Here’s How To Identify And Treat Summer’s Worst Bug Bites And Stings

3. Fire Ants

Fire ants are a reddish color and typically nest in the ground in grassy areas. If disturbed, they can attack in swarms and sting you multiple times. Their stings can become swollen and infected, with severe symptoms including nausea, dizziness, and difficulty breathing. If you’ve been stung and are suffering from an allergic reaction, get medical care. For milder treatment, ice the area for 15-minute intervals with the site of the sting elevated. Apply hydrocortisone cream or take an antihistamine as needed.

2. Ticks

Ticks — which live in wooded or immensely vegetated areas — are bloodsuckers that are capable of spreading disease. They don’t bite as much as they stick their head into your skin to feed on blood. If a tick bites you, you’ll probably find it attached to your skin. To remove a tick, place a pair of tweezers around the body as close to the head as possible, and pull the tick straight out. Clean the affected area with soap and warm water, and apply alcohol to prevent further infection. See a doctor if parts of the tick cannot be removed or if you develop a fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, or muscle aches.

1. Jellyfish

Jellyfish may not be a typical summer pest to some, but those who live on the coasts know that they can sting. If you’ve been stung, avoid rubbing or touching the wound and rinse the affected area with saltwater. Use an ID or credit card to remove the venom-filled tentacles and treat the wound with a vinegar rinse. This not only acts as an antibacterial agent, but also numbs the pain. Use baking soda paste as well if needed. Immerse the affected area in hot water or take a hot shower to help stop the sting, or you can apply ice to help relieve pain. Seek immediate medical help if the sting covers more than half of your arm or leg, if the sting came from a box jellyfish, or if you have severe reactions that include nausea, dizziness, or difficulty breathing.

These aren’t the only insects out there this summer that may be looking for a tasty human treat. Deer flies look similar to houseflies, but have the added element of biting. Treat their bites with soap and water. Mites and fleas are small, but they have a big bite — literally. These bites might require prescription medication. However, the best way to fight pest bites is to prevent them. Wear bug repellent, protective clothing, and keep an eye out for potential problems.

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