Mite Bites: Warning Signs and Natural Treatments

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Mite Bites: Common Symptoms and Natural Treatments

Mite bites can leave you with intense itchy red rashes on your skin that cause a lot of discomfort. Mites are tiny, microscopic creatures that can inhabit your oil glands, hair follicles and other skin areas. There are a number of species of mites that bite humans and cause red itchy rashes.

Some types of mites are human scabies mites, dust mites, eyelash mites, and chiggers. To treat mite bites naturally, you can use natural treatments that stop the itching and kill off the tiny pests.


The Discomfort Mites Cause

Certain kind of mites like the demodex species of mites live on most humans and become more active if your immune system is weak. Other species of mites, like the itch mite, are passed on by human contact and can cause severe infestations. Contrary to popular belief, mites are not spread by living in unhygienic conditions but are common in crowded environments.

The most typical reactions to mite bites are itching skin, redness around the infestation, and inflammation. However, not all human mites bite and cause skin rashes. Some mites, like the dust mites, cause allergic reactions in some people resulting in wheezing, coughing, and even asthma attacks.

For many people, the inflamed red rashes from mite bites cause great discomfort and embarrassment. In this article, you will find out how to get rid of mite bites using natural home remedies.

Common Types of Mites that Affect Humans

To know the best ways to get rid of mites, it’s important to know what kind of mite bite is causing the inflammatory reaction on your skin or in your respiratory system.

Scabies mite

The human itch mite, or scabies mite, burrows into the top layer of the skin. They cause intense itching when the skin reacts to the mite bites. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, scabies living in the skin will cause a red rash to develop with an intense itch. Scabies mites are passed on by direct contact and are commonly picked up from infested bedding, clothes and furniture.1 The rash usually forms in a straight line where the tiny itchy mite burrows under the skin.

Demodex / Eyelash mites

Two species of Demodex mites, Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis, live in the hair follicles and are found on most humans. According to dermatologists, Demodex folliculorum mites are commonly found on your face and in the eyelashes and can be a reason for irritation, itching, and scaling of the eyelids. That is why they are sometimes called eyelash mites.2 Demodex mites can also infest areas around the cheeks, forehead, nose, and ears.

Dust mite

Dust mites live in dust and can cause allergic respiratory reactions in humans. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, dust mites thrive in humid, warm environments and are common around the home. Dust mites feed on tiny flakes of human skin that we shed daily.3 Dust mites don’t bite humans, but they can cause sneezing, itchy eyes, stuffy nose, and a cough.

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Other Types of Mites

There are some less common types of mites that can affect humans.

Bird mites

Bird mites live on pigeons, chickens, house sparrows, and other wild birds. According to the University of Sydney and Westmead Hospital in Australia, bird mites can live away from their host for around a week. They can easily find their way into homes through cracks, AC units, nests close to windows, or be carried in if you work near poultry. Bird mites bite humans to feed on blood, but they don’t live on humans like itch mites.4

Rodent mites

Rodent mites live on mice and rats and they will readily bite humans. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, there are 3 types of rodent mites that affect humans. They can cause painful skin irritations and severe itching.5

Chiggers

The larvae of chiggers can give you a nasty bite and cause red rashes that have an intense itch. Chiggers usually live in the soil and you can pick them up if you are walking in the park or playing sports on grassy areas. According to Dr. William Blahd on WebMD, chiggers most commonly bite in the late spring, summer, and early fall.6

Symptoms of Mite Infestation

There are some common symptoms that you have been bitten by pesky mites. Not all people will experience the same symptoms and in some people, the mite bites cause no reaction. Because mites are tiny and can best be seen under the microscope, it’s important to know what to look out for.

Some common symptoms of mite bites are:

  • Itchy skin with mild to severe itching.
  • Rash
  • Sores
  • Thick crusts on the skin
  • Hive-like rash
  • Clusters of bumps that blister

Mite bites cause itchy skin rashes

Mite bites cause severe itching which is very often more severe at night time when the mites are more active.

The American Academy of Dermatology says that scabies mites can cause a rash with bumps that look like small pimples or even eczema.7

Demodex mites cause inflammation around the affected skin area. According to the Indian Journal of Dermatology, Demodex mites can cause rosacea, dermatitis, and be a cause of hair loss. For example, eyelash mites can cause red eyelids and loss of eyelashes.8

Respiratory symptoms caused by mites

Most domestic mites, not just dust mites, can cause respiratory problems which result in coughing, wheezing, sneezing, and cold-like symptoms.

According to the journal Parasites & Vectors, mites are inhaled and continue to live in the lungs and gastrointestinal system and cause a condition called acariasis. Acariasis is a term for a rash, caused by mites. This can cause irritation and itching and can be responsible for asthma, shortness of breath, severe cough, and headaches.9

Parasites & Vectors also reported that when mites enter the intestinal system, they can cause diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fatigue.9

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The Best Natural Treatments for Mite Bites

To get rid of the intense itching that mite bites cause and to reduce swelling and inflamed skin, there are many excellent natural treatments you can use. Some of these home remedies for bites caused by mites are also antimicrobial and will help to kill off the mites.

Tea tree oil for mite bites

Tea tree oil can help to reduce itching and inflammation caused by mite bites thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. Tea tree oil also has insecticide properties and is a helpful home remedy to destroy mites and get rid of them for good.

In an article entitled “The Therapeutic Potential of Tea Tree Oil for Scabies”, scientists reported that tea tree oil has acaricidal effects against mites. It is useful for treating crusted scabies and also in preventing secondary infections from developing. The researchers also found that tea tree oil helps to reduce severe itching caused by mite bites.10

The researchers also found that tea tree oil was effective in killing off all dust mites and a 5% topical application of tea tree oil was more effective at killing off scabies mites than conventional treatments like permethrin (often recommended to treat scabies). Added to this is the fact that mites don’t become resistant to tea tree oil, so you can see why tea tree oil is excellent for eradicating mites and treating their bites.

Tea tree oil is a unique essential oil because you can put a drop or two directly on a small area of skin. To get relief from an itchy insect bite, dab a drop of tea tree oil on the inflamed skin for quick relief. If you have a sensitive skin, or need to apply it on larger areas of your body to stop it from itching, dilute the tea tree oil with a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, sweet almond oil or jojoba oil.

You can also make your own anti-mite body wash to get rid of an infestation of mites. Here is how to do it:

  • Add 30 drops of tea tree oil to every fl. ounce (30 ml) of natural lotion, natural butter, oil or moisturizer (this will make a 5% tea tree oil topical application).
  • Apply the tea tree oil mixture to your skin every day.
  • Continue applying the tea tree oil remedy until all symptoms of mites and scabies are gone completely.

Coconut oil

The soothing effect of coconut oil along with its antibacterial properties make this an excellent home remedy for mite bites. Virgin coconut oil will also protect your infected skin to prevent any secondary skin infection from scratching the itchy rash.

A review of the medicinal properties of coconut oil in the Natural Medicine Journal found that coconut oil is effective for treating many skin conditions. The fatty acids in coconut oil help to treat dermatitis, psoriasis, and prevent dermal infections.11

The journal Dermatitis reported that virgin coconut oil was an effective remedy for itchy, dry skin conditions.12

To use coconut oil to soothe itchy skin rashes caused by mites, this is what you should do:

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  • Mix 2-3 drops of tea tree oil with 1 tbsp. virgin coconut oil.
  • Apply to the affected skin in the morning and in the evening.
  • Continue applying the coconut oil remedy until the itch mites are completely gone.

Neem oil

A great and effective natural remedy for getting rid of scabies mites and treating mite bites is neem oil. Although neem oil has many benefits, it has a very pungent smell which repels mites and other insects.

The efficacy of neem oil for combating mites has been proven by scientific research. A study from 2014 found that by applying neem oil directly on the affected skin area, scabies mites were effectively killed off and the infestation was cured.13  

The journal Tropical and Geographical Medicine reported that a combination of neem oil and turmeric was able to cure mite infestation in 3 – 15 days in 97% of people who used it.14

To get rid of mites and prevent them biting your skin, massage neem oil directly onto the affected skin area. Leave the remedy to go to work for 10-20 minutes and then shower to get rid of the strong neem oil smell. Repeat the neem oil treatment daily until you get rid of mites for good.

You can also make your own remedy for mite bites by combining neem oil and turmeric. Here is how to make the cream:

  • Mix neem oil with ground turmeric to form a thick paste.
  • Apply the home remedy to the itchy skin 2 times a day to help soothe itching and get rid of the mites.
  • Leave for 10 minutes before rinsing off.
  • Repeat until you no longer have any symptoms of mites.

Please remember that turmeric can easily stain fabrics and other items.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera is an amazing product for keeping healthy skin. Aloe vera is also a natural remedy for getting rid of mite bites. Aloe vera is great for your skin because it contains vitamins, enzymes, and minerals essential for skin health.

A review on the healing effect of aloe vera on the skin found that it helps to moisturize the skin and it contains antiseptic properties. The anti-inflammatory activity of aloe vera helps to reduce itching and swelling.15 In fact, the University of Maryland reports that aloe vera is superior to 1% hydrocortisone cream which is often prescribed to reduce skin inflammation.16

A small study found that aloe vera was just as effective as benzoate lotion (another popular treatment for scabies) in treating scabies mites.17

To use aloe vera for soothing itchy mite bites, you should apply pure aloe vera gel directly to the inflamed, itchy skin. Use the remedy 2-3 times a day to keep your skin hydrated and itch-free.

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To boost the power of aloe vera in completely eliminating mites from your skin, add 2-3 drops of tea tree essential oil to 1 tbsp. aloe vera. Apply 2-3 times a day to get rid of mites for good.

Applying aloe vera is also good for treating spider bites and cockroaches bites.

Essential Oils to Get Rid of Mite Bites

You can help enhance the healing properties of coconut oil, neem oil, and aloe vera by adding some essential oils. All the essential oils mentioned in this article have proven success at eradicating mite infestations.

Remember that essential oils are too powerful to be used directly on the skin (with the exception of tea tree oil and lavender oil which can be applied directly on a small area of skin such as a spot treatment). To use these essential oils to treat mite bites, you should mix 2-3 drops of essential oil in 1 tbsp. coconut oil or other carrier oil.

Pregnant women and children shouldn’t use essential oils unless directed otherwise by a professional aromatherapist or other medical personnel. Also please note that essential oils should not be used in areas where they can come into contact with the eyes. If your Demodex mite infection is in the eyelid or eyelash area, please do not use essential oils as a topical treatment.

Here are some of the best essential oils to use as natural treatments for mite bites.

Clove oil

Clove oil is an extremely effective treatment for getting rid of scabies mites. The insecticidal activity of clove oil is due to a compound called eugenol.

The journal PLoS One reported that clove oil is better for treating scabies than permethrin (a common pharmaceutical treatment for scabies). It was also found that there were fewer side effects when using clove oil and it was better tolerated. It can also be used to treat colonies of mites that have become drug-resistant.18

Camphor oil

If you are plagued by Demodex mites, then use camphor oil for an effective home remedy. Camphor oil is a natural insecticide that can repel mites. It is also a great home remedy for reducing itchiness and inflammation.

A study from 2003 found that camphor oil completely killed off all mite infestations at a concentration of at least 50%.19

Rosemary oil

Rosemary oil is another great essential oil for getting rid of bites caused by mites. You can mix a few drops of rosemary essential oil with some coconut oil to soothe infested skin and help destroy mites.

The journal Annual Research & Review in Biology reported that rosemary oil was effective at killing off scabies mites.20

If a mite infestation has caused your hair to thin or fall out, rosemary oil can also help treat hair loss.

Anise seed oil

You can treat scabies mites and head lice by using anise seed oil as a natural home remedy.

The book “Herbal Medicine” stated that anise seeds have antibacterial and insecticidal properties when used on the skin. The essential oil from anise seeds can be used to treat scabies.21

Oregano Oil

Mix a few drops of oregano oil with some coconut oil to help treat scabies mites naturally.20 You can use oregano oil to also help get rid of Demodex mites by applying it to the affected area.

Read my other related articles:
1. How to Detect and Eliminate Eyelash Mites (Demodex Mites)
2. The Top 8 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Scabies
3. Itching All Over the Body – Causes and Natural Treatments
4. Effective Home Remedies for Lice (Based on Research)

Article Sources:
  1. AAD. Scabies: overview
  2. DermNetNZ. Demodex.
  3. AAFA. Dust mite allergy.
  4. Medent USYD. Bird Mites
  5. IDPH State Il. Mites affecting humans.
  6. WebMD. How to prevent chigger bites.
  7. AAD. Scabies: signs and symptoms.
  8. Indian J Dermatol. 2014 Jan-Feb; 59(1): 60–66.
  9. Parasit Vectors. 2014; 7: 411.
  10. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2016 Feb 3; 94(2): 258–266.
  11. NaturalMedicineJournal. Treatment of dermal infections with coconut oil.
  12. Dermatitis. 2004 Sep;15(3):109-16.
  13. Vet Parasitol. 2014 Aug 29;204(3-4):323-9.
  14. Trop Geogr Med. 1992 Jan;44(1-2):178-81.
  15. Indian J Dermatol. 2008; 53(4): 163–166.
  16. UMM. Aloe.
  17. Phytother Res. 2009 Oct;23(10):1482-4
  18. PLoS One. 2010; 5(8): e12079.
  19. J Egypt Soc Parasitol. 2003 Apr;33(1):47-53.
  20. Ann Res Rev Bio. 2014; 4(12):2027-2036.
  21. NCBI NLM. Herbal treatment for dermatologic disorders
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17 Responses to Mite Bites: Warning Signs and Natural Treatments

  1. Judy Northcutt says:

    For oak mite bites have tried aloe vera, coconut oil, fluouracil, neosporin, and triameinolone acetonite creams, as well as Aveeno for bug bites, peroxide…nothing has worked. Will try the tea tree oil.

  2. Ava says:

    I’ve had them for 12years. But didn’t know what they were, I’ve tried hydrogen peroxide,neosporin,white nettle oil. All those did was make them worse, they “ran” to previously unaffected pores and also released a watery sticky substance when they’re aggravated with chemicals. Every time I get a huge blistery painful rash when trying to kill them. I’m at my wits end I’m heavily scarred from picking and pulling them out of my upper arms on both sides.

    • Judy Powell says:

      However it only makes them where you can see them to get rid of them. I’ve ordered pure tee tree oil last night and I’m going to try just that and water. NO PESTICIDES are able to kill them and that is according to scientific research article I read last night. I lathered my dog with green olive oil after washing him with tea tree oil shampoo and coconut oil conditioner and haven’t seen anymore bugs on him though.

      • Judy Powell says:

        Oh omg. So I rubbed tea tree oil on my dog and my step-son’s dog today and had an open cut on my pinkie and it has eggs and babies now. I’ve been picking them out for HOURS. Hoping I got them all out. Ugh. This is an absolute nightmare. Seriously.

        • Chris says:

          Do NOT rub tea tree on your dog or cat, it is very dangerous and can paralyze them permanently! It is toxic for them.

  3. Don Novak says:

    I’ve got a friend that has had Oak Mites for around eight months now and is at the end of her rope. She cannot go out in public and the doctors do not know what to do to rid them from her. They’re everywhere, in her hair and all over her body. She has now become suicidal and cries all the time, I’m very worried about her.
    Hopefully you can provide the treatment required for their removal.
    Thank you in advance for your help in this dire emergency.
    Don Novak

    • Jenny Hills, Medical Writer and Researcher says:

      Hi Don, the problem with oak tree mites is that they can enter a house through open windows or screens and bite people inside, and they can also bite people while working outdoors in the garden. I’ve read that spraying the oak tree is not an effective oak mite control, as the spray doesn’t penetrate the galls where the mites live inside. The best thing to do is be careful and protecting yourself by staying away from oak trees with galls toward the end of summer, and when you work in the garden or walk near the trees, shower and wash your clothes in hot water when you come home. When bitten by these mites, I would probably start using tea tree oil and/or neem oil mixed with carrier oil such as coconut oil as per the instructions in the article, and applying the solution on the affected skin areas until all symptoms of mites and scabies are gone completely. Your friend can also add a few drops of the essential oils to her shampoo and wash her hair with it. I really hope it helps your friend.

    • Mindy says:

      My mom melts suppositories and Vaseline in the microwave. Then spreads it on the bite areas. Then when it’s time to bathe she washes it off with Dawn dish detergent. Then the next time she mixes Icy Hot and Vic’s together. And covers the areas. Then when it’s time to bathe she rinses it off with Dawn again. She is diligent. In a short period of time the mites are almost gone. She is 80 years old. I know it’s gross, but the dead mites come out of her nose every time she blows her nose. But every day the mite activity gets less and less. These household products smother the mites and their eggs. Give it a try and keep at it. Hope this helps. Hang in there. Good luck!

      • Mona Miller says:

        Itchy oak mites do not lay eggs they are born as live fully grown mites. They do not live on you like scabies do or lay eggs on you like chiggers do. How ever their bite is a venom like a scorpion sting. It is the nuerotoxin in their bite that causes the rash and the blisters. I am allegric to their bite and nearly died three years ago. No one is doing any research on them at this time as there is no funding for it. The only study that has been done is in this study from penn state. https://extension.psu.edu/oak-leaf-itch-mite.

    • Mindy says:

      My name is Mindy. Scroll to the bottom of the comments to see my name. See what worked for my 80 year old mother. Fast. It’s all household products or over the counter. Not necessarily natural or organic. But it is totally working. If your friend wants relief, and nothing else is working, they need to try what my mom is doing. Good luck!

  4. Mindy says:

    My 80 year old mom recently got infested from having a fan in the windows in the summer. It has been horrible for her. I found this site to look for remedies to give her relief. She has tried a few of the things you all have suggested. And she is almost mite free in a short period of time. A lot of you suggested cream for hemorrhoids. Also Dawn dish detergent and Icy Hot. I want to share something she discovered on her own. She didn’t have hemorrhoid cream. But she has suppositories. They are waxy. She was very patient. She would sit and rub them on the areas she felt mites. They clog your pores. Which smothers the mites. They started dying off and would come out her nose when she would blow her nose. Then at night she would bathe in Sawn to remove the waxie suppository film. The next day she would cover the bites with Icy Hot and Vic’s salve combined. Then at night she would rinse it off with the Dawn. Then she started melting the suppositories in the microwave and mixing in Vaseline then putting it on the bite areas. I know it’s gross. But the mites were vastly dying. They continue to come out of her nose. But they are dead. Every day they are less and less. The bite areas are healing up. So melt the suppositories with Vaseline and spread on the areas one day. Wash it off with Dawn at night. The next day mix Icy Hot and Vi’s and spread it on the areas. Then wash it off with Dawn at night. She has been diligent and the mites are almost gone in such a short period of time. My brother bought her a spray from an exterminator for her carpets and it has worked so awesome. It’s called Household Insect Control. By the company name Bonide. It’S for indoor and outdoor use. Bonide Products. 6301 Sutliff Rd. Oriskany, NY 13424 My brother did buy it locally though. I so help this info helps someone. Because your info has helped my mom. And she is almost mite free. I hope her routine made sence. It was trial and error. But she figured it out thanks to you all. Hang in there. You need to smother those little monsters. Good luck.

  5. kaz says:

    The best way to get rid of mites, scabies etc is sulpher powder and sticky tape..Cover the bites areas in sulpher,leave on over night, then the next day after you shower, use sticky tape over your body to remove the mites then reapply the sulpher..It’s a bit drying but it works almost instantly..Put some on your mattress as well under your sheets and it kills all mites..You can buy it cheaply on ebay…I tried everything to get rid of mite bites and sulpher is the only thing that worked.

  6. Herman says:

    Has anyone ever dealt with straw mites

  7. Mona Miller says:

    It is plain to see no one here knows what their talking about. First the oak mite does not lay eggs. they give live birth. They do not live on you like other mites do. It is the toxin in the bite that causes the rash. You can’t see them and by the time you know you have been bitten their gone. They do not like the taste of humans. The very strong neurotoxin in their bite is the cause of the rash when the body tries to fight off the venom in their bite. Keep in mind a single bite can take down a pray that is 160,000 times their size. If you are picking off mites you might look at the bed bug or the chigger.

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