Nettle Sting: Symptoms, Solutions, Home Remedies

If you go looking for trouble, you will find it… Nettle belongs to the family Urticaceae, from the Latin urticaa term derived frompiss, which literally means “to burn”. This herbaceous plant grows everywhere: on balconies, in gardens, in forests… It can sometimes grow more than a meter in size. It is recognized by its green, pointed and serrated leaves† In summer it bears clusters of flowers in the form of small green spheres. While it has many medicinal benefits, it also has a strong stinging ability, which is often discovered at its own expense.

Why do nettles sting?

The leaves and stems of nettles are covered with fine, hollow, brittle hairs, which a chemical cocktail rich in histamine, acetylcholine, serotonin and formic acid† At the slightest touch, the hairs burrow into the skin and break off, releasing the horrible “poison” that causes itching and a burning sensation.

Good to know : nettles become harmless in the rain!

Nettle Sting: What Are the Symptoms?

“The intensity of pain varies from person to person, but the symptoms of nettle stings often leave little room for doubt,” says GP Gilbert Vanco. Symptoms that should warn:

  • by tingling,
  • by itch localized,
  • the formation of red spots,
  • a burning feeling,
  • and the appearance blisters and blisters.

These symptoms begin within minutes of contact and can last from half an hour to a few days. “If the burning sensation lasts longer than a day, it is better to consult as a precaution”!

A few automations can quickly relieve the symptoms of a nettle sting:

  • Rinse the puncture area with cold waterTrue use saline, available in pharmacies. Purpose: to cleanse the skin and limit the spread of symptoms. “Then gently blot the area with a damp cloth or compress, without rubbing or pressing,” the doctor recommends.
  • As far as possible, try to remove the hairs from the nettle gently, without breaking them. To do this, get adhesive tape which you will use, for example, as a strip of depilatory wax.
  • Disinfect the wound with a neutral, non-alcoholic antiseptic.
  • A soothing ointment True an antihistamine gel will then neutralize the stinging agents, “at the rate of three applications per day, until the symptoms disappear”.

What grandma’s remedies to relieve itching naturally?

In the middle of the forest you can look for wild plantain, which often grows near stinging nettles (nature does it well sometimes). Then rub the leaves over the irritated area to reduce itching thanks to their healing and soothing properties. Other plants can also relieve unpleasant symptoms:

  • the aloe vera (moisturizing and restorative),
  • ground ivy (antibacterial)
  • and fresh mint (antibacterial).

Lavender essential oil (true or aspic) and chamomile essential oil may also be helpful, thanks to their antibacterial, healing, and antiseptic properties. Mix 2 drops of either in a little almond oil and then apply it on that area. Caution, however, the use of essential oils is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women, as well as young children. It is better to seek advice from your doctor or pharmacist!

Other proven home remedies: white alcohol vinegar and Marseille soap, to replace the antiseptic and disinfect the area.

Reminder: What Are the Benefits of Nettles?

Nettle has many health benefits. she is rich in vitamin A, vitamin B and vitamin C and includes in particular iron, calcium and magnesium.

In soup, it is mainly consumed for its diuretic and detoxifying properties, but it also acts against the pain of arthritis and rheumatism, thanks to its anti-inflammatory effect, and stimulates blood circulation.

Better to wear gloves if you want to pick it to enjoy its benefits. For the more adventurous, it is also possible to grab it with bare hands. To reduce the risk of stinging: squeeze the bottom of the stem and slide your fingers in the direction of the hair, always upwards, before cutting (the stinging hairs are directed towards the top of the leaves).

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