Wednesday, June 12, 2024

No See Um Bite Treatment: 10 Tips to Consider + Related Questions

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When dealing with a no see um situation, what is your first line of defense? What do you do to soothe the inflammation that occurs?

Do you simply wait it out, or rush for your clear nail polish to dab to the area as some sources recommend doing?

Whatever no see bite treatment routine you adhere to, it’s likely insufficient. It doesn’t pack the punch you want.

In this article, I share with you at least 10 no see um bite treatment options.

10 No See Um Bite Treatment Options

As a full disclaimer, it’s important to consider that a no see um bite treatment option may have varying effects. In hindsight, a method might work for you but have the opposite effect on someone else.

Keep at it.

If one method doesn’t provide the overall result you need, try something else, or combine options.

Let’s jump into those no see um bite treatment options you have at your disposal.

1. Wash the Area

No see um bites irritate the skin in some individuals. This may lead to an allergic reaction.

What causes this allergic reaction or hypersensitivity in some individuals?

Using equines, researchers were able to determine that midge hypersensitivity is linked to the salvia excreted during feeding sessions. Without a qualm, these salivary secretions also affect humans.

In fact, salivary proteins are responsible for the itching, vasodilation, and edema some people experience after being brutally bitten by no see ums.

Knowing the role salivary proteins play in much of the untoward effects experienced after being bitten, washing the area may help. Of course, this doesn’t remove the salivary that has already been injected into the skin, but washing the area with antibacterial soap may be a good place to start.

This brings us to another no see um bite treatment that’s worth exploring.

2. Wipe with Alcohol

Alcohol is a known cleaning agent with bactericidal properties. If you choose not to wash the area but have alcohol and a cotton pad close by, this is another effective option.

Alcohol also has a mild soothing action when dried. This may be useful for reducing the initial ‘itch’ associated with no see um bites.

3. Benadryl

Once the salivary protein is introduced into the body when the skin is penetrated by no see ums, it is identified as a foreign substance.

Whatever is seen as foreign to the body is met with great resistance. Hence, the surrounding tissues of the affected area will release histamines to increase the body’s immunity.

Histamines are also pruritogens, which are responsible for the excruciating itching felt after being bitten.

How do we combat these symptoms? Benadryl.

Benadryl is a known agent that reduces histamine production. It is available in oral form or as a topical cream. Many people take the pills, but the cream does work, too. These should assist with localized pain and itching.

If you aren’t accustomed to taking oral Benadryl, it’s best to consult your general practitioner, especially if you’re already taking certain medications.

4. Ivarest Poison Ivy Cream

Like Benadryl, this is another product with antihistamine properties. Use it for controlling the incessant itch that accompanies no see um bites.

Plus, Ivarest Poison Ivy Cream contains analgesic properties that are soothing to pain.

5. Hydrocortisone Cream

Hydrocortisone is a product that targets itching. It’s available in various strengths and can be applied locally to provide relief. It works fast and some hydrocortisone creams integrate aloe vera, which strengthens the product’s potency.

The best part is, the cream is indicated for skin irritation caused by insect bites, so there’s no questioning its effectiveness.

6. Apple Cider Vinegar

Do you prefer to use simple products that are just sitting in your kitchen cabinets? Apple cider vinegar is a no see um bite treatment worth considering.

Apple cider vinegar contains a potent force to reckon with called acetic acid. According to research, the acetic acid in vinegar may be used as a local antiseptic to disinfect wounds.

The acetic acid in vinegar may also induce an antinociception effect, which translates to the numbing of pain.

7. Vitamin C Oil Capsules

In one study, Vitamin C is seen as an effective option against allergies. In fact, the ascorbate of Vitamin C “prevents excessive inflammation”.

The ability of Vitamin C to prevent inflammation is useful in reducing the swelling, pain, and redness produced when a severe reaction to no see um bites occurs.

The best thing about this no see um bite treatment is that you can take Vitamin C internally, but also break oil capsules and apply to localized, affected areas.

8. Lemon Juice

Lemon is a natural antihistamine. It can be applied directly to the area or consumed in small shots or water for those who believe lemon juice is too strong in its natural form.

9. Aloe Vera Gel

You might be accustomed to using aloe vera gel to nourish the hair and skin, but you may not have thought about its ability to soothe irritated skin.

Aloe vera gel has a soothing effect on the skin. The salicylic acid component of the gel also endows it with antibacterial properties. It’s a suitable proponent for cleansing the area of salivary protein and reducing pruritus.

10. Witch Hazel

Witch hazel contains tannins that constrict the skin. It can be used for inflammation, including swelling and redness.

These no see um bite treatment options work singly, on their own. However, combining treatments work better and will accelerate the rate at which your symptoms are remedied.

What Should I Do If I Have a No See Um Bite?

If you are bitten by no see ums, resist the urge to scratch or pick at the area. This could worsen the situation. The first recourse to take after being bitten is to wash or cleanse the area.

Washing with an antibacterial soap is sufficient or wiping the area with alcohol and a cotton pad. After cleansing the area, you may follow up with a topical cream like Benadryl Itching Stopping Cream or Benadryl pills.

What Happens If You Get Bitten by a No See Um?

When bitten by no see ums, they inject salivary proteins into the skin. Depending on the person involved, hypersensitivity may result and create a reaction.

This reaction, in turn, may induce swelling, redness, pain, and, in severe situations, welts and blisters. Note, these issues aren’t always the case for everyone. Some individuals will experience these situations, while others won’t.

What are the Treatments for No See Um Bites?

There are many no see um bite treatment options available. You may choose to use simple home remedies like witch hazel and apple cider vinegar to clean the area and ameliorate itching.

For more severe cases of no see um bites, however, you may opt to combine the use of an oral antihistamine. Benadryl and topical treatments like hydrocortisone are good options to explore.

What is the Difference Between No See Um Bites and Mosquito Bites?

No see um bites differ from mosquitoes in various ways. No see um bites, for example, usually appear in clusters, while mosquito bites are more spaced out. In essence, no see ums are mainly pool feeders, while mosquitoes feed through a capillary (albeit some do feed in clusters).

One of the easiest ways to differentiate mosquito bites from no see ums is to look at the spacing or situation of the bites. Mosquito bites are naturally apart from each other, while no see um bites appear close in proximity in clusters, as mentioned before.

No See Um Bite Treatment, Conclusion

No see um bites aren’t easy to deal with. Most people have had success using a combination of methods, instead of a single option. If you find that the bites you’ve sustained aren’t getting any better, your skin could be hypersensitive.

After upping your no see um bite treatment regime, if nothing changes, it’s in your best interest to consult your practitioner and let him know what’s happening and what you’ve tried.

Samantha Burris
Samantha Burris
Samantha is a writer with an unhealthy fetish for books and a love-hate relationship with insects, bugs, and creepy-crawlies. She enjoys scouting YouTube for vegan videos, and when she’s not chilling with hubby, she’s masterminding the ultimate plan to take over the blogosphere with her wits, creativity, and treasure trove of knowledge. If you’re looking for a conversational and professional scribe, with the ability to compose content across various spectrums, Samantha is your go-to creative.


  1. No see um bites can be very painful, sharp and persistent. I’ve tried alcohol, witch hazel, tea tree oil, calamine lotion and a mixture of concoctions. However, the pain still persists for minutes. I found a product called “Licefree Spray”. Not only will it relive the pain pretty quick, it will kill any no see um still on your body. The main ingredient is sodium chloride which is safe on the skin and dries out insects.

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