Feeling itchy? Northern Light Pharmacy offers effective remedies and prevention tips for rashes caused by Brown Tail Moth Caterpillar hairs

BREWER — With the onset of warmer weather, concerns about health issues stemming from exposure to Brown Tail Moth Caterpillar hairs are on the rise. Northern Light Pharmacy offers effective treatments and prevention strategies to help individuals cope with skin rashes and respiratory discomfort caused by these irritating hairs.

The Brown Tail Moth Caterpillar continues to expand its range in Maine and can now be found along the coast into parts of Downeast Maine and north of Bangor along the Penobscot River Valley. The caterpillar poses a significant health risk due to its microscopic hairs, which can trigger skin rashes and respiratory irritation upon contact. While seeking medical advice is crucial for severe cases, Northern Light Pharmacy is offering practical solutions for managing mild to moderate symptoms. These pharmacies offer over-the-counter and prescription only treatment options. 

“We all want to be outdoors after a long winter and wet spring, but brown tail moth rashes can certainly take the fun away,” shares Dennis Wood, PharmD, director of Northern Light Pharmacy, but anyone with mild to moderate symptoms can find comfort and relief from itching and inflammation.”

Respiratory symptom guidance: For individuals experiencing respiratory symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, or shortness of breath after exposure to caterpillar hairs, we advise seeking prompt evaluation from a primary care provider. Timely medical attention is essential for proper diagnosis and management of respiratory issues to prevent complications.

Prevention tips: In addition to offering remedies, we also need to stress the importance of prevention in reducing the risks associated with Brown Tail Moth Caterpillar exposure. Simple yet effective measures include:

  • Covering exposed skin: Wear long sleeves, pants, and gloves when gardening or spending time in areas where caterpillars are present to minimize direct contact with the hairs.
  • Regularly washing clothing and bedding: Launder clothing, bedding, and any outdoor gear that may have come into contact with caterpillar hairs to remove any lingering irritants.
  • Avoiding high-risk areas: Be cautious around oak trees, which are favored habitats for Brown Tail Moth Caterpillars, especially during their peak activity periods.

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