Bedbug vs. Flea Bites: Which One Do I Have

However, if you have an infestation, you’ll need a professional pest control company to come and treat your home with pesticides.

For example, bedbug bites may be slightly bigger (the size of a mosquito bite) and tend to occur on skin exposed at night, like the face, arms, and legs. On the other hand, fleabites are smaller and tend to appear on the ankles and feet.

Fleabites look similar to bedbug bites on human skin but tend to be smaller. Like bedbug bites, they also generally form in a cluster or line because they mark the best spots to bite before they start feeding.

Flea Bites vs. Bed Bug Bites: Different Symptoms, Treatments ...

Bed Bug Bites vs. Flea Bites: How To Tell the Difference

Flea Bites vs Bed Bug Bites (Key Differences Explained)

Bedbug bites typically appear on skin that is exposed while you sleep. That means bedbug bites often appear on the face, arms, and legs. They are similar in size to a hive or mosquito bite.

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Location and Size: Bedbug Bites vs. Fleabites

You’ll only realize you’ve been bitten by bed bugs when small marks appear on your skin. While everyone reacts to bed bug bites differently, bed bug bites, in general, look similar to mosquito bites, with a point in the middle (called a punctum) where the actual bite occurred, Tania Elliott, MD, who works in NYU Langone’s Department of Infectious Disease, Allergy and Immunology, told Health. Bed bug bites also have the following characteristics:

Continue to inspect for bedbugs after treatment every seven days in case any eggs hatch in the meantime. Fumigation, either done yourself or by a professional, may also be performed. They may use sulfuryl fluoride gas, available under brand names including Vikane and Zythor.

While bed bugs are found mainly in living areas, it’s important to know that their presence isn’t determined by the cleanliness of the living conditions where they’re located.

Bed Bug Bites vs. Flea Bites: How to Tell the Difference

bed bug bites what do they look like

Corinne Savides Happel, MD, is an allergist and assistant professor at the John Hopkins School of Medicine.

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Editor’s Note

Treating the bites is only the beginning. Next, you will need to eradicate the source of the bedbug bites or fleabites. Hopefully, there will be clues to the cause of the bite, but sometimes you may need to investigate further.

Bed bug bites and flea bites can be tough to tell apart. Health spoke to experts to find out how to differentiate between the two.

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Bed bugs bite vs. Flea Bite: What's the Difference?

Bug bites are annoying for multiple reasons, one of which is that it’s not always easy to know what kind of insect is to blame for the bites. Many bug bites look and feel similar.

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What Do Bed Bug Bites Look and Feel Like?

A primary goal with bedbug and flea bites is to control the itch so you don’t break open the skin and cause an infection. Things like oatmeal baths and tepid showers can help manage itching.

This article contains sensitive medical imagery.

Bedbug vs. Flea Bites: Which One Do I Have

Bed Bug Bites Vs Flea Bites How To Tell The Difference | Images and ...

Applying a DEET-based insect repellent can help you ward off flea bites. “The active ingredient in DEET is recommended for effective, long-lasting protection against fleas and other insects,” Dr. Elliott said.

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Bed Bugs

Bedbug bites and fleabites share many qualities, including itching, rash, and bite patterns. But there are ways to tell them apart.

Reproduced with permission from © DermNet dermnetnz.org 2023.

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