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Mites attacking me

 
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I'm in Missouri and recently moved to a property with overgrown fencing. I have been spending 1 day/weekend cutting a path to repair the fence. I have been covered with some kind of invisible mites and had to take prednisone to get ride of them. I don't think this is sustainable. Next time i go to the store, i was going to grab some bug spray, but wanted to check here if anyone had any ideas on how to avoid this without such harsh chemicals on my body or any home remedies once they do attack. I know that it's not some poisonous plant because they only end up affecting my "crevices" even when i'm fully covered.
 
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sounds like you’ve just met chiggers! it helps to tuck pant legs into socks. if you want to go with a bug spray (even a non-toxic one), feet and legs are where to concentrate your fire!
 
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I would add ....anywhere your clothing is tight ....such as a waist band.   The good news is that they tend to be seasonal.    I am from southern Illinois, and chigger season normally runs for only a few weeks on my property.  
 
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Vodka isn't a cure all it helps some. I put it a spray bottle and liberally dose socks, underwear and so on. For me me is seems to reduce the biting and also relives the itching. I used to use rubbing alcohol but Vodka seems to work better, I go through about a gallon of the cheapest I can find each season. If it's really bad pyrethrin works. Dilute it (a lot)  in water and wet clothing and let dry before wearing.
Staff note (John F Dean) :

Thanks Mark, I just told my wife we need lots more Vodka ... for medicinal purposes.

 
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I use sulphur from the feed store for chiggers.

I found this for mites:

For your own dust mite repellent spray, try mixing either Clove, Eucalyptus, Lavender, Peppermint or Rosemary oil into a spray bottle of water and use it to mist your bed lightly. Allow the spray to air dry. Mites detest these scents and will stay away from them.



https://www.huffpost.com/entry/8-homemade-pest-control-s_b_5667174
 
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The chiggers are rough. I usually try to limit my exposure time to about 3 hours, then quarantine the clothes I was wearing in a bag and take a shower, making sure to scrub well, especially in those crevices. Frequent brushing off of the legs while I was out there seemed to help a little. Last year, I read a doctor and hiker saying that spraying yourself down with white vinegar before and after exposure would help deter the chiggers, cause them to drop off and reduce the swelling from bites that'd already happened. I made a habit of spraying myself before and after being outside and felt it did help some. Peppermint oil on bites that'd gotten rough seemed to calm them down and at least let me sleep.
It probably doesn't make a huge dent, but I've taken to squishing the adults when I see them. I had to learn to distinguish them from the velvet mites first so I wasn't taking my frustration out on innocent critters. If it's any consolation, from my understanding, because of how crazy our immune response to the bites is, the ones that bite us can't stay attached long enough to get a good feed and don't make it to the next stage of development.
 
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I use tea tree oil for spider mites, they are common on our juniper trees.  It works great if you get it on the bites sooner than later, but sometimes I rub it on my hands, arms and legs before I start and it seems to greatly reduce the number of bites.
 
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Yipes, mites are the worst. Ive had a little firsthand experience with them and it took awhile but the following turned out to be the best practices: Grow Pennyroyal intensively to keep away many types of parasites, I would add to that growing Lavender and Pyrethium too in the yard would be a good thing. Just get on a campaign to grow it around the house, livestock and borders, anywhere you can put it. 17th/18th century sources mentioned cutting the pennyroyal and laying it on your bed every day to keep parasites of all kinds away, removing it when you get in at night.  You may find that fleas, ticks, midges, biting flies and mosquitos will also evacuate the area too as a bonus.  If they're your bane where you live, then permanently integrate bug-repellents into your environment.  You'd be doing the same if you lived in a mosquito-infested bayou, no?

Wash and hang your clothing outside. Apply Pennyroyal oil to your socks and the collars of your shirts.

Tea tree, Peppermint and Pyrethium oil applied in your ears sideburns and eyebrows with a q-tip may help, dropping pennyroyal oil in your boots at night (and keeping boots in garage or outside), and keeping all clothing that you are not presently using inside plastic trash bags with a couple drops of pennyroyal oil could help. Id add a couple drops of that and pyrethium to your shampoo. But be extremely careful with it, its strong smelling so you know its around, I wouldnt put Pennyroyal oil directly on my skin, and if it gives you headaches you're using too much. Never ingest it, it could cause kidney and liver failure. The trick is to use the least amount possible over a long period of time and they progressively move away from you, then let the plants do the rest.

If the bites are persistently painful, remember you can use Clove Oil that does double duty as a light topical anesthetic and is also a classic insect repellent, so save it for your bites. Not sure if ammonia works for the pain, Im sure the little guys are injecting anticoagulant in you so they can suck the blood components out more easily...ammonia is used for other types of insect bites/stings......you can use the sorts of pens used for cleaning camera lenses (they have a liquid applicator feature) fill it up with your ammonia or clove oil and you can press the tip to the affected site.  Carry it in your shirt pocket for emergencies.

Although I havent read it in years the herbal classic "Culpepper's Herbal" will list many herbal-repellants, more recent sources such as "Be Your Own Herbal Pharmacist" by Linda Rector Page has some good ideas.

Best of Luck...M
 
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