Sand Flies – Bites and Treatment

Most people getting bit by sand flies often mistakenly call them sandflea bites. It is important to know that they are not the same thing. Sand fleas are crustaceans that are related to the same species as shrimp that can be found on the beach, while the sandfly is a blood sucking insect. The majority of people who use the term sand fleas or often referring to sand flies.

This article explains the types of bites you will get from sand flies and the treatments you can use to deal with them.

If you are a beach goer and like to go to the beach in the evenings to take in the cool fresh breeze, you better watch out for Sand Flies – small blood sucking insects that are less than 1/8 of an inch or 3 mm in length. Sand flies are insects belonging to the PhlebotomiNae family of Diptera. Similar to all aquatic arthropods, these Sand Flies have a segmented body structure with an exterior skeleton system made out of chitin. Moreover, Sand Flies are well known for their variety of names.

sand fly leg bitesSand Flies –  Bites on Humans

Sand Flies are worse than mosquitoes even if they are small in size. They can bite painfully around the ankles most of the time. Sand Flies usually bite on areas that have exposed skin. Sand Flies can be found in wetlands, creeks, the beach and in swamplands. Should you see a piece of seaweed on the beach accompanied with a high pitched whine, you’ll be sure to find a group of Sand Flies buzzing around. If so, get away as fast as possible maintaining a good 100 meters away distance. Sand Flies like to live and feed on organic and rotting plants as well. Only a female Sand fly bites as they need the protein from human blood to be able to lay their eggs.

Sand Fly Bite Treatment

Click here to See AfterBite – The Itch Eraser

Most importantly, should you have been bitten by a Sand Fly, it would be best not to scratch the welts. In doing so, will reduce the risk of having an infection on that area. Avoiding having to scratch at the bites will help avoid other symptoms of swelling, itchiness and skin redness. There are times when a Sand Fly can bury itself underneath the skin while continuing with feeding on blood. No matter how itchy it may be, this can be reduced and controlled by using a topical cream having anti-histamines. For Sand fly bite relief, pain killers like ibuprofen gels can be taken. Should the pain or itchiness worsen it would be best to seek medical advice.

As flies are carriers of a number of diseases, there is a possibility that you may get a fever and get sick with Leishmaniasis, if so; sodium stibogluconate is the effective treatment for it but has the possibility of recurring.

Sand Flies are popular in beaches around the world, such as in  the Middle East, South East Asia, Central America, Mediterranean and the Caribbean. Over 12 million people have been suffering from Leishmaniasis which is a type of malaria. Another illness is Carrions disease and Pappataci fever. Having an insect repellant is still effective and practical. Have them ready beside you if you are at the beach to wards off any insects and flies.

 Click here to view the top Recommended Products for Sandflies

24 thoughts on “Sand Flies – Bites and Treatment

  1. Nita

    I’m in St. Thomas and have about 60 horrible sand flea bites. It’s easy to say…”don’t scratch the bites” but when you are sleeping, you can’t help it. Applying GIN (yes you heard me) helps stop the puritis….but only for 30 minutes. Oral Benedryl helps as does Motrin. I’m scared to go near the sand. My boyfriend has NO bites….I guess my blood is sweeter than his??!! Will try oatmeal bath today. What a horrible way to spend my time in this beautiful spot!!

    1. Jeri Hambleton

      Oatmeal doesn’t help, lemon and dawn. You can get dawn in the skin formula and then call a vet. Im serious.

  2. Sonia

    I own a sand flea preserve.
    The little parasites love me now, and never bite me ever!
    (well they NEVER bit me in the beginning either.)
    I don’t know why but sand fleas never bite me, no matter how much I do things with them.

    -Sonia Midness

  3. Joan Rue

    i just returned from florida, i have sores all over my body, could i have brought the fleas home with me? my bodfy is still itchy but not as bad as it was in florida.

  4. Joan Rue

    i just returned from a month in fort Laurdale, my body is all broken out with what looks like bites, the land lady of the place said they could be sand flea bites, i have never been biten before also, the person who is sleeping in the room i was in a month also is all biten up, only that room seems to have a problem, should i seek medical help? did i bring these mites back in my skin to NewJ Jersy,please help?

  5. carolyn klebesadel

    Ca and the house that he is in becomen a dog carry sand fleas from a beach area to the desert and then that home become I’m infested?

  6. carolyn klebesadel

    can a dog that’s infested with sand fleas from a beach area move to the desert and then that home become I’m infested?

    1. Jeri Hambleton

      yes, call your vet, your house is next if not already..then to you and I am serious. Been fighting them a long time, after 16 months I found out from my local vet and 20 dollars worth of spray that there is an option.

  7. Mary Ann

    I’ve been looking for what is causing my sores. Mainly on m y legs almost
    ever doctor I’ve been to ether insults me by asking how often do I shower,
    or how often I change my sheets even saying t hey are bed bug bites. I
    I didn’t know bed bugs bites last for years and are at least the diameter of
    a #2 pencil eraser.
    I live about two blocks from the beach and due t o physical problems I have two raise my legs on the couch. Anyway my daughter takes her miniature dashoud to the beach at least once a week then comes to visit me.

    1. Jeri Hambleton

      Read about sand flies too. they come in screens of your home. your local vet will know the foliage and may have a easy and cheap solution.

  8. Mary Ann

    I was cut off ; Any way her dog plays on my couch a ll the times, until
    I have groups of bites as soon as I get 1 patch under control, another starts .
    How can I find out if they are sand fleas on my own? When I place
    Duct tape over the bites/sores, the it itching becomes intense so I
    Place a cold pack over the area. Does this sound like sand fleas? The pictures

  9. Mary Ann

    Look exactly like mine. Do you have any upclose? If so please put them on your site. My daughter has been to he French Virgin Islands of c
    course with her dog. I’m going crazy. Mary

  10. paul

    last weekend attacked by hundreds of sand fleas feel like scratching legs and arms using lots of caladril been 4 days and still cant sleep

    1. Jeri Hambleton

      I would call my vet. If you have sand and you have any animals, even if not yours like outdoor birds. Yes, I wouldn’t put them past the flight.

  11. Debbie Whiting

    I just moved into a house that had a large above ground pool ,and I am wondering what the chances are of having fleas in the sand that was under the pool?

  12. Jeri Hambleton

    I live in the panhandle of OKLA where there is a lot of sand because of oil. I have been around here 45 years and the last 2 years my 6 bed house has become a war zone. After thousands of dollars, a 20$ bottle from my vet helped, still fighting the fight. I would not put anything up against a sand flea or fly. They can get in with the wind and this is truth, found them in the screen. I don’t know where you live but even your ORkin guy is not always right. Call your vet.


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