How to Get Rid of Chiggers?

You’re probably here because you, or someone in your family, have Chigger Bites, and you’re trying to figure out how to kill them. 

How Can I Get Rid of Chiggers?

Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s talk a little about Chigger Bites and what they are, and then talk about how best to kill them in your yard.

If Chiggers have ever bitten you, you never want to be bite again. If you’ve never had them, be thankful. In either case, you’ll want to learn how to get rid of chiggers and how to prevent them in the future.  

Chiggers gift you with some of the most irritating, burning, and itching bug bites you will ever receive, and unfortunately, often in some of the worst places! This is when you rightfully look for options on 

How Can You Get Rid of Chiggers Naturally?

You’re most likely reading this because you or a close family member has Chigger Bites. First off, we’re sorry. Chigger Bites are miserable. Be sure to visit our Chigger Bite Treatment Guide for some relief!

Let’s go ahead and dispel a prevalent myth associated with Chiggers: They DO NOT embed them inside your skin.

Chiggers wait in tall grass for a host to walk by. 

They jump onto the host and seek out the first section of bare skin they can find. Often Chiggers are in groups. Therefore multiple bites can occur in the same area, causing almost a rash-like appearance.

Chiggers sit on top of your skin, and in fact, don’t “bite” at all. What they do is worse!

They tear open a tiny hole in your skin and inject their saliva into that tear. That saliva has an enzyme that begins to break down the soft tissue of your skin. Chiggers then use a straw-like appendage to “drink” up the partially digested skin.

The enzyme causes a fairly severe allergic reaction on your skin that causes red, pimple-like bumps that itch intensely within 24 hours.

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Quick Summary about Chiggers

To learn the fastest way to get rid of Chiggers, you’ll need first to understand a little bit about them and what they are.

Here is a quick summary:

Chiggers are the tiny larval stage of the Trombiculidae Mite. Chiggers themselves are not a particular insect, just a particular state of the Trombiculidae Mite. 

  • Adult Trombiculidae Mites do not bite people.
  • Chiggers jump onto their hosts and immediately seek out the first bare area of skin they can find.
  • Using their claws, they tear open the skin and inject an enzyme into the softer skin tissue layer.
  • The enzyme digests the soft skin, and they feed on it for a few days, if allowed.
  • Chiggers then drop off, leaving behind their bites.

Chiggers are very prevalent in the Southern United States and warm areas around the world. They prefer tall grass and woods, with some sun but not direct sunlight, and prefer damp areas with high humidity.

What are Chigger Bites?

Chigger Bites generally take 1-3 days to appear after the Chigger drops off. Once they appear, they generally swell and become inflamed quickly. The combination of torn skin, the Chigger enzyme, and the body’s allergic reaction can cause severe itching.  

Generally, multiple Chiggers jump onto a host simultaneously, and those Chiggers can often “bite” in multiple locations. The result is often many different bites, all close together. In severe cases, it can be hundreds of bites in multiple locations.

Chigger bites are well known for being some of the most uncomfortable and painful insect bites you can get. Bites can last for up to 2 weeks as well.

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For help identifying Chigger Bites, see our guide

You’ll find lots of Chigger and Chigger Bite Photos on our photos page.

How to kill Chiggers?

The best way to get rid of chiggers on the body is to prevent getting them first.  

By the time you realize you’ve had Chiggers on you, you’ve already been bitten, and the Chiggers are long gone.

Let us discuss what gets rid of chiggers. There are treatment options for your lawn, but many people get attacked by Chiggers while out hiking, participating in sports events, berry picking, or even just casually walking in the park. Most residential lawns get too much sun exposure and short grass to have Chiggers.

If Chiggers are on your lawn, there are treatment options you should consider. Getting rid of Chiggers isn’t an option for other locations, so prevention is your best bet, as we discuss prevention more below. So, what kills chiggers in the house?

If you have been exposed to Chiggers, or even think you have, do the following immediately:

  • Remove your clothing in the laundry room, and wash them right away using soap. That will get rid of Chiggers on your clothing.
  • Take a hot shower, and wash vigorously with soap. This will get rid of any Chiggers on your skin that remain.

If bites appear over the next 1-3 days, treat them immediately with ChiggerX or ChiggAway, which are anti-itch products specifically designed for Chigger Bites. See our Chigger Bites Treatment Guide for more information.

Let us tell you getting rid of chiggers is not difficult. Here are our 4-ways to kill Chiggers!

1 – Kill Chiggers on your Body and Clothing

If you are looking for answers on how to kill chiggers on the skin, let us tell you that, fortunately, Chiggers are not very resilient. If you’ve been in an area infested with Chiggers, immediately remove all your clothing and wash it. Immediately take a shower, and wash vigorously with soap.  

If you think they might have bitten you, we recommend a warm or cool shower, as it will help reduce the swelling and irritation from the “bite” marks.

The soap in your laundry and shower will remove and kill the Chiggers on your clothing and body.

If you do think you might have been bitten (and even if you aren’t sure), go ahead and apply an anti-itch cream to reduce your reaction to the bites. So, if you were looking for an effective solution to getting rid of chiggers on your body, trust us, you’ll thank us later.   

There are two excellent products, specifically for Chigger Bites: Natural Remedy Soap and Benadryl Itch cooling GEL; both are excellent at treating Chigger Bites. Read more in our Chigger Bites Treatment Guide.

2 – Clean up your lawn to discourage and keep Chiggers out

Before treating your yard and looking for solutions on how to kill chigger bites, you’ll first want to take steps to make your yard less desirable for Chiggers. Chiggers prefer tall grass, yard debris, and clutter.  

You’ll first want to completely mow your lawn, clean up any yard debris, and either remove or time back brush. Remove any fallen leaves, and try to get sun on any damp areas.

3 – Kill Chiggers in your yard using a Pesticide

Do you know what insecticides kill chiggers? The most effective way to kill Chiggers is to use a commercial-grade Pesticide.

Several options work, but the best products for killing Chiggers are liquid Pesticides:

While granular products do work, we’ve personally found the liquid products to be far superior and not only penetrate better but kill on contact.

4 – Kill Chiggers using a Professional Exterminator

The most effective way to kill Chiggers is to hire a professional exterminator. Professional exterminators are not only trained but also licensed to use stronger and more effective insecticides. They additionally have years of experience treating Chiggers and similar insects.  

All this boils down to quicker resolution and prevention of your Chigger problems.

Professional exterminators are often more expensive than traditional “do it yourself” treatment options, which for some may be a problem.

But if you can afford to engage a professional, it’s often the best route to go.

5 – Get Rid of Chiggers using Natural Treatments

If you prefer not to use chemicals or Pesticide-based products, you can use some effective natural products.  

Unfortunately, they are not near as effective against Chiggers as chemical and pesticide-based products. But here are the ones that receive the highest reviews and most praise from customers: 

  • Essentria IC – This product, made from all-natural oils, is a natural insecticide that attacks the nervous system of Chiggers and kills them. It is the most effective natural product we’ve found and is safe around water, children, and pets.
  • Wondercide EcoTreat – This USA product, which contains human food-grade ingredients, is 100% biodegradable and non-toxic pest control that kills and repels Chiggers. Just mix with water, per the directions, and spray on Chigger infested areas of your lawn.
  • Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE) – This product works by impaling tiny, sharp, and pointy fragments into the Chiggers, which eventually causes them to dry out and die. DE is very effective against most insects and mites, but only when it’s dry. Apply this product when you know it won’t rain over the next few days for maximum effectiveness.
  • Bed Bug Bully – While this natural spray is targeted at Bed Bugs, it will also kill and repel Chiggers as well.
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How long does it take to get rid of chiggers?

When it comes to Chiggers, before knowing what kills red bugs, you should know that prevention is key. Once Chiggers have bitten you, you’ll never want to be bitten again.

Fortunately, learning how to prevent Chiggers is pretty easy. Before going outside and into a potentially Chigger infested area, do the following:

  • Coat your skin using a Chigger Repellant designed for skin use. Our product of choice is ChiggAway.
  • Prevent Chiggers from gaining access to your skin by always wearing gloves, long sleeves, long pants, and boots. Tuck your pants into your boots, or even better, duct tape your pants to your boots.
  • Coat your clothing with a clothing-based Chigger repellent, like Sawyer Clothing Repellent.

When you return indoors, immediately remove all clothing, wash it with soap in the washer, and immediately take a hot shower with soap to kill any Chiggers that might have gotten on your skin.

How to kill red bugs from your yard?

Once you have taken one or more of the above four steps to kill Chiggers, you’ll want to begin practising some prevention strategies to keep Chiggers out of your home and yard.  

 There are several products designed to repel Chiggers, but here are the most effective:

  • Plant lots of Marigold: It turns out, Chiggers don’t like Marigold plants. So planting a large amount around and in the area of your lawn that is commonly infested will keep Chiggers out.
  • Sulfur Pellets: Chiggers hate Sulfur. Warning though, Sulfur smells pretty strong for the first few days. So warn your neighbours!
  • Cedar Pellets – Another very effective repellent. You’ll need to refresh it after a couple of weeks.

How to Keep Chiggers off of you when you’re Outside?

Even when using yard repellents for Chiggers, you’ll still want to protect yourself. If you know there are Chiggers in your yard, wear boots, long pants (with the bottoms tucked in your boots), and a long shirt.  

So, if you are looking for the easiest alternatives to what kills chiggers on the skin, you need to know. Wearing Gaiters is also a highly effective option against Chiggers and other insects.

We also recommend one of the following Chigger Repellents, which are specifically designed to keep Chiggers off your skin and your clothing. These products all contain safe chemicals or pesticides:

For natural repellents, we recommend:

  • Amrita Bugs BeGone – Essential oil-based product that is effective at repelling Chiggers and other insects. Has a pleasant lemon smell.
  • No-Bite-Me – Natural repellent that is safe for kids and infants

Are There Any Complications Associated with Chiggers?

  • Neither Chiggers nor Chigger Bites generally produce long-term complications, and Chiggers are not known to carry any disease. 
  • The only problem or risk that can occur is that due to the bites’ extreme itching, intense scratching can lead to skin breaks and bleeding. These wounds may become infected, and those infections can become very serious, if not life-threatening.
  • If your Chigger bites do not heal up within 1-2 weeks, or begin oozing white pus or showing signs of getting worse and not better, immediately seek a doctor. 

Does diatomaceous earth kill chiggers?

  • Yes, Diatomaceous earth kills chiggers quite effectively. All you need to do is sprinkle them evenly on your yard and let it remove all the chiggers in front of your eyes. This is also effective in keeping a check on ticks, fleas, and cockroaches.

Does permethrin kill chiggers?

  • Permethrin is a fantastic solution to kill chiggers from clothes. It is also extremely effective in removing all ticks and mosquitoes. However, you have to treat your clothes a day or two in advance before being able to wear them out in the wild. 

Does Triazicide kill chiggers?

  • Spectracide Triazicide, popularly known as thiazide concentrate, can kill chiggers from your yard once and for all. This chemical can be sprayed in the lawn and left for a few hours to work independently. This will kill and evacuate all the chiggers from their base.

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