The things we cannot see are sometimes that scariest, and chiggers have no exemption to that. These tiny pests are microscopic. So, your naked eye will not see them. However, their bites cause an intense itch and unpleasant rashes.
If you worry about chiggers and their bites, this post will help you become knowledgeable about them. Keep reading!
What are Chiggers
Chiggers are tiny mites that belong to the arthropod family called “Trombiculidae.” They go by a number of names, including duck-shooters, harvest mites, scrub mites, itch mites, and red bugs. They are often mistaken as scabies mites.
These tiny mites only live up to two months and live both on humans and animals. What do they look like? Well, they measure from 1/20-1/150th of an inch long. They are almost invisible due to their extremely tiny size. They often have bright red colors, but they can also be light yellow or orange.
Where to Find Chiggers
Chiggers are commonly found in low-lying, damp areas like brush thickets, blackberry patches, and forests. You can also find them in gardens, grassy areas and parks, around lakes, rivers, and streams, and along margins of swamps.
These microscopic pests thrive in areas where vegetation is ranked, and grass and weeds are overgrown. Adults overwinter deep within the soil. During the spring months, they emerge to lay eggs. After hatching, the larvae feed for several days. After that, they fall off their host to develop into nymphs and grow into mature mites.
How Do Chiggers Feed
Contrary to the belief, chiggers do not suck blood or burrow into the skin. They feed on skin cells that humans and animals shed. They attach to vegetation or grass and wait for hosts to pass by where they cling onto. When they cling onto you, they migrate to the skin area where they can feed.
Your body areas where there are folds and wrinkles and skin is thin are the most common areas for them to bite. They bite by inserting their mouthparts and feeding the structure into the skin.
Once their enzymes are injected, the tissue is then destroyed and hardens the area. As a result, a feeding tube is formed. Chiggers use that tube to feed on the skin for several days. On average, they feed up to four days before dropping off the host.
What Do Chigger Bites Look Like
Chigger bites cause extremely unpleasant feelings. These bites form reddish welts within 24 hours of being bitten. You may also experience an intense itching and red rash. They sometimes look like red bumps or blisters on the skin.
When you notice that the bites are too itchy and scratching already causes infection, you need to seek a medical attention. These tiny creatures may not be vectors for viruses and transmit diseases; they still cause discomfort for a few days.
What Makes Chigger Bites Intensely Itchy
Your immune system response is the allergic reaction to chigger bites. That causes a scabby rash and intense itching. These tiny creatures are attracted to tight spaces, such as socks cuff, leg bang, and waistband where clothes are snug. They often feed on places that create an intense and uncomfortable itch.
How to Get Rid of Chiggers
One of the best ways to get rid of chiggers is to determine where they live. As mentioned above, the ideal habitat for them is a shady place with thick vegetation and plenty of moisture. Ensure to stay away from these areas. Then, you can try the following methods to prevent them:
Mow the Lawn Regularly
Beware that chiggers like to live in tall grass. One way to eliminate them is to keep the grass mowed regularly.
Treat the Yard
You can use environmentally friendly lawn care insecticides to get rid of these tiny pests. Apply it alongside a lawn spreader for best results. If you prefer a natural approach, you can go for sulfur pellets and apply them with a spreader.
Chiggers find a thick vegetation a perfect place to live in. So, ensure to remove overgrown, weedy areas.
Wash Clothes Immediately
If you love the outdoors, there is a big chance that you will catch chiggers. That is especially true during chigger season. So, after going out, wash your clothes as soon as possible. That way, you can prevent the pest from spreading through your home.
Do Not Sit on the Grounds
As much as possible, avoid sitting on the ground. You also need to stay away from rock walls as they may live on them.
Consider Strong Odors
Did you know that chiggers do not like strong odors? So, it is also recommended to create an unpleasant aroma to them. You can take sulfur supplements but consult your doctor first. You can also eat a clove of garlic each day, few days before you go outside.
How to Treat Chigger Bites
The healing process of chigger bites will take 1-3 weeks. Once you suspect that you have these bites, use soap and clean water to wash them as soon as possible. It will also eliminate the remaining chiggers on the body. Then, do not forget to apply an antiseptic to the welts.
Ensure to avoid scratching the affected areas to prevent any infections. You can relieve the itchiness by apply ice to the bites. You can also use anti-itch medications, such as calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream.
If you love very hot showers or baths, try to avoid them in the meantime. If you notice that the symptoms do not improve, ensure to consult your doctor for immediate diagnosis and medication. It is a misconception that these tiny pests burrow under the skin. The truth is they don’t.
Synergy² Exterminator: Pest Control Jackson MS
Whether you are always outside or only attend outdoor activities several times, you can still catch chiggers. So, ensure to stay from the areas where they live as much as possible. Chigger bites cause extremely intense itch and rashes. If you want to ensure that your surrounding is chigger-free, do not hesitate contact Synergy2 Pest Control.
Visit our official website and learn more about our services.
Feel free to read more about us and decide if Synergy² is the right company for you. We have over 270 Five-Star Google reviews for pest control service in the Jackson metro area (Jackson/Madison/Brandon/Ridgeland). Check out our newest location reviews for pest control service in Jackson, MS here at Synergy² Jackson Pest Control!