If you live in Atlanta, we don't have to tell you how itchy mosquito bites can be. But an incessant itch is only the beginning of the ways mosquitoes can make you miserable. Mosquitoes have the ability to transmit viruses that can give you flu-like symptoms, or worse. Let's take a quick look at how you can address mosquito bites to reduce the itch, and discuss some ways to mitigate the danger of mosquito-borne viruses.
Why Mosquito Bites Itch
Some mosquito bites are immediately irritating. You feel a pinch and you look at your skin to find a female mosquito happily sucking the blood out of you. But most of the time you don't feel it. Do you know why? Because a mosquito introduces anticoagulant into the wound. This thins your blood and allows it to flow out without causing you discomfort. Unfortunately, anticoagulants (which are proteins), along with other proteins in mosquito saliva, are what cause the allergic reaction that makes you want to scratch a mosquito bite like crazy. Your body's immune system reacts to these invading proteins as foreign substances and sends out histamine to help your white blood cells move into the areas and fight off the invasion. This histamine also causes your skin to swell and become red and itchy. The more allergic you are to the proteins in mosquito saliva, the worse your bites will be. How do you deal with an allergic reaction?
Tip 1: Use an antihistamine to reduce symptoms.
You can purchase an antihistamine at your local drugstore. Benadryl is a common product used orally. For topical application, calamine lotion is a good option. These products may be able to reduce all the symptoms associated with mosquito bites.
Why The Itch Gets Worse
When you scratch a mosquito bite, what happens? It gets worse, doesn't it? The reason for this is that histamine causes inflammation and inflammation in your skin tissue flares when you scratch. If you make the inflammation worse, your skin will itch more. Repeating this cycle can turn an irritating itch into a maddening itch. It can also result in open wounds, which can lead to infection.
Tip 2: Do everything you can to avoid scratching mosquito bites.
It's tough. We know. But you'll just make it worse if you scratch those bites. Fortunately, you don't have to rely only on your will and self-control. There are products that can calm the itchy feeling. Some are even natural substances.
- Apply alcohol to the wounds. Not too much though. You don't want to dry your skin out and cause more irritation. Just enough to create a cooling sensation.
- Some people find aloe to be extremely soothing for mosquito bites. You can get aloe products at the store or pick up an aloe plant for your home. Aloe is great to have around for general skin health. Cut off a small piece and just squeeze the interior of the plant on your skin.
- Put a cold tea bag on the wound. The cold and the properties found in tea both have anti-inflammatory properties. Experts suggest using black tea or green tea.
Why Mosquito Bites Are A Cause For Concern
While most of the mosquitoes in Atlanta that bite you are not going to make you sick, you can get sick, even very sick, from a mosquito bite. West Nile virus claims lives every year in the United States. While the number of fatalities is below 100 on average, one death is one death too many. We also have outbreaks of malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever, and chikungunya. If all that isn't enough, mosquitoes spread several forms of encephalitis. If you're not aware, encephalitis is a swelling of the brain. If you develop a headache, you could have a mosquito-borne virus and not realize it. Many people are impacted by mosquitoes every year and don't realize it. They blame the fevers, aches, stomach illness, headaches, and other symptoms on the flu or the common cold.
Tip 3: Be aware that flu-like symptoms should be monitored closely.
If you experience symptoms that are increasingly bad, seek medical attention. Don't take any chances.
How To Mitigate The Threat Mosquitoes Represent
The best way to avoid the medical problems associated with mosquito bites is to avoid having mosquitoes bite you. This is where we can help. At Tuxedo Mosquito Control, we use long-lasting, fast-acting botanical insecticide spray to target mosquitoes that come into your yard. When mosquitoes rest in your landscape vegetation, or in other common locations, they won't live long enough to regret it. Mosquitoes are simple organisms that can't process the natural active ingredient in these EPA-approved products we apply.
What Tuxedo Mosquito Customers Are Saying
I would highly recommend Tuxedo Mosquito. Very professional organization. Installation was quick and service has been great. My wife, who seems to be a "mosquito magnet" spent the entire summer in our backyard without getting bit. Money well spent