Aug 14, 2013

Tips- Sand Flea facts and treatment for bites

In my previous posts I had narrated with photographs that how much fun I had in Southern Florida. I had also posted about J N Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge where I had terrible Sand Flea attack! I had a very bad time because I was unaware of such things on the beach or marshy lands. And I couldn't do much other than applying moisturizer to the bites which didn't help at all! And so I thought of putting some information together for the benefit of others.

Some Facts- Sand fleas are not insects! They come under family crustacea! Because the sting in their bites they are often mistaken for insects. They bite like mosquitoes and for some time we think so, but they are more serious. If you are allergic then they are very serious! The swelling could be much and painful. Female sand fleas get under the skin and might lay eggs, in this situation one should look for medical help. They are many in numbers in spring and active during cool mornings and evenings. 

How to Avoid- Wear long sleeves shirts and long trousers with elastic at the ankles when you are walking during mornings and evenings in the SF-infested area. Use covered footwear. Use bug spray which repel insects. Use a beach/lounge chair to lie on. Wash the sand away from your body. Do not go near seaweed or drift wood on the beach! These creatures love to feed on them.

Relief from the bites- Many talk about different solutions, most of them only give relief not cure. Here I am listing few. Apply Calamine lotion, Benadryl syrup, lime juice, cactus juice  to control itch. Take antihistamine tablets also work for some.

It itches very bad but do not scratch. I did that and the large blisters turned into open wounds and swelling. It was painful for about a week. It is better to be aware of fleas and avoid them than looking for relief!

Do you have any other remedies? Please share, it will help others!

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  1. Oh my gosh. We've been to ding darling a bunch of times and didn't get bitten.. We are there in the winter; maybe the fleas are only active in the spring? It sound painful... I do get mosquito bites and I'm very sensitive to them. I use a product called ChiggerX, which kills the itch, but is very messy and stains clothing and bed linens. But it's all I found that works.

    1. They are many in numbers during spring. I made the mistake of going off the road near to the marsh to get a good shot of a bird. Yes, I am allergic to mosquito bites too and will try this ChiggerX. Thank you Sallie!


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