Even though fleas favor the blood of animals than humans, these parasites will not hesitate to bite humans within close distance. In most cases of flea bites, the indicative symptom is an itchy annoyance but bites on individuals can later on develop into serious issues.
An effective measure when dealing with flea bites involves the elimination of the source of infestation as well as implementing preventive methods to ensure that the house and pets stay free from fleas. If there are pets inside the house, there are times when they can bring inside these pests. In case a family member sustains flea bites, it is vital that you know how to ease the symptoms. All you have to do is to enroll in a first aid course today.
What you need to know about fleas
Fleas are brown in color and oval in shape. These pests feed on the blood of various animals including dogs, cats, birds and different wild mammals. Even if fleas are not built with wings, they can make the most out of their strong hind legs to jump long distances and get close enough to humans to deliver their bites. Since humans lack fur, exposed parts of the body such as the feet and legs are vulnerable spots that are targeted by fleas.
The reaction of flea bites tends to vary from one individual to another. In some individuals, they do not have any reaction while some can suffer from evident swelling, redness and severe itchiness within hours after being bitten. Flea bites can also bleed or developing into small-sized blisters or wounds, especially when scratched.
The swelling usually occurs only around the area of the flea bite but a rash can spread to other areas of the skin. The bite site can develop a red-colored ring that turns white when pressed. Aside from the discomfort, the flea bites can progress to serious issues such as an allergic response to the substances present in the saliva of the flea or a severe infection.
Treatment for flea bites
If an individual has been bitten by a flea, he/she must avoid scratching the bite site since it might break and allow the entry of bacteria and cause an infection. After the bite site has been washed using an antiseptic soap, this will help prevent infection. You should also place an ice pack over the affected area to minimize the itchiness and swelling.
You can also apply calamine lotion or an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream for a soothing effect as well as minimize the itchiness. A doctor must be consulted for those who have a lot of bites since antihistamine might be prescribed.
How to manage infected flea bites
In case bacteria enter the skin via an irritated bite site, cellulitis which is a serious skin infection can develop. In most cases, pus can drain from the wound. Other symptoms of cellulitis include swelling, pain as well as warmth, radiating redness and even fever and chills. If the individual is suffering from these symptoms or the bite site continues to worsen, a doctor must be consulted.