Have No Fear, Summer Home Remedies Are Here!

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With the joys of Summer come a few risks that prove to be no fun for anyone. Long days in the sun can quickly turn into a bad sunburn, while playing in the park or even your own backyard can lead to bee stings or poison ivy. But you certainly can’t let these risks get in the way of having a fun-filled summer outdoors! So, don’t stress because we found some simple, cheap, and easy remedies to help soothe you or your child if you come across any of these common summer maladies!

Sunburn

            We’ve all been there. You put sunscreen on before all of the day’s activities begin and next thing you know it’s hours later, you’ve forgotten to re-apply, only to get home and realize the collateral damage. Luckily for us, all we need is some baking soda and water, white vinegar, milk, and moisturizer in order to be feeling better in no time!

            Sunburns are categorized by their ability to dry out and inflame the skin, causing pain, discomfort and itchiness. Applying a mixture of baking soda and water to the effected site and then letting it air-dry will help decrease the level of inflammation. Similarly, soak a cloth in milk, water and ice and then apply it to the burn for about 15-20 minutes and then repeat every few hours to decrease inflammation. For the pain and uncomfortable heat, a cup of white vinegar mixed with cool water will do the trick and bring temporary relief. The most important thing to remember throughout this entire process is the importance of moisturizing in order to prevent peeling and permanent skin damage. A little secret to make the moisturizing experience more pleasant? Stick the moisturizer in the fridge before applying it!

Bee Stings

            Bees are tricky. You don’t want to make it angry and swat it away, but nobody likes the constant buzzing in their ear while you’re just trying to enjoy the summer weather. If one does happen to get a little feisty and sting you, there are plenty of options to make sure you treat the sting properly.

            The first steps, no matter what home remedy you decide to use, includes removal of the stinger and disinfecting the site. This is crucial to ensure that the sting heals properly and you avoid possible future infection.

            Once this is done, just like a sunburn, baking soda mixed with water, as well as applying vinegar to the site, will help both with decreasing inflammation and reducing the pain or discomfort respectively. Raw honey (how ironic) is another solution to help with inflammation and preventing possible future infection, just apply it right to the sting!

            Quick disclaimer: using any of these home remedies does not necessarily mean that you are in the clear from visiting your doctor! Keep an eye out for symptoms of an allergic reaction such as throat tightening, abdominal pain, vomiting, cramps, or difficulty breathing. If any of these occur, head to your doctor immediately!

Poison Ivy

            Poison ivy is something many people don’t know they’ve come across until hours or even days later. The most important thing to keep in mind with poison ivy is that you want to prevent future infection as much as possible. In order to do this, you want to use remedies that will alleviate itch and the presence of the boils so that they don’t accidentally open and take in unwanted bacteria that will lead to future problems.

            Such a remedy includes a mixture of lemon juice and honey applied with a cotton swab to the rash. The honey will draw out some of the fluid from the boils, drying them out and making it harder for you to accidentally pop them and expose them to infection. In addition to this, a mixture of white vinegar and water will help relieve itching and also prevent possible infection.

            Finally, just like with bee stings, make sure to keep an eye out for worsening side effects. For example, a minor fever is normal, but if it persists or even worsens, see your doctor immediately.

 

Kaitlyn Hildenbrand is a 22 year old senior at Queens College in Flushing, New York. She will be graduating in the Fall of 2018 with a Bachelor's Degree in English and a minor in Comparative Literature. Kaitlyn was born and raised on Long Island, but loves traveling and is looking forward to exploring that passion further once she graduates. Her dream is to eventually publish her own series of novels based on her traveling experiences.

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