Everything you need to know about bug bites

Shutterstock.com/ Chansom Pantip

Summer is the favorite time of year for the majority of people. You can visit the beach, roll around on the grass, stay out late having barbeques, it is a lot of fun. Yet there is one massive downside to all of these activities and that is bug bites. It is impossible to get through an entire summer without experiencing a couple of bug bites, unless you decide to stay locked away inside. While the bug bites themselves are terribly annoying it is often more annoying not knowing where the bite came from and if it is a bigger issue. Here is everything you need to know about the three most common forms of bug bites so that the next time you are bitten you know exactly what it means and what to do.

Mosquitos

The most common bug bite is the mosquito. These pesky creatures offer no good to the world and if we could simply eradicate them all we would be a lot better off, yet it seems impossible to do. Estimates suggest that mosquitos are responsible for the death of around one million people every year. This is because they transport disease incredibly efficiently. Malaria, zika, dengue, yellow fever, chikungunya, la cross encephalitis, and more are transmitted by the bite of a mosquito. This means that depending on where you are in the world a mosquito bite can be a mild annoyance or a severe issue. It is important to know what diseases are prevalent in your area.

If there are no serious diseaes than mosquitos are just incredibly annoying. Some of them buzz loudly, others move with pure stealth. Some are fast, some incredibly slow. When bitten some can make you incredibly itchy. It is important to resist though as itching a mosquito bite can leave permanent scarring. It is true that some people are more likely to be bitten than others. Studies suggest that mosquitos are more likely to pick on people with type O blood. If that is you then you need to apply some strong anti repellent. In most cases you should use 15% DEET to have any chance of keeping them at bay. I once took a trip to the Amazon with 7% DEET and the mosquitos ate me alive.

Bed Bugs

One of the most stressful bug bites to get is those from your bed. These bites are immediately recognizable because the bug bites in a straight line. You will usually have a line of three or four bites on your arm or leg. Bed bugs mate quickly so you will also know that you have them if the bites don’t stop. Bed bug bites are itchy but the worst part about them is how difficult it is to get rid of the bugs themselves. They entrench themselves in your clothes and in your furniture and you need to wash everything in hot water to have any chance of getting rid. Many mattresses have been lost to battles with bed bugs. 

Ticks

Tick bites are one of the most dangerous bites to be aware of. While the western world is relatively safe from the diseases that a mosquito transmits, ticks are a danger. Ticks transmit some serious illnesses with the most famous being Lyme disease. If you don’t catch Lyme disease early it can wreak havoc on your life. A tick bite is sometimes recognizable as a bullseye but it can also be a rash. You need to monitor your condition closely to see if you are experiencing any headaches or fever as a result of the bites. If you are, see your doctor quickly as going on antibiotics fast can save you a lot of pain.

These are the three most common forms of bug bites. Fleas, chiggers, fire ants are also pretty common and have their own defining features to watch out for. Of course, the worst bite of all is the black widow spider, if you see two deep fang marks on your body, head to the doctor straight away.