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Chiggers?


Original Post
Derek Rheingans · · Malibu Ca · Joined Feb 2018 · Points: 8

Has anyone gotten chiggers before? Any advice? I don’t have insurance so I have to wait a week to make in to see a doctor. I did a lot of research trying to be most certain it’s not a more severe permanent condition. As I enter into about week 3 since it happened I’m noticing new little blisters popping up randomly still in a similar area . The swelling has gone down enough on my shins to see that I think I may have got some poison oak or poison ivy in the mix too. If I remember right the plant rash can spread but I’m still definitely a little worried. I think I may have multiple sources my rashes. Any suggestions or info would be great. 

Luc-514 · · Montreal, Quebec · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 9,054
Chuck Parks · · Atlanta, GA · Joined Jan 2008 · Points: 2,117

Upper left looks like it could be chiggers. The rest looks more like poison ivy.

Make sure you and your stuff have been well washed with soap and water. Hydrocortisone cream for the chiggers. I like to alternate hydrocortisone and calamine a few times a day for the poison ivy. But everyone has their own favorite poison ivy management routine.

None of that looks serious enough to go to the doctor. As long as the same patch of skin that had a rash and healed doesn't come up with it again, it's probably just your body working it's way through all the BS. Enjoy!

John Barritt · · OKC · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 1,053

Poison ivy..........

Marc801 C · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 65
Chuck Parks wrote:

Upper left looks like it could be chiggers. The rest looks more like poison ivy.

Make sure you and your stuff have been well washed with soap and water. Hydrocortisone cream for the chiggers. I like to alternate hydrocortisone and calamine a few times a day for the poison ivy. But everyone has their own favorite poison ivy management routine.

None of that looks serious enough to go to the doctor. As long as the same patch of skin that had a rash and healed doesn't come up with it again, it's probably just your body working it's way through all the BS. Enjoy!

OP: assuming it's poison ivy, did you wash everything - clothing, bed sheets, etc - that came in contact? Is there any chance you're re-exposing yourself?

Adrienne DiRosario · · Troy, NY · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 0

If it's chiggers you have my sympathy, they're miserable. The only thing to do is wait it out. Hydrocortisone cream is about it. 

stolo · · Shelby, NC · Joined Sep 2016 · Points: 120

Scrub the poison ivy with cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. It dries it out and makes it scab over. 

Marc801 C · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 65
Adrienne DiRosario wrote:

If it's chiggers you have my sympathy, they're miserable. The only thing to do is wait it out. Hydrocortisone cream is about it. 

An old Gunkie trick is to dab each chigger welt with some clear nail polish. It suffocates the little buggers. 

Cory Furrow · · San Francisco, CA · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 25

YGD!!!!  

wing thing · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 80

It looks more like poison oak or ivy than chiggers. The best treatment is a course of oral steroids or an injection of a long acting steroid. Hydrocortisone is your only option if you don't have insurance but it doesn't work as well to resolve your symptoms. 

stolo · · Shelby, NC · Joined Sep 2016 · Points: 120
Marc801 C wrote:

An old Gunkie trick is to dab each chigger welt with some clear nail polish. It suffocates the little buggers. 

Chiggers cannot burrow. Nail polish does nothing. 

Marc801 C · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 65
stolo wrote:

Chiggers cannot burrow. Nail polish does nothing. 

They lay their eggs beneath the skin. The nail polish suffocates the hatchlings; they are what causes the itching and why it lasts over a week. 

Tim Schafstall · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 1,323
Marc801 C wrote:

They lay their eggs beneath the skin. The nail polish suffocates the hatchlings; they are what causes the itching and why it lasts over a week. 

No they don't.  What causes the itching is a reaction to the proteinaceous enzyme the chigger injects to destroy your skin cells so they can ingest the fluids from those cells. Some people have a pretty severe allergic reaction to the enzyme, others not so much.  As noted previously, steroids are about the only thing that can help a severe reaction.

Tylerpratt · · Litchfield, Connecticut · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 35
Marc801 C wrote:

They lay their eggs beneath the skin. The nail polish suffocates the hatchlings; they are what causes the itching and why it lasts over a week. 

You have no idea wtf you're talking about. You're misinformed and just plain wrong.


Chiggers do not burrow. They are actually in the arachnid family and behave exactly like the Tick. They are there to suck your blood. They do not lay eggs under your skin. Nail polish does not relieve itching and since there are no hatchlings it does jack shit. The itch is actually caused from the chemicals they release to make your blood flow better for them to feed. 


what OP has is probably Poison Ivy.  

jedeye · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2009 · Points: 5

My poison ivy relief plan: run it under the hottest water you can stand, without burning yourself, for 15-20 seconds. My understanding is that the heat 'uses up' the histamines (itch-causing chemicals) in that area, giving you some blissfully itch-free hours before the histamines are 'replenished.' 

Tylerpratt · · Litchfield, Connecticut · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 35
jedeye wrote:

My poison ivy relief plan: run it under the hottest water you can stand, without burning yourself, for 15-20 seconds. My understanding is that the heat 'uses up' the histamines (itch-causing chemicals) in that area, giving you some blissfully itch-free hours before the histamines are 'replenished.' 

That or a hair dryer. 

Creed Archibald · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 873
Marc801 C wrote:

They lay their eggs beneath the skin. The nail polish suffocates the hatchlings; they are what causes the itching and why it lasts over a week. 

Tons of people believe this. It's a rural myth. 

corpse · · jtree area · Joined Jun 2006 · Points: 5

the hot water treatment for poison ivy works awesome.  also great for mosquito bites

Eric · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2008 · Points: 10
Marc801 C wrote:

An old Gunkie trick is to dab each chigger welt with some clear nail polish. It suffocates the little buggers. 

There are chiggers at the gunks?

Tylerpratt · · Litchfield, Connecticut · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 35
Eric wrote:

There are chiggers at the gunks?

Yes, some good ole deet does very well with keeping them away. They are also super easy to kill. Their bodies are very very fragile so rubbing around chokepoints on your body every hour or so kills them. Before every climb I rub my harness around my waist, rub around my waist under my harness, armpits and inner thighs. This kills the chiggers and stops the itch.


Chigger bites can and do last weeks. They suck, a lot. 

Marc801 C · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 65
Creed Archibald wrote:

Tons of people believe this. It's a rural myth. 

I stand corrected then. Thank you and Tim for the info. I believe I heard it in the Mohonk Trust (the name before thr Preserve) newsletter some time in the 70’s. 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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