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MOSQUITO BITE TREATMENT & RELIEF

There are over 3,000 mosquito species in the world1, but only a small number of these species primarily bite humans. Find out what to do when mosquitoes do bite and how to help control that annoying itch.

A young woman applying an anti-itch lotion to a mosquito bite on her arm.

Mosquito bites are no fun for anyone. So, when these blood-sucking vampires do get their mouthparts on you, it’s important to know a few proven tricks to help treat mosquito bites and keep them from itching. Find out what to do to help protect your family and make mosquito bites more bearable.

WHAT IS A MOSQUITO BITE?

Mosquito bites are the itchy, red bumps that appear on your skin after being bitten by a female mosquito.

After landing on you, the female mosquito inserts four sharp mouthparts into your skin to probe in the tissue until striking a small blood vessel, or capillary. She uses one mouthpart to suck up blood and another mouthpart to inject saliva into your skin. Her saliva acts as an anticoagulant that allows your blood to flow more easily

WHY DO MOSQUITO BITES ITCH?

The itchy sensation you feel after getting bitten by a mosquito is your body’s natural reaction to the mosquito’s saliva. Your immune system identifies the saliva as a foreign invader and produces histamines to fight it. This can cause the nerves to itch due to increased blood flow to the area. When too much histamine is released, the area around the mosquito bite can swell up and turn red in addition to itching.

WHAT IS A MOSQUITO BITE ALLERGY?2,3

The good news is that many adults have become desensitized to mosquito saliva from being bitten throughout their lives. However, some people can have an allergic reaction to the proteins in mosquito saliva, which can cause a large area of swelling, redness, itching, pain, and heat. Mosquito allergies, also called skeeter syndrome, are most common in children, people with immune system disorders, and adults who have not been previously exposed to the type of mosquito that bit them.

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WHY DO MOSQUITOES BITE?

Both male and female mosquitoes feed on nectar and plant sap, but only female mosquitoes feed on blood. This is because female mosquitoes need the protein from blood to develop and nourish their eggs so they can create the next generation of blood-sucking pests.

HOW LONG DO MOSQUITO BITES LAST?

The duration of the itch and signature red bump of a mosquito bite varies from person to person. The itching can last as little as a few minutes to as long as a few days.

HOW DO YOU TREAT A MOSQUITO BITE?

To help stop mosquito bites from itching, the most important thing is to stop scratching. While this may sound counterintuitive (and take a lot of willpower!), scratching a mosquito bite can make the skin become more inflamed and irritated. You also run the risk of breaking the skin, which can cause an infection and make the mosquito bite itch even more.

MOSQUITO BITE TREATMENT CHECKLIST2

For temporary relief from that annoying itch, try these simple mosquito bite treatment tips from the Mayo Clinic:

  • Press something cold to the area to reduce blood flow, like ice or a cooling pack.

  • Put calamine lotion, baking soda paste, or an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream on the bite to help reduce inflammation and relieve the itch.

  • Take an oral antihistamine if the mosquito bite is very itchy.

ARE MOSQUITO BITES DANGEROUS?

If you break the skin while scratching, the bite can become infected. In addition, bites from mosquitoes carrying viruses or parasites can transmit diseases to humans that can cause severe illness and sometimes be fatal. Learn how to help protect your family from mosquito-borne infections, including malaria,West Nile Virus,dengue,Zika virus, yellow fever, andChikungunya.

HOW CAN I HELP AVOID MOSQUITO BITES?

Now that you know how to treat and help keep a mosquito bite from itching,find out what attracts mosquitoesto learn how to help protect you and your loved ones from getting those itchy bites in the first place.

FIND SOLUTIONS FOR MOSQUITOES

Explore our family of products designed to help you keep mosquitoes away and avoid getting bitten by these pesky creatures.


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