Fleas are small, blood sucking insects that feed on animals and humans and they produce bites that results to severe itching and inflammation as well as transmitting some serious diseases. The fleas will cut through the skin using their powerful jaws and inject an anticoagulant that is found in their saliva and continue to drink until full. The coagulant prevents the blood from clotting and produces the distinctive symptoms of a flea bite. Adult fleas can survive for a month or longer without feeding.
Flea bites can lead to a serious infection when scratched, and they can transmit diseases from one host to another. If you want to properly manage flea bites, all you have to do is to register for first aid training in your area.
Symptoms of flea bites
People affected by flea bites suffer from an allergic reaction to the saliva of the flea, which is known as flea allergy dermatitis.
- Itchiness of the whole body and when scratched, will develop into open sores.
- An allergic reaction develops within 12-24 hours after the bite
- Hives will surround the affected area and if the individual could not stop in constantly scratching the area, it will worsen the symptoms.
- A purple-red rash that has the tendency to spread to other areas with constant scratching.
Treatment and home remedies
- Provide the individual with oral histamine in order to minimize itchiness.
- Wash the flea bite areas using an antiseptic lotion or soap to reduce the itchiness.
- Soak a cotton swab with tea tree oil and use it to clean the bites.
- Apply hydrocortisone cream to the affected area in order to minimize the itch.
- Apply calamine lotion to the bites in order to prevent itching and when it dries up, it will form a light cover over the affected area.
- Encourage the individual to soak in a lukewarm oatmeal bath.
- Apply an ice pack on the affected area to minimize swelling and itchiness.
- The flea bites can oftentimes leave behind scars on the skin but can be treated by essential oils. All you have to do is to mix two drops of calendula, myrrh, carrot seed, blue chamomile and rose essential oil in ½ tablespoon of flaxseed oil with 2 ounce rose hip seed oil. Combine all the ingredients properly and store in a dark bottle and apply this mixture on the scars several times a day.
Prevention of flea bites
Flea bites can be prevented by eradication of fleas from pets and the home. Pets such as cats and dogs are the main source of fleas. Bedding of pets should be washed frequently in hot water and pets should be treated regularly with over-the-counter or prescribed medication for prevention of flea infestation. Do not forget to check other possible hiding areas of fleas in the house such as carpets or furniture.
Insecticides can be used around the walls of the house in order to create a barrier against fleas. As for severe infestation, there is a need to use a home fogger or simply call in professional pest service.