Insect bites are no laughing matter. Sure, for many people, they’re nothing more than an itchy annoyance. But, for an unlucky few, they can end up being fatal. Indeed, around 100 people die in the US every year from an allergic reaction to an insect bite or sting.
Clearly, they can be more serious than most people assume. However, sometimes it’s difficult to even know if you’ve been bitten or not! Failing to see any creepy crawly culprit nearby, you’re left only with a particular symptom as evidence.
Keep reading to discover the primary insect bite symptoms to look out for.
An itchy rash is one of the most common insect bite symptoms people come across. Of course, the exact location of the rash will vary depending on the context. However, common areas include the ankles, hairline, and hands. Why? Because that’s where certain insects tend to bite with most frequency. Bed bugs provide one example. These insects are opportunists! They’ll bite the areas of your body to which they have access.
Your hands and feet may not be covered by nightclothes. Hence, they provide prime targets. It’s worth noting that an itchy rash can have many other causes too. As a common symptom of allergic reactions in general, there’s no way of guaranteeing that yours has been caused by an insect.
Welts are another typical symptom of allergic reactions. They’re also commonly experienced having being bitten by an insect. Look out for enlarged, raised areas on your skin. It may also be accompanied by redness and swelling, plus a fair amount of itchiness!
Wasps, chiggers and mosquito bites are three examples of insects that can cause welts. However, that’s by no means an exhaustive list. In reality, the welts you experience could be a reaction to any number of nibbling, stinging insects.
A sudden sharp, stinging sensation is a clear symptom of an insect bite. Anyone who has ever been stung by a bee or a wasp will know all about it! However, any other form of insect bite can have a similar effect. Some insects provide worse pain than others. The familiar stab of a sandfly is never fun, but it’s generally bearable. It’s the ensuing itchiness that’s usually the greater annoyance.
Fire ants, on the other hand, can provide a truly nasty biting experience. These aggressive insects cause sharp, painful bites that leave to burning and itchiness. They can even be bad enough to cause trouble breathing as part of an allergic reaction that follows. Regardless of the exact source, a sharp stinging pain (or a series of them) is a clear sign of an insect bite.
Another symptom of insect bites can be clusters of unexplained red marks on your skin. They may or may not be accompanied by an itching sensation. Always be wary if you notice them on your body.
For instance, these clusters can indicate the presence of lice. Depending on the location, that might mean head lice or pubic lice (otherwise known as crabs). These parasitic insects are always troubling to find. Inspect your body to see if you notice any tiny insects crawling on hairs or your skin. Spot any? This is most likely the source of those red dots.
Bites can often burn as well. The sensation itself can be one of burning. Equally, and not necessarily in a related way, insect bite areas can become inflamed. They’re literally hot to the touch. Tick bites are a particular example of this to be aware of. Indeed, ticks can be particularly harmful to human health. They can carry Lyme Disease, which has a host of negative implications if you catch it (here’s more info on Lyme Disease ). Ticks latch onto your skin, feeding off your blood.
If you notice a small, dark-colored insect attached to your skin, then try and remove it as soon as possible. Be sure to remove the head though, which can often be left behind and cause infection. Go to the doctor if you’d rather a professional remove the tick. A red circle/halo around the bite is often a tell-tale sign of a tick-bite. It’s also worth being wary of: go to the doctor if you notice it.
Most people associate blisters with burns and/or ill-fitting shoes! However, they’re another common symptom of many insect bites. Some blisters appear more obvious than others. Some look more like pimples; others have the ‘classic’ blister appearance.
Anything from ants and flies to spiders can cause blistered areas at the site of the bite. Blisters tend to be comorbid with other symptoms. For instance, they may be accompanied by redness, soreness, itching, and, sometimes, burning sensations too.
Some more serious bites lead to flu-like symptoms. Your body may react to the bite with things like fever, aches, or nausea. You might even vomit as a result. Even worse, and altogether different to the flu, can be muscle spasms, lip, and throat swelling, breathing difficulties, and even states of confusion.
These occur in extreme cases and signify a medical emergency. Be sure to seek out immediate medical treatment if any of these symptoms occur.
There you have it: the top insect bite symptoms that everyone should look out for. Insect bites are rarely fun. However, thankfully, they’re rarely more than an annoyance. The itching, burning, and soreness can be a negative distraction to contend with. For some people, though, bites can be far more serious. Sometimes, in rare cases, they can even be fatal.
Often, the first step to dealing with the problem is realizing you’ve been bitten! That’s easier said than done if you don’t explicitly see the insect in question. Hopefully, this post will help you recognize the symptoms so you can seek appropriate treatment. Are you concerned with a reaction you’ve had to an apparent insect bite? Be sure to contact us today for a free consultation. We’ll help you get to the bottom of the issue in no time.