Stinging nettles are small plants whose leaves are covered with small silky hairs. This plant is highly valuable in treating many diseases such as arthritis, gout, eczema and anemia. They are even very valuable as nutritious plants. However, you have to be very careful while harvesting the leaves of this plant. It is essential to wear gloves to avoid contact with the spines present on the leaves. Yet, the skin irritants in the silky hairs which are present on the leaves are lost after boiling and they are very safe even to touch or consume. These silky hairs contain chemicals namely histamine and formic acid that irritate the human skin.
If you or your kid accidentally rubs the leaves over the skin, it will lead to intense itching. The itching is due to body defense mechanism that fights against these chemicals. The reaction develops within an hour after the contact with an allergen. These rashes can be either chronic or acute in nature. In cases of chronic rashes that needs a long time treatment; it is highly recommended to take medical advice without disregarding it. Some people may even find it hard to sleep at nights. The acute type of nettle rashes can cured very easily with the help of some simple home remedies. Kids may find it difficult even to bear the pain of acute rashes. For this reason, it is recommended to keep them away from the bushes where this stinging nettle grows.
The following are some simple remedies to treat stinging nettle rashes:
• Baking soda is an effective remedy to treat stinging nettles. Make a thick paste of baking soda by mixing with water and apply it at the affected area. Take care not to make the paste too watery, the thickness of the paste should be sufficient enough to apply at the affected area. Allow the paste to remain on the skin for about thirty minutes. If the child’s skin is very sensitive, the pain could last for a long time. It is safe to apply the paste thrice a day until the pain is relieved completely.
• If you are on a picnic spot, then it is hard to have baking soda. In such cases, search for the plants named jewelweed. These are very active at relieving the pain caused by the stinging nettle. Generally, these plants grow in the surroundings of stinging nettle. Rubbing the leaves of this plant gives relief from the irritating itchy painful rash caused by stinging nettle.
• If both the above solutions are not feasible to use, we have a best remedy for stinging nettle. As said above, the rash is caused due to the acidic formic acid present in the stinging nettle. So, application of anything basic in quality will relieve the pain. Human saliva is basic in nature and can be applied at the affected area for immediate relief if no other solutions are available.
Lastly, if you do not find relief with the above measures, you can consult your physician. They will generally prescribe an antihistamine or ibuprofen or a Tylenol to provide relief from the throbbing pain and itching.