It might seem like a mystery, but there are reasons why mosquitoes like some people than others. If you anticipate being outdoors where mosquitoes may be lurking, here’s how to protect yourself and what changes to make if you’re susceptible to bites.
Mosquitoes have many ways to find you
You will be more susceptible to mosquitoes in these situations and if you meet the following criteria.
- What you wear: Mosquitoes are attracted to dark and bold colors like red, black, navy blue, and floral. In addition to covering up with long sleeves and pants, dress in light, neutral colors. Mosquitoes will bite through tight clothing, so loose fitted clothing is recommended.
- How you smell: Mosquitoes are drawn to floral scented soaps, deodorants, perfumes, and moisturizing lotions. It sounds gross, but they are also drawn to smelly feet or socks and your sweat or skin odor, and they will use these skin-derived chemical signals and smells to find you.
- What you eat: Strongly related to smell is what you eat or drink. Among these are drinking beer and eating Limburger cheese, which can lure mosquitoes your way.
- Your chemical composition: If you have a higher metabolic rate or warmer body temperature, mosquitos will notice.
- When you exercise: Mosquitoes are attracted to the carbon dioxide you exhale as well as the lactic acid produced by exercise.
- If you’re pregnant: Women who are pregnant can produce chemicals that attract bites.
- Your genetics and blood type: Experts say that genetics and blood type may play a role in attracting mosquitoes. Studies have found that if you have Type O blood, mosquitoes will be more interested in you.
How to prevent and treat mosquito bites
While there is no evidence that anything you eat or drink can prevent bites, mosquito repellents are an effective tool. Intermountain dermatologists at McKay-Dee Hospital, Allison Triplitt, MD, and Lana Pho, MD, recommend the following for bite prevention.
- Use repellents containing DEET. Use a lower concentration of 10 to 30 percent in kids or if you’ll only be outdoors an hour or two. Concentrations of 30 percent or higher are OK for adults or if you’ll be outdoors longer, and generally, apply DEET just once a day.
- An effective alternative to DEET is products with lemon eucalyptus oil. These are considered safer and more natural weapons.
- Always follow product label instructions no matter what repellent you use.
- Mosquitoes are most active early in the morning and early evening. Stay inside or cover up during peak activity.
To treat bites:
- Avoid scratching at all costs, as it will cause the bite to become more inflamed and itchy.
- Wash with soap and water and place a cold compress on the area.
- Take an over-the-counter antihistamine, such as Benadryl.
- Use anti-itch creams like calamine lotion or cortisol cream.
- Try baking soda mixed with water or putting a drop of lavender essential oil on a bite.
When to see a doctor
If your symptoms are severe or if you have concerns about mosquito bites that seem to be related to having a fever, headache, body aches, signs of infection, or West Nile virus talk to your doctor.
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Take out the trash regularly; keep your house spotless; store your food in airtight containers: these are just a few of the things you can do to prevent pests from coming into your home. So what attracts cockroaches to a clean house? Cockroaches are extremely versatile pests. They have a very wide-ranging diet and will eat just about anything you can imagine. They have highly tuned water-finding senses and are experts at hiding. All of these adaptations allow them to survive in just about any environment. Roaches also pose health concerns to humans. They are known to carry diseases and can trigger allergies and asthma. They are also extremely hard to get rid of once you have cockroaches in the house. But how do cockroaches get in your clean house?
Some areas are more prone to cockroaches than others. The southeastern United States, especially Georgia, Florida, and Alabama, are home to a large population of American cockroaches (also known as palmetto bugs). If you live in these areas you can expect to see these pests in your home despite cleaning on a regular basis. Unlike German cockroaches, American cockroaches aren’t associated with unsanitary conditions. They may enter your home through a gap in a window seal or through a door that is left open for a prolonged period of time.
Roaches come into your home in search of three things: food, shelter, and water. They have also developed the ability to use even the smallest of openings as an entryway into your house. They can come in through cracks in the exterior walls, dryer vents, or even the gaps between walls and floors. Perform a thorough evaluation of the exterior of your home and seal any entry points you find.
Roaches need moisture to survive and this search for water will bring them into even the cleanest of homes. Leaky pipes and faucets are one of the most common attractants for cockroaches and is one of the main reasons you often see them in bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms. They will also hide out under refrigerators and air conditioning units to indulge in their condensation, and even drink from pets’ water bowls when left out overnight. Roaches love places that are dark and undisturbed so you can often find them in basements, in the dark corners of cabinets, and underneath large appliances, especially those that use water.
Roaches will seek out food sources wherever they can find them. Despite your best efforts to keep your kitchen spotless, these resilient pests will make do with just about anything to eat. In fact, they have been known to feast on cardboard, wallpaper paste, book bindings, grease, leather, soap, and even human hair. They can often be found hiding out in stacks of cardboard in your attic and garage, books that you’ve stored away for extended periods of time, and even behind pictures that have been hanging on the walls.
While these areas may not be in need of repair or even in plain sight, they can attract roaches and need to be addressed to prevent roach infestations. Roaches have been known to hide out in the spaces between outside doors and floors. They can get into your home through window screens that aren’t flush with the frame or that have rips or tears in them. They can also get in around air conditioning units that don’t fit properly in windows, and into trash cans that aren’t cleaned regularly, even the ones in your bathrooms.
Roaches will come into your yard in search of the same things as your home: food, shelter, and water. You can harbor as many roaches in your yard as you do in your home. Any standing water in places like birdbaths, flower pots, and gutters will attract cockroaches. Compost and woodpiles provide food and shelter. Trash and recycling bins provide an excellent food source. Leaf litter, dense vegetation, and mulch or pine straw provide ideal hiding places.
Roaches are versatile pests that are extremely hard to get rid of once they get into your home. There are some roach prevention steps you can take to help keep them from invading your house:
- Seal any cracks around your home.
- Repair any water leaks.
- Remove any sources of standing water.
- Try not to overwater houseplants.
- Wipe down your kitchen counters after every meal.
- Put dirty dishes directly into the dishwasher or wash them immediately after using them instead of leaving them in the sink overnight.
- Wipe down your stove after cooking.
- Sweep daily and vacuum weekly.
- Keep firewood and compost as far away from your home as possible.
- Keep your grass and landscaping neat and tidy.
It can be frustrating to work hard at keeping your house clean and still have issues with roaches. If you have a roach problem or if you want to get a prevention program started before they become a problem, call a professional pest control company that can provide you with a customized pest control program using only the most innovative and advanced pest products and equipment available.
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Mosquitoes can be enormous pests to our horses, but even worse, they may spread diseases [disease-causing pathogens] like West Nile virus or Eastern and Western equine encephalitis (EEE and WEE). As horse owners, our goal is to minimize our horses‘ exposure to mosquitoes and their risk of being bit.
Horses draw mosquitoes for a number of reasons, and this attraction puts them at increased risk of the diseases and infections associated with bites. Large Body Size – Horses are big, of course, and that gives the mosquito more surface area to land on and explore.
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