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 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
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.