How to Identify Mosquito Bites

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Are Those Red Dots on Your Skin Mosquito Bites?

There are insects living all around us. Some of them pollinate plants, some live underground, and many of them bite. Mosquitoes can be found all around the United States, and they have an appetite for human blood! How do you know when you’ve been bitten by a mosquito? What if it’s a horse fly, bed bug, flea, spider, or another dangerous insect? Mosquitoes may be more commonplace than the wolf spider, deer tick, or bed bug, but their bites are still incredibly itchy and can cause serious allergic reactions in some people. It is often challenging to distinguish between different types of insect bites. Learning how to identify a common bump such as the mosquito bite is the best place to start.


Symptoms of Mosquito Bites

Mosquito bite symptoms begin to show fairly quickly after a mosquito’s had a snack. After just a few minutes the skin around the bite will swell and turn white or red. Often, there will be a small red dot in the center, right where the mosquito pierced the skin. The size of the swollen area can vary depending on just how allergic one is to mosquito bites.

After a day or so, the bite will harden as the skin becomes a reddish-brown color. Some people experience small blisters instead of red bumps, and in more severe cases bruising can occur around the spot. Mosquito bites should soften and disappear within a few days.

What Makes A Mosquito Bite Stand Out From the Crowd?

Our bodies have different sensitivity levels to different types of bug bites. Some of these sensitivities change as we age. Children are extremely sensitive to mosquito bites, but as a person gets more and more bites, their sensitivity level drops.

bed bug bites-469684-editedBed Bugs

This relationship between bite numbers and sensitivity works the other way around when it comes to bed bugs. One bed bug bite may not cause any irritation at all, but a person’s sensitivity increases with each new bite. People often have the most trouble distinguishing between bed bugs and mosquito bites, but this clue may help.


Flea bites are another common bump often confused with mosquito bites. Most people and most house pets are very sensitive to flea bites. The distinguishing factor between flea bites and mosquito bites is that flea bites remain small and never swell, while a mosquito bite causes immediate swelling. A mosquito is happy to bite any exposed area of your skin. Flea bites often show up around your ankles and legs. Fleas also like inner elbows and knees, armpit, breast, and waist areas.


There are numerous species of biting flies that are active during the same time of year as mosquitoes. Flies can be extremely aggressive and cause painful bites. Most people are sensitive to fly bites, which are generally much more painful than mosquito bites. Whereas you may not even feel a mosquito bite until it’s already happened, many fly bites feel like strong pricks or stings. Depending on the species of fly, they may prefer to bite around a person’s head and neck, or lower on the body, around the ankles and legs.


Ticks live outside in shrubbery and tall grasses. People come into contact with ticks when spending time outside in the woods or in un-mowed fields. It’s also common for ticks to hitch a ride inside on the fur of a house pet. Tick bites burn more than mosquito bites. Chances are that if you get one mosquito bite, there are more coming. Ticks are lonely creatures, and people usually only find one tick bite on their body at any given time.

Yellow Jackets

Yellow jacket stings are a familiar summer memory for many, and they’re very distinguishable from mosquito bites. Most people experience tender, reddish, swollen skin around a sting. The swollen area around a yellow jacket sting is not as clearly defined as the area around a mosquito bite.

How to Treat Mosquito Bites

Scratching a mosquito bite can result in broken skin and infection, making the pain and irritation much worse. It’s always good to have an anti-itch cream on hand for bad cases. Calamine lotion and hydrocortisone creams are popular and effective choices.

bitmoreoften2Many people swear by natural methods, such as icing the bite in order to numb it, using apple cider vinegar, or making a baking soda paste. It’s important to properly research natural methods before you attempt to use them. Of course, it’s better not to have mosquito bites in the first place!

Regardless of how much anti-itch cream you use or how much you ice a bite, they’re still unsightly and irritating. Proper mosquito control is the smartest way to keep your family safe during the summer.

Stop Mosquitoes in Their Tracks!

Develop a mosquito control plan and implement it before the weather warms. The first thing you can do on your own is remove or clean any sources of standing water on your property. The next step is to contact a professional who can sent up a mosquito control plan that is safe for you, for your kids, and for the environment.

Working with a professional will keep the mosquito levels on your property as low as possible. Whether you’re planning ahead or in need of emergency action in the middle of the summer, Home Pest Control is always here to help you. 


February 15, 2019

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