Fleas are wingless parasitic insects that possess mouthparts for piercing the skin and sucking out blood. These external parasites, which have the ability to jump 14 to 16 inches at a time, survive by feeding on the blood of mammals. Do fleas bite humans? Yes, they do. If they can’t find any dogs or cats around, they will stick to human and feed on our blood.
What do flea bites look like on humans
There are three main kinds of fleas that can bite humans. These are cat fleas (ctenocephalides felis), dog fleas (ctenocephalides canis) and human fleas (pulex irritans). Fleas have many stages in flea life cycle making them very hard to eradicate completely. These fleas can spread many health problems and possibly fatal diseases such as tapeworm larvae, bubonic plague, murine typhus and stomach flu.
The effect of flea bites differs depending on the individual bitten. While flea bites on humans can have absolutely no serious effects on some individuals, these bites can cause various allergy problems in others. Therefore, flea bites on humans should not be ignored and should be given immediate attention.
Flea bites on humans is characterized by extreme itch, which when scratched can lead to complications. Fleas defecate while they bite; thus, scratching the affected area will cause bacteria to spread, and can lead to open wounds and secondary infection.
Symptoms of flea bites on humans include itchy tiny bumps with small punctures in the center surrounded by a red halo, rashes, and hives in a certain area. Upon close examination, scab formation will be visible, indicating bleeding. Some people, especially those allergic to flea bites, may develop painful welts on the area of the bite. Flea bites on people are commonly seen around the waist, on the lower legs, on the back of the knees, ankle, feet, between skin folds, and areas where clothes tightly fit. Fleas can also hide in the hair, nape, behind the ears and under the breasts.
How To Prevent Flea Bites On Humans
Flea bites on humans can be prevented by treating homes with flea bombs, insecticides or natural flea repellent. Carpets and furnishing should be vacuumed repeatedly for a few days to remove fleas, flea eggs and larvae. Flea control powder can be used on carpets, curtains, and the like. Flea soaps, shampoos and powders can be used on pets with fleas. Dehumidifying the house can also help prevent and control infestation. Carpets, beddings and clothes can be washed with detergent and lemon juice in warm to hot water. Sunning and spraying insecticide on these household items can also help control infestation and prevent re-infestation. For extreme cases, hiring professional flea exterminators is recommended.
Flea bites on humans can be treated easily. To help get rid of fleas, liquid soap and lemon juice can be added to bath water. Flea bites can be washed with antiseptic soap or lotion to prevent infection. Using cold water to wash the area is recommended as warm water triggers itching. Tea tree oil can also be used to clean the area and reduce itching. Swelling can be relieved by applying cold compress. To treat flea bites on people, a mild steroid cream or calamine lotion can be used. 1% hydrocortisone cream and Benadryl is recommended for this as well. For severe itching, anti-histamine can be taken orally to reduce the itch. For extreme cases, such as when the bites have discharge, the individual should seek medical help immediately. Body ache, headache, fever, nausea and rash are symptoms associated with murine typhus and therefore warrant immediate medical attention.