When it comes to bug bites, we all have that one friend who claims they have the “juiciest blood” because they are always being bitten. To some extent, we can’t help but feel it must have some truth to it. On a vacation, some people come out covered in more mosquito bites than sun kissed freckles. Meanwhile, others could sleep with the window wide open, no repellent, yet come out completely free of any bites.
This isn’t just the case with mosquito bites. If you have noticed fleas in your home, more often than not there will be one family member who is being noticeably targeted by their bites. Of course, this strange phenomenon brings with it many questions; why are fleas attracted to me? Why do fleas only bite certain humans? What attracts fleas to certain humans? And, if you are the typical victim of flea bites, you are probably wondering what on earth you can do to prevent this from happening.
Well, look no further, as in this article I aim to answer all of your flea-based questions. By the end of this post you will know why you are such a delicacy to those blood-suckers. But also you will hopefully have some new methods to help go from being the target, to being the one laughing at everyone else’s bite-ridden legs.
Why are fleas attracted to me?
There are a number of theories as to why fleas are more attracted to some people rather than others.
One of the most obvious and reasonable suggestions is that fleas are attracted to certain chemical compositions. This means that due to the differing skin secretion and gas emissions from person to person, some people are more desirable to fleas.
Our release of different gasses, such as carbon dioxide, vary for every individual. This can alter the flea’s attraction towards you. It really can be as simple (and unlucky) as your chemical makeup drawing in those nasty pests.
Further to your chemical makeup, many argue that fleas may signal to other fleas once they have found a desired host.
Once a flea has had a taste of your delicious, warm blood, they let the others know. If you are unlucky enough to be the first host of your household, it may be possible that the other fleas are simply jumping on the bandwagon.
Should you act as an appropriate host, and the fleas have signaled this to each other, much like the way humans get comfortable with what they know, so do fleas. If they are satisfied with everything your blood is providing them, then they have no reason to look elsewhere or to tell their little flea friends to do so either!
Many people argue that fleas don’t actually have a preference. Whether you want to hear it or not, you might not actually be as favorable as you like to think. It may be down to the simple fact that you are exposing more skin than other people in your household, making you an easy target for fleas.
Wearing shorts or tops that expose your arms means that fleas have easy access to both your arms and legs. Your skin a lot more accessible for them. Because of this, it is likely they would choose you as their host as opposed to another member of your household who may be more covered up.
Fleas do not have the understanding to fight their way through or under clothing unless they have no other alternative. So, the more clothing the better if you are trying to fight away the creepy crawlies.
Finally, one reason that may not be so common but is still worth considering, is the potential allergies you may have.
If you are allergic to flea bites it is likely that you are responding to the saliva secreted by fleas.
Having any kind of allergic reaction, mild or severe, may cause your skin to flare up more than those who do not suffer with any flea allergies. This means that bites will be a lot more prominent and the redness and itching may be more severe.
Although it may just appear a lot more visible and obvious, allergic reactions may also increase the tenderness of your skin. And so fleas, again, would find it a much easier and more accessible host than someone who has tougher skin.
Why do fleas only bite certain humans?
Whilst it may seem that fleas are only attracted to certain humans and only bite certain humans, a lot like other insects, the reasons above can simply make one person a lot more appealing than others. But it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the insect having a specific preference.
What attracts fleas to certain humans is highly down to how accessible their skin is. As mentioned, exposing a lot of your skin makes you a lot more vulnerable to flea bites.
Similarly, having tender skin caused by a flea allergy can make your skin a lot more appealing to a flea as it is a lot more tender. Your allergy may also make the bites a lot more prominent, but doesn’t necessarily mean you are actually being bitten more.
It is likely however, that there is no specific reason you are being targeted. So ensuring you prevent any flea from biting you in the first place is the best way to avoid them altogether.
How do I stop fleas from biting?
So, whilst allergies and genetic makeup may have some impact on how likely you are to be bitten, it is more likely down to the accessibility of your skin. Preventing a flea from biting you in the first place will go on to stop them from signaling to others.
Wear long sleeves and trousers
This can be done by wearing more clothes around the house. Or make sure your arms and legs are covered, particularly when you are sleeping. Fleas are a lot more prone to biting and finding a host when the host is still and peaceful as it is a lot easier for the flea to get to work.
Preventing the fleas from reaching your skin in the first place will stop any allergic reactions and stop the flea signaling to other fleas, overall preventing you ever being bitten.
Making sure you are not only cleaning yourself, but also your clothes and house is a fantastic way to prevent flea bites.
Fleas can live in your clothing and furniture.. So making sure everything is cleaned thoroughly will prevent the fleas continuing to live and spread through your house.
It is important that you clean everywhere, and not just the areas of the person who has been bitten. If one person or pet is suffering from flea bites, it is likely the fleas may have spread to other household members, even if this is not yet visible. So cleaning as many places as you can is a great way to get rid of fleas.
Whilst you can do very little about your genetic makeup, if you do suffer from flea allergies then it is important to get this checked.
You can speak to your doctor for more details regarding your allergy. But using certain antiseptic creams may help stop your bites from becoming infected. They will be less itchy and therefore less noticeable.
It is important to remember that whilst wearing more clothing or finding repellents and creams that will help prevent bites can be really helpful, if fleas are present in your home then it is crucial that you remove them.
You will need to ensure your pets are treated for fleas. And it is likely the fleas have traveled in on them.
Why do fleas bite me and no one else? And other FAQs
There could be a number of different reasons. There may be something in your chemical markup that attracts fleas, and they signal to each other that you’re a good host. You can be wearing clothing that exposes your skin to fleas. But the bottom line is there is no specific reason.
Use anti-flea creams to ward off fleas from you. You should also clean around the house, in case fleas are living there.
Why do fleas bite me and no one else? It might not be what you think
There are a number of reasons that may make you seem a lot more appealing and tasty than someone else in your household.
Whilst genetic makeup may have an impact on this, it is a lot more likely that your skin is simply more accessible than other people’s. Ensure that you cover up as much as possible.
If you suffer from any form of allergy, your bites may be a lot bigger, redder or more painful. Meaning they will stand out a lot more than other people’s bites and may seem like you have many more.
Whilst it is important to treat your bites and to cover up, the main way to prevent being bitten is to fully clean your house of any fleas. Clean your clothing and bedding, and ensure your pets undergo any necessary flea-removal treatment.
Getting rid of fleas temporarily will not help in the long run. Once they begin to breed again, you will begin to be bitten again.
Thoroughly removing all fleas from the home is an excellent way to stop biting. But whilst doing so just make sure you cover up as much as possible!