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Hydrogen Peroxide Soothes Itchy Bites

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Q. I am highly susceptible to mosquito bites and often get a dozen bites in the same time frame that others get one. I have tried many remedies to prevent the bites, like natural insect repellants and Vitamin B. I am still ‘fresh bait.’ Years ago, someone told me to rub hydrogen peroxide as soon as possible on the bites. Doing this alleviates the pain from the stings and itching within minutes! Best of all, the only trace from the bite is a faded pink spot the following day. The key is to apply the peroxide with a cotton ball right after the bite.

A. We cannot imagine why hydrogen peroxide (3 percent) would relieve the pain and itch of mosquito bites. This familiar wound cleanser foams on contact with abraded skin.

We’re glad this simple solution helps you. We heard from another reader that Listerine can keep mosquitoes away: “I have been using Listerine as an insect repellant and wonder if other readers have tried it. The use of Listerine to deter head lice seems to support using it against mosquitoes. I just wipe it on with a gauze pad, and it works for me!��?

Q. Thank you for writing about safer asthma treatments. I have suffered adult-onset asthma for more than 15 years and am highly sensitive to all the prescription drugs.

Five months ago my asthma was getting out of control, requiring the use of an inhaler four or five times a day. I think the prescription drug Flonase that I took for allergies made things worse. My ENT doctor had prescribed it despite the side effects listed on the label.

I was thrilled to discover the Buteyko breathing method through Teresa Hale's book "Breathing Free." I went off the Flonase just before learning about the breathing program. Within three days I was completely weaned from the inhaler and have not had to use it since.

My breathing is free, and foods and chemicals that used to trigger an asthma attack no longer do. I hope you will continue to tell people about this simple method of breathing that promotes health. It costs nothing and is easy.

A. The nasal spray Flonase may make asthma symptoms worse, according to the official prescribing information. We are glad your asthma is now under control and that the slow-breathing exercises have worked so well.

We discussed this topic in depth on our radio show. We explored the power of breathing techniques to lower blood pressure as well as to help control asthma. Anyone who would like to learn more about this fascinating approach may wish to order a CD of the hour-long interview. It is available for $16 from the People’s Pharmacy (CD-489), P. O. Box 52027, Durham, NC 27717-2027 or from www.peoplespharmacy.com.

Q. I have been successful in keeping rosacea outbreaks from occurring by using a product from the Watkins company called Red Clover Salve. I simply rub a small amount on my nose and cheeks every morning. I had used a prescribed ointment previously and find the salve just as effective and less expensive.

A. Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that causes flushing and pimple-like outbreaks. Red Clover Salve can be ordered from Watkins (800-425-7411). We found no studies on its use against rosacea but we are glad it is helping.

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