Why Do Mosquito Bites Itch?

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Why Do Mosquitoes Bite?

The presence of mosquitoes at outdoor events is annoying enough, but the pests also bite. These insects have sharp mouthparts they use to pierce people’s skin and drink their blood. Female mosquitoes require the protein from these meals to produce and lay viable eggs.

Why Do Mosquito Bites Itch?

The itchiness of mosquito bites is actually an allergic reaction to the pests’ saliva. They have to inject this substance into their victims to keep blood from clotting.

Mosquito Bites and Swelling

Human bodies react to allergens in mosquito saliva by producing histamine. This compound summons white blood cells to the area. While this has the benefit of fighting off infection, it makes mosquito bites swell and feel itchy.

How Long Do Mosquito Bites Itch?

Typically, mosquito bites itch for a couple days to a week. However, people can have different levels of allergic reactions. Scratching an itchy mosquito bite can also make the problem last longer and put individuals at risk for secondary bacterial infections.

Controlling Mosquitoes

There are some best practices when it comes to avoiding itchy mosquito bites. Homeowners can:

  • Wear long sleeves and pants.
  • Eliminate pools of standing water on their property.
  • Use insect repellents.
  • Stay indoors during peak mosquito activity.

Unfortunately, none of these options are sure to keep the pests from biting. For tips on better preparing for mosquito season and more reliable control, contact the professionals at Orkin.