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Why Am I the Only One Getting Bit By Fleas!?

Why Am I the Only One Getting Bit By Fleas!?

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The thought of fleas is enough to make most of us start itching and scratching. Seeing a flea inspires full-scale panic, and war is soon waged with every insecticide at our disposal.

Fleas are, however, notoriously tricky pests to get rid of, and just when you think you are flea-free, you find another one. Some people seem to be especially attractive to fleas and are always bitten.

Is it true that fleas prefer biting certain people?

Fleas do not have preferences for certain people. Some people are allergic to flea saliva, and their bodies react to the bite. These people are therefore more aware of being bitten and suffer more from a bite. Repeated exposure can cause heightened sensitivity to flea bites.

It is important to know why fleas bite you, what you can do to prevent it and how to eliminate fleas in your home.

Are Some People More Attractive to Biting Fleas?

Many people believe that they get bitten more often by fleas than other people in the same house. This is a misconception with some sound underlying medical reasons.

When a flea bites you, it inserts its proboscis into the skin to access a blood vessel. The flea injects a tiny amount of saliva into the region. This salivary secretion has agents that prevent the victim’s blood from clotting.

Some people are allergic to the flea’s salivary deposit. The body responds by identifying the flea saliva as an allergen. It sends histamines to the region as part of the immune system response to a substance the body has decided is harmful.

Histamines activate many different processes, and one of these is the itch receptors in the skin. Scratching releases chemicals that further activate the receptors, and the cycle continues.

People that are allergic to flea bites will develop more of a reaction. There may be swelling and a red halo around the bite. Some people are so allergicto flea bites that they can have systemic responses.

People who are not allergic to flea bites may have a small bump where the flea bit them and minor irritation.

If you feel fleas are always biting you, it is probably because you are allergic to flea saliva.

How Should Flea Bites Be Treated?

Flea bites can be treated in the following ways:

  1. Icing can help to cool and soothe irritated skin.
  2. Antihistamine creams can help to counteract the effects of histamine.
  3. If you have many bites, taking an oral or systemic antihistamine may be beneficial.
  4. Corticosteroid creams can help depress the itching urge while minimizing inflammation in the skin.
  5. If you do not have antihistamine or corticosteroid creams, you can also try using an anti-inflammatory gel.

Can You Prevent Flea Bites?

It is possible to prevent flea bites by using insect deterrents on your skin. The problem is that long-term use of these insect repellents can sometimes cause side effects. These include low-grade toxicity, skin rashes, and the development of allergies to the ingredients.

It is better to eliminate fleas from your home.

How to Get Rid of Fleas

Fleas are challenging pests to eliminate. They lay hundreds of eggs in the environment, which hatch at various times. Killing the adult flea is the easy part that you can accomplish using a host of insecticides. The more challenging part is eliminating flea eggs that hatch in a constant cycle.

Soft furnishings and bedding should be regularly washed in hot water. The home should be vacuumed rigorously for a few continuous weeks. The vacuum bag should be emptied into a refuse bag, sealed, and thrown away.

All pets should be treated for fleas. There are various options, including shampoos, oral preparations, powders, dips, and spot-on treatments. Flea control must be maintained rigorously for several months to eradicate fleas completely.

It is essential to use the correct insecticide for the pet you treat. Many anti-flea preparations are only suitable for one animal species and can be toxic to others. Pet birds must be protected from aerosol insecticides used in the home.

Pet bedding must be washed and sprayed with insecticide regularly.

Some people have no pets but are surprised that they have a flea infestation. Wild animals such as rats, bats, or birds that find their way into the home or the roof can bring fleas. Removing these animals from the house will be necessary before success is guaranteed.

Do Fleas Prefer to Bite People or Animals?

There are over two thousand five hundred flea species, but the most common one is the cat flea. Even though it is called the cat flea, it can also be found on dogs.

Generally, fleas prefer to be on animals as they hide among the hair. Animals are not as skilled at picking off fleas as we are and make a perfect host. Fleas do not remain on the animal all the time. They hop off to lay eggs in the environment and may then climb back aboard for another meal.

Although fleas prefer to feed on animals, they will take a blood meal from any mammal, including humans. If you walk into a flea-infested home that has been closed up, you will find your ankles and feet covered with the black pests as they hungrily devour your blood.

Fleas seldom live on people as we are quite adept at feeling the flea and catching it to remove it. We also clean ourselves regularly in hot baths or showers, removing any flea poop and discouraging fleas in the process.

Our lack of hair makes fleas feel uncomfortably exposed and vulnerable, so they are more apt to jump on us, have a quick meal, and jump off again.

Final Thoughts

Fleas are unpleasant and having one bite us makes most of us shudder and itch. People who feel bitten more often than others are allergic to flea saliva. They notice the bites more and, as a result, feel they are the only ones bitten.

Other people are also bitten, but they have a minimal reaction.

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