Tea tree oil, or melaleuca oil (Melaleuca alternifolia), is an essential oil with antimicrobial and antiseptic properties. It is a strong oil, so it should always be diluted before being applied to the skin. A common ratio is one drop of tea tree oil to ten drops of carrier oil. The most common carriers for this purpose are coconut, olive and jojoba oils.
The topical application of these oils is helpful to relieve itching from mosquito bites. Itching is a major problem with bug bites, and it can lead to an infection. In addition, itching can worsen the swelling and redness of a bug bite.
Peppermint oil can also reduce the pain, itching and burning associated with bug bites. It has antiseptic properties, which can help prevent infections caused by bacteria and other microbes that are present in the bite wound.
Neem oil, on the other hand, is useful as a natural alternative to DEET for repelling mosquitoes. Neem oil, like all essential oils, should be diluted before applying it to the skin. This is usually done by mixing it with water or an oil or lotion, such as coconut or jojoba oil.
These essential oils are available at most health food stores and online retailers. They are a natural alternative to chemical-based bug sprays, and can be used on their own or in combination with other natural remedies for mosquito bites.