How to Identify and Treat Different Bug Bites

We all experience different bug bites during our lives, especially in the warm and moist summer days, which are usually a paradise for the mosquitoes and other types of bugs. Some bug bites are harmless and just irritating, while on the other hand, others may lead to serious consequences. Here are 5 common bug bites and tips how you should treat them.

Mosquito bites

The symptom of a mosquito bite is a hive-like bump that become red itchy and irritated. You can soothe mosquito bites by applying a soothing lotion or anti-itch creams like Sama or Itch-X. If you get lots of bites and do have hives or swellings elsewhere, then you will have to take an antihistamine. You should seek medical help only if you get a secondary infection. A secondary infection can be caused by excessive scratching since it can lead to impetigo, staph or strep.

Bed bug bite

Some people are allergic to bed bugs while others are not, and will not have any symptoms. Those who are allergic, the bites may take one or two days to appear. They typically occur in a pattern just like a little highway down your arm or leg. Their bite marks are red, slightly swollen and feel irritated or itchy. A medical treatment is not always vital for a bed bug bite, but you should avoid scratching and take an antihistamine to reduce the itchiness.bug-bite-infographic

Tick bite

A tick bite can go unnoticed unless it’s still burrowing into your skin. If it falls out cleanly, then the bite should heal without consequences. But if the tick remains in, you could be infected with a serious illness like Lyme Disease or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. If the tick does not release on its own, then it is recommended to use a fine-tipped tweezers so as to grasp the tick close to your skin surface. Then pull it upwards steadily and with pressure. Clean the infected area with iodine, rubbing alcohol or soap and water. Seek medical help if fever or a bull’s-eye-shaped rash develops within a few weeks or removing the tick.

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Bee sting

A bee sting will cause an instant sharp pain, a swollen red welt, and a small white spot where the bee punctured your skin. Only the honey bees do leave a stinger behind, and you can see it on the surface of your skin. Use the tweezers to remove the stinger. Wash the area with soap and water to treat the sting and ensure no venom remains, and then soothe it with a cold compress. Seek medical help by calling 911 if you are allergic to bees and you do not have an epinephrine injector pen at hand. Those who are allergic may have any the following symptoms: weak pulse, swelling of the throat and the tongue, difficulty breathing, and dizziness or fainting.

Fire ant sting

Fire ants do attack anything that disturbs their nests. They bite and sting then inject venom into their skin. The symptom of a fire ant sting is a swollen lump that forms at the site of the sting. It releases burning and pain and may develop into small blisters or pustules within 24 hours. To soothe the sting, clean the blisters with mild soap and water. Ensure to resist the temptation pop or break them; it can lead to itchiness or relieve pain. Apply topical hydrocortisone or take oral antihistamines to relieve the pain and itchiness. Seek Medical help if the symptoms worsen to include trouble breathing, excessive swelling or nausea.

Note that many bug bites may be relatively harmless, but some may lead to debilitating or deadly diseases. Ensure to keep insects away with structures like screens and netting. Use insect repellents that contain DEET and wear long pants when possible.

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