Insect Bites - What To Do About Them In Children

Insect Bites - What To Do About Them In Children

An insect bite is usually a red itchy bump. There may be a blister in the middle. Sometimes insect bites are painful (especially spider bites) as well as itchy.


How do you get insect bites?

Bites come from insects such as mosquitos, fleas or spiders.

What should I do if my child gets an insect bite?

  • check and clean the bite every day
  • wash the bite with cool water
  • keep your child's nails short and clean
  • to help your child stop itching, try soaking in a cool bath, or putting calamine lotion or aloe vera on the bites
  • treat pets for fleas
  • put mosquito nets around beds, put insect screens on windows and close windows at night
  • wear close-fitting cotton sleeves or pyjamas
  • try children's insect repellent
  • go to the doctor if the insect bite is near the eye

What should I do if the insect bite gets worse?

Go to the doctor if any of these things happen:

  • the insect bite is near the eye 
  • the bites last more than 2 weeks
  • the red, swollen area keeps getting bigger or more painful
  • there is pus in the bite
  • your child is in pain or unable to stop itching 

This could be a serious skin infection such as cellulitis.

Check out the KidsHealth page for more information on how to prevent skin infections

Will my child need time off from kura or school?

If your child feels well they can go to kura or school.

This page last reviewed 20 April 2023.

Call Healthline on 0800 611 116 any time of the day or night for free health advice when you need it