If you've ever had a particularly itchy bug bite and scratched it raw, it may have left an unsightly scar. The best way to deal with scars is to prevent them by avoiding the temptation to scratch and applying moisturizing itch-relief cream. However, once you have the scar, you have several options for attempting to remove it. Some minor bug-bite scars may disappear with deep moisturizing and encouragement of new skin growth. Other more severe scars will require the assistance of a dermatologist.
Moisturize the bug bite scars regularly with a heavy-duty lotion, such as cocoa butter or shea butter. Avoid scented lotions, which may irritate the skin.
Exfoliate the bug bite scars daily. Rub them firmly with a hard loofah or a liquid scrub in circular motions. Most medical scar treatments rely on removing the upper layer of skin to encourage new skin growth with pigmentation that matches your natural coloring. Home exfoliation accomplishes the same basic goal. Moisturize your skin directly after exfoliating.
Apply over-the-counter ointments, such as vitamin C serum or alpha hydroxy acid, which removes the top layer of skin to encourage new skin growth. Lemon juice contains both vitamin C and alpha hydroxy acid and may be an adequate substitution for some cases.
Massage the scars and exercise regularly, even if that means taking a brisk 15-minute walk, to encourage blood flow to your legs. Proper circulation will keep nutrients flowing to the skin cells around your scars, giving them the tools they need for repairs.
Eat a diet rich in vitamins A, C and E, as well as zinc, omega-3 fatty acids and polyunsaturated fats. These nutrients are vital for skin health, and they can encourage collagen growth, which keeps skin looking young and fresh.
Wear silicone scar treatment sheets for at least 12 hours per day over a period of several weeks. These sheets are available over-the-counter, and some clinical trials have demonstrated that they can be effective in substantially reducing the appearance of scars.
Consult a dermatologist about professional treatments, such as a chemical peel, dermabrasion, surgical removal, laser treatment or steroid injections.
Some websites may claim that natural home remedies such as honey, tomato juice, mint, garlic and cucumbers will remove your scars. While there may be some truth in these claims, no scientific evidence exists to support them.
- How to Get Rid of Things; How to Get Rid of Scars; Adam Bjerk
- "Science Direct"; Silicone Gel: A New Treatment for Burn Scars and Contractures; K. Perkins, et. al.; April 27, 1982
- "Dermatologic Surgery"; A Review of the Biologic Effects, Clinical Efficacy, and Safety of Silicone Elastomer Sheeting for Hypertrophic and Keloid Scar Treatment and Management; Brian Berman, et. al.; August 2, 2007
- "Natural News"; The Top Five Nutrients for Healthy Skin; Mike Adams; April 4, 2007