Packing and lugging half way around the world, over-the-counter remedies for insect bites is a waste of your time and effort according to new research.
It has been found that there is little evidence to prove that non-prescription remedies have any effect on bites.
Research suggests that msot victims of home-bred midges, mosquitoes, flies, bedbugs and fleas will get better without any treatment at all.
Evidence published in the Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin claims the bite remedies often packed by holidaymakers are unnecessary in many cases.
However, when bites cause an infection or anaphylactic shock then medical treatment is needed, the DTB said.
Antihistamine tablets, and steroid creams and tablets are widely recommended to calm itching but there is little evidence to back this up. The exception was people with eczema, added the bulletin.
It said creams with painkillers or anaesthetics are only ‘marginally effective’ but there is some evidence dilute ammonium solution may relieve itching or burning.
DTB deputy editor David Phizackerley said: ‘Our message is that most insect bites will clear up without treatment.’