While there is no way to get rid of chigger bites, they can be treated using calamine lotion or corticosteroid cream to alleviate itching, according to MedicineNet. Oral antihistamines can also be used to provide additional relief from symptoms. While the itching from chigger bites can last for several days, the skin lesions caused by the bites can take up to two weeks to heal.
There are no long-term complications associated with chigger bites, according MedicineNet. However, in some cases, bacteria may enter the body at the site of the bites, causing a secondary bacterial infection. Within the first few days, chigger bites are the most itchy and may develop a head that looks similar to a blister. Beginning around three hours after the bite occurs, the itching is caused by stylostome, injected into the skin by the chiggers.
Washing the skin with soap and water after being outdoors can help to prevent chigger bites, according to MedicineNet. As chiggers typically jump onto clothing before migrating to the skin, they can also be killed through laundering any clothing worn outdoors. Long pants, long-sleeved shirts, thick socks and tall boots can also prevent chigger bites. Mosquito repellents are also effective at repelling chiggers and can be applied to both clothing and skin.