Last week we shared 10 Marvelous Facts About Mosquitoes, and now with summer upon us, we’re going in depth on one of our favorite fun facts—why mosquito bites itch. Whether you’re a mosquito magnet, aspiring entomologist, or just curious to learn more about one of Long Island’s most prominent warm weather pests, read on to learn exactly how and why mosquitoes bite, what to do if you get a mosquito bite, and how to prevent mosquitoes in your yard!
Why Do Mosquitoes Bite?
Simply put, mosquitoes bite humans and animals in order to obtain a vital protein found in the blood. This protein allows the mosquitoes to nourish their developing eggs and reproduce. Because of this, only female mosquitoes bite!
When choosing a host, mosquitoes are opportunistic, however many studies suggest that mosquitoes do sometimes prefer biting certain people and animals over others, so if you feel like you may be a mosquito magnet, it’s likely you’re correct! If you have type O blood, specific enticing body odors or bacteria present, higher than average carbon dioxide exhalation, are pregnant, or wearing dark colors, you may be on mosquitoes’ radar!
Why Are Mosquito Bites Itchy?
When a mosquito bites a host, it uses its mouthparts, which are like straws, in order to pierce the skin of the person or animal and draw their blood. In the process, the mosquito injects some of its own saliva into the affected area, which contains an anticoagulant and proteins. The anticoagulant prevents blood from clotting around the mosquito’s mouth so it doesn’t get stuck to the host, while the proteins release histamine. Histamine is a compound that enables the body’s white blood cells to access the affected area, and this increased blood flow causes inflammation, swelling, and you guessed it—itching.
How to Keep Mosquito Bites from Itching
For starters, if you’re dealing with itchy mosquito bites, resist the temptation to scratch the bite! Doing so can actually make the itchiness worse as the skin becomes more inflamed. Scratching can also lead to broken skin and infection.
How to Prevent Mosquito Bites
The best way to prevent mosquito bites starts with professional mosquito control from Suburban Exterminating. Mosquitoes need water sources to reproduce, so eliminating any potential sources of standing water, such as plant pots, buckets, your children’s outdoor toys, any tires or containers you have outside, and your pool, can help minimize the mosquito population in your yard. Keeping your grass and hedges short is another way to prevent water from collecting and turning your yard into a mosquito breeding ground.
Suburban Exterminating Protects Your Family & Home from Mosquitoes
It’s hard to enjoy the great outdoors when you’re scratching your mosquito bites. Suburban Exterminating is Long Island, New York’s leading full-service pest management company, and our Mosquito Protection Summer Package is the solution to your mosquito woes!
We are state-certified, licensed pest control technicians, and start by pinpointing the breeding sources around your property. Then, we treat your property every two weeks with our eco-friendly, child and pet-safe mosquito spray. Whether you’re looking for ongoing mosquito protection for you and your family, or you need a one-time treatment, you always get the best value in mosquito protection with Suburban Exterminating. Reclaim your yard this summer! For a free mosquito inspection and estimate, call (631) 864-6900.