How to treat summer insect bites with FSA-eligible products

Is there anything better than enjoying the great outdoors with your family and friends? Summer allows you to enjoy all of your favorite outdoor activities, but you'll also be sharing the environment with the mosquitoes, bees, ticks and millions of other insects that can make life a bit more harrowing.

Insect bites are a fact of life for people of all ages during the summer months, ranging from the annoying itch of a mosquito bite to the more serious implications of tick bites and insect-borne diseases. Luckily, if you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), your benefit can cover a wide range of products that can treat insect bites effectively.

Here are a few of the most common insect bites you'll encounter this summer and how to treat them with FSA eligible products!

Bee stings

While bee stings can be serious business for those with a significant allergy, for most people they are a painful inconvenience that can linger for several days. In the event of a bee sting, you should first check to see if the stinger is still impacted in the skin, and if so, it should be removed with tweezers found inmost standard first aid kits. Clean the area with soap and water and then apply hydrocortisone cream to the affected area to break down any remaining venom that could be present. Finally, use a cold pack to reduce any swelling that may be present.

Tick bites

Ticks are a common nuisance throughout the U.S., and typically live in tall grasses, leaf piles, trees and shrubs. While the vast majority of tick bites are harmless, some of these insects may be carriers of potentially serious conditions like Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and many more. Ticks typically attach themselves to a host and will remain impacted in the skin until they are removed. If you spot a tick, start by removing the insect with tweezers and lifting straight up from the head to prevent any parts from remaining impacted. Clear the area with rubbing alcohol and treat with hydrocortisone cream. If you begin to experience advanced symptoms or strange rashes on the affected area, seek medical attention immediately.

Mosquito bites

Much like ticks, mosquitoes have the potential to carry a wide range of serious diseases like West Nile virus, encephalitis and many more, but the vast majority of the time mosquito bites are major nuisances that linger as itchy red dots on your skin for days on end without proper treatment. When you notice a mosquito bite on your skin, start by applying an antihistamine cream(requires a prescription for FSA reimbursement) to control the itching and swelling that will occur in the period after the bite. Additionally, using a cold pack on the bite can help reduce inflammation and even lessen the itch.

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