How to Recognize and Treat 7 Different Bug Bites
Summer is just around the corner, and with all of the backyard
BBQs, picnics and outdoor festivals comes one of the season's
inevitable nuisances: bugs.
Fortunately, most bug bites are harmless, so you can
enjoy your time outdoors in peace.
Most insect bites cause only minor irritations, but it's
possible to have a more serious reaction, such as an allergic
reaction or Lyme disease. So, knowing how to recognize different
bites can save you a lot of unnecessary worry, or let you
know that it's time to seek help.
Here we've listed some of the most common bug bites you may
encounter this summer, along with how to best treat them.
After a mosquito bites you, some saliva remains in the wound,
causing an immune response to occur. The bite will typically
swell and itch until your immune system can break down the
Mosquito bites are generally itchy red bumps that can range
in size from very small to 1/2 inch. You can treat mosquito
bites naturally using a paste made of baking soda and a small
amount of water. Apply the paste to the bite, and apply a
bandage over it to prevent yourself (or your child) from scratching
An excellent, natural remedy to treat insect bites
of all types is a simple paste made from baking soda
and water. It's safe for everyone, including children.
2. Bees, Wasps, Yellow Jackets, Hornets
A bee sting will leave a painful red bump, which may have
a black dot inside of it if the stinger was left behind. If
you see a stinger, remove it immediately using a pair of tweezers.
To clean the sting, use a bit of hydrogen peroxide, then
apply an ice pack to reduce swelling. If the discomfort persists,
you can apply the baking soda paste described above.
For those who are allergic to the venom, a sting can result
in a life-threatening allergic reaction that can cause hives,
difficulty breathing and swallowing, hoarseness, swelling
of the tongue, dizziness and fainting. Emergency care is necessary
in these cases. Because the venom of each insect varies, it's
possible to be allergic to a bee sting but not to a wasp sting,
and so on.
Tick bites are painless and do not itch, but the tick will
remain at the site and embed itself in your skin. To remove
a tick, use tweezers to grab the tick as close to your skin
as possible, and pull it upward with even pressure. The completely
pesticide-free and safe Flea
'n Tick B Gone can also be sprayed directly onto the tick
to help with removal.
Ticks can also bite your pets. If you're looking for a safe
tick (and flea) treatment for your pets, Sixwise.com highly
'n Tick B Gone. Unlike the other flea and tick treatments
on the market, Flea 'n Tick B Gone does not contain harmful
pesticides or chemicals, such as DEET, pyrethrins, synthetic
pyrethroids or permethrin, all of which can be harmful and
irritating to your pet, the person applying them and our environment.
4. Chigger (Harvest Mites)
These mites are most common in the Southern United States.
Their bites typically occur on the legs or along the beltline,
and they show up as very itchy, small red bumps that may appear
similar to chickenpox.
The site should be cleaned using hydrogen peroxide, and treated
with an anti-itch cream such as calamine lotion or Quret
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Most spider bites are not serious. The only poisonous spiders
in the United States are the black widow spider and the brown
recluse spider. If you're bitten by one of these spiders,
you may experience muscle pain, sweating, nausea, vomiting,
headache or high blood pressure within three to 12 hours.
In this case, you should go to the emergency room immediately.
bite dogs, cats, humans and other animals to feed on their
blood. An adult flea feeds on blood more than once a day.
Flea bites themselves are red and very itchy. On humans they
typically occur on the ankles and legs. Fortunately, the fleas
typically found in homes are "just a nuisance,"
according to Marcia Larkins, D.V.M., chief of the companion
and wildlife drugs branch in the Food and Drug Administration's
Center for Veterinary Medicine. "They generally cause
a lot of itching and scratching. They may also cause some
discomfort due to possible allergic flea bite dermatitis."
Once fleas are in your home, be sure to vacuum all carpets,
floors and upholstered furniture every day for at least several
weeks (dispose of the vacuum cleaner bag after each cleaning
so the fleas don't crawl out). This will go a long way toward
getting rid of the fleas as quickly as possible.
7. Fire Ants
Fire ant stings are painful and also contain toxins that
can be dangerous in large amounts, or to small children. Once
you have cleaned the area with soap and water, it can be treated
with a medicated cream to relieve pain -- but should be watched
for signs of infection or allergic reaction like trouble breathing
Eventually, a blister will develop over the bite. When this
happens, do not break the blister as this could lead to infection
that Bite: Interesting Facts & Necessary Precautions on
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