Answering Tampa's Questions About Mosquito Bites

We get a lot of questions about mosquitoes. The majority of those questions have to do with mosquito bites. So, today, we're going to take a few minutes to talk about mosquito bites and give you some important insight into these irritating and potentially dangerous pests. 

Mosquito bite

Why do mosquitoes bite you?

First, it is important to point out that only female mosquitoes bite. Male mosquitoes do not have a "stinger" that is strong enough to break the skin, nor does it need to feed on blood. A male uses its elongated, sucking mouthparts to draw nectar and plant sap for food. Females feed on nectar and plant sap as well, but they use their "stinger" to draw blood from warm-blooded animals. Why? Because blood contains vital proteins and amino acids necessary for the maturation of her eggs. Without blood, a female is not able to reproduce. 

Is it bad if a mosquito bites you?

When a mosquito bites your skin, you may not realize it. The saliva of a mosquito acts as an anticoagulant. It thins out the blood so it can flow without impedance and discomfort. Most people have a mild reaction to mosquitoes' saliva, which causes the redness, swelling, and itchiness associated with mosquito bites. If this were the only danger, we could say, "No, it isn't bad if a mosquito bites you." Unfortunately, a mosquito could have bitten someone else before biting you, or it could have bitten an animal. Suppose the human or animal that preceded you had an infectious disease, and the mosquito can incubate it in its gut and transfer it to its salivary glands. In that case, you are in danger of contracting a disease.

Some of the diseases spread by mosquitoes:

  • West Nile virus

  • Malaria

  • Chikungunya

  • Yellow fever

  • Dengue fever

  • Zika virus

  • And several forms of encephalitis

How many times will one mosquito bite you?

If a female mosquito is uninterrupted, she can bite one time. Often, we wiggle, wave our arms, and do other things that prevent mosquitoes from getting a full belly. They are more than capable of biting several times if necessary.

Can a mosquito bite you through your clothing?

It depends on the clothing. If you wear a thin shirt, a mosquito can push its mouthparts through the material or a pore in the fabric and get you. We recommend applying mosquito repellent to your clothing for added protection.

Are there smells that can prevent mosquitoes from biting you?

Many scents are unpleasant to mosquitoes. Here is a shortlist of natural scents that are known to have some repellent impact.

  • Lemon eucalyptus

  • Citronella

  • Lavender

  • Lemongrass

  • Lemon balm

  • Garlic

  • Rosemary

  • Peppermint

  • Basil

If you use essential oils to ward off mosquito bites, be aware that they do not last long. You'll need to apply them as frequently as every 15 minutes. Lemon eucalyptus oil, which is not an essential oil, is the only natural product that lasts as long as a synthetic repellent.

How do I stop getting bitten by mosquitoes?

There are many ways to limit exposure to mosquitoes and deter mosquitoes from biting you. You're probably aware of most of them.

  • Mosquito repellent is the number one deterrent, but applying these products is inconvenient and unpleasant every time you go out into your backyard.

  • Nets can keep mosquitoes off of you, but they create a barrier and make it more difficult to enjoy nature while you're outside. It is also possible to bring a mosquito in with you when you enter a screened area.

  • Mosquito-repellent plants can help keep mosquitoes away, but, like essential oils, you have to rub the plants frequently to achieve the benefits.

  • A strong fan can keep mosquitoes off you, but this will only give you protection while you're in one place.

  • Wearing bright colors, long sleeves, and pants can make it harder for mosquitoes to target you and give them less real estate to bite, but a determined female mosquito is likely to find a way.

The Best Solutions To Prevent Mosquitoes In Your Backyard

If you want to go out into your yard and enjoy yourself, there is no better way to prevent mosquitoes, and unwanted bites, than to invest in seasonal mosquito control. This service breaks the cycle of reproduction in your yard and severely reduces the mosquito population. Since most of the mosquitoes that bite you in your yard are mosquitoes that hatch in your yard, mosquito control can have a significant impact.

If you live in Tampa, consider investing in mosquito control from Bold Servicing. We can make your yard a nicer place to be and give you essential protection from mosquito-borne diseases. Reach out to us today to learn more or to schedule service.