Human Flea

The Human Flea is the common name for Pulex Irritans. It is found all over the globe and not specific to any one place. The human flea feeds off the blood of its host and not necessarily always a human being. This specie of parasite is also known to feed off the blood of other mammals such as pigs (most commonly), rodents and badgers. The dog and cat flea are probably more likely to be found in your home (if you have pets) rather than the human flea, unless perhaps you’re a pig farmer.

The human flea is a very small wingless parasite. The adults grow up to almost 4 mm in length and are dark brown. They are hard and resilient insects which have adapted tube like mouths that allow them to pierce the skin and suck blood. Like the dog and cat flea, they have a similar lifecycle (egg, larvae, pupae, adult). The adults can jump 150 x their body length and 80 x their height making it easy to move from one host to another. A female can produce up to 950 eggs if left to reproduce and multiply.

the human flea

This parasite may be small, but it is able to carry serious diseases from one person to another (and from infected mammals to humans) as well as cause allergic reactions to many. The human flea can spread typhus and tapeworm. Although it wasn’t directly responsible for transmitting the bubonic plague from one to another, it could also carry the disease!

Human Flea Bites

human flea bite

If you have human flea bites, you will experience a small raised red bump with a single puncture wound in the middle of it. It may well be very itchy, depending on how one reacts. Some people do not itch, yet others may swell up and cause an allergic reaction. Bites are often found in clusters, round the ankles and legs. You should avoid scratching any bites, look to clean the area and soothe any pain. If bites are scratched, they may become infected and cause you more discomfort as well as illness.

Human Flea Control

Human Flea Treatment - To treat bites, start by cleaning the area of skin with an antiseptic soap and cold water. Do not use warm water as it may further aggravate the bite. If the bites have become swollen then you can try to reduce the swelling by placing ice on them. An anti-itch cream or calamine lotion could then be applied to take some of the irritation away. If however the bites are infected and remain swollen you should seek medical advice from a doctor or walk-in center. The nurse may apply a solution such as iodine to dry the area out and then cover it up for protection. Always look to prevent parasites from biting you and being brought into your home/yard on your pets or via wild animals. Wear appropriate clothing and repellents if you are to go near any infested areas. Also, give your pets the best chance by providing them with a healthy nutritional diet and a proven repellent that will put the nasty parasites off.

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