also burn like fire.
    Red ants inject a poison when they bite so it's not just anaphylactic shock. 
    You CAN open 4-5 benedryl capsules and add maybe a tablespoon  of water and let it dissolve.  Then rub THAT on the bites for some topical relief.
    If you can get to a health store see if you can get Hylands "Hives" blend -- that would work really well on red ant bites.  THAT wouldn't make you sleepy and it would treat it for allergies. 
  • I hate em too!  Sometimes rubbing an ice cube over them will curb the itch for a bit.  Tincture of time....
  • Get bit by them every summer since you were four. Worked for me.  I am pretty much immune to them now.  The bite will itch for an hour or so and then be gone.
    Seriosly though, when I was younger they hurt and itched for a long time though.  Hydrocortisone cream helped the itch subside some. And what Callie said.
  • I've tried the epson salt, like calliecritturs said, and it worked.

    Plain oatmeal...put it on like a mask...but only after you pop them and squeeze them.
  • holy crap!  my mom has spent my whole life telling me NOT to pop and squeeze!! this'll be so much fun![:D]
    i've never seen anyone's bites swell like mine- normal people just get the white head and a little redness- with me, the whole area is swelled.  like noticeably for a few inches outside the bite[>:] !! bastards!
    thanks so much, all, and i will get to popping IMMEDIATELY.. the rest will have to wait until i get home, though.[:(]  (except peroxide because we have that here...)
  • fresh cut onion reduces the swelling and pain of any insect sting. my mom is a HUGE advocate for this remedy, and has used it on me several times when i was a kid. i had been stung about five times by yellow jackets (a type of wasp for those that dont know) she put a piece of onion on each sting, except for the one beside my eye, she used an ice cube and that was the only place that swelled up.

    she's also used it on ant bites. we once discovered a truly bizarre type of ant.. they were large and black and they JUMPED.. yes they were indeed ants.. she was transplanting shrubs when she dug into their nest. she thought she had been stung by yellow jackets since they often nest in the ground, but nope. they were angry jumping ants.

    the onion remedy acts as a poultice i guess. within a few minutes the pain goes away and it never swells. so the next day you wont even know you were bitten.
    my husband is very sensitive to insect stings, when he is bitten they turn into huge open sores... he thought i was mad when i started sticking little slices of onion all over him when he mowed over a yellow jacket nest.... but it worked. he didnt believe it, but it did. the only trouble he had was where he had been stung seven times in one spot on his hand, and the only reason was because he wouldnt sit his butt still long enough to let it work. he had a total of twenty sting all over front and back, and a couple on his ear, even they didnt swell up.

    the trick is to use it right away on any insect sting - it might even work on mosquito bites, never tried it. do it as soon as you're bitten, but it can still work even the next day to draw out poison, though damage has already been done so its still gonna hurt.

    you'll smell like a Wendy burger, but its a small price to pay, i believe.
  • Okay, here is a little southern advice...  Rub tobacco juice on the bites.  My Pawpaw always did this to me when I got bit or stung by something that was VERY painfull.  It works.  I still use this remedy when I get bit/stung by nasty little insects.  Never had the privilege of getting involved with fire ants.  A word or warning... those big black ants can pinch like hell so avoid them whenever possible!
  • i always heard of people using tobacco juice.... i just never could bring myself to be spat uppon lol!!
  • I think that Callie has some good suggestions.  Personally, I usually just suffer though the itching & discomfort.
  • i always heard of people using tobacco juice.... i just never could bring myself to be spat uppon lol!!

    My Pawpaw would just spit his hunk of tobacco out and rub the bite/sting with it!  Never bothered me but I was raised southern![:D]
  • well, that tobacco juice thing is interesting... and my neighbor chews copenhagen like it's goin outta style... the question is, how do i ask my neighbor to spit on my feet??[sm=rotfl.gif]
    seriously, thanks all! 
  • question is, how do i ask my neighbor to spit on my feet??

    Good question!!!  Ummm....  Do you smoke?  If you do you can break open a cig and wet the tocacco and then rub it on your feet.  I've seen my dad do this a few times.

  • My Pawpaw would just spit his hunk of tobacco out and rub the bite/sting with it! Never bothered me but I was raised southern!

    me too but i still took the spit thing as an insult lol
    yeah i knew better, but i was always grossed out by it. i'm not very squeamish but there are certain things that get under my skin
    sticky things like syrup and oranges - i do NOT like my fingers to be sticky even for a second
    and wet sand between my dry toes... wanna see me dance and act like a complete utter buffoon... get something gritty between my toes or in my shoes.
    and of course... spittle.. i can handle the dog licking my face, or horses rubbing their wet oats-covered mouths on my shirt, i even had a new born calf suck on my hand.... but i dare ya to get human spit on me lol

    oh yeah one more thing i heard that works is meat tenderizer.
    i was stung by a wasp once when i was a kid. my step mom put that stuff on it. i couldnt tell if it worked or not though... i was too busy being shocked because she hugged me.....
  • ORIGINAL: Bullymom

    Good question!!! 

    is it gross that the idea of my *hot* neighbor spitting on my feet is actually the most appealing option yet???[sm=devil.gif]