Monsters on Me: Insects that Live on the Human Body

We’ve all heard of various parasites and insects living inside our bodies, but what of insects living on us? This isn’t just a mite problem a simple pest control can deal with; it might take more than that.

Here are the insects that creep and live on the human body. Beware because after reading this you might have an urge to take a bath.

Eyelash Mite

Eyelash Mire Pest control

Demodex folliculorum or eyelash mites, are tiny parasitic mites living in the hair follicles of your face. These are found mostly on your eyelashes but can also in the nose and cheeks. Generally, eyelash mites are not harmful. Almost everybody probably has them and won’t notice there’s a parasite feeding off of their oils. In fact, scientists claim there is a sort of symbiotic relationship between eyelash mites and humans— we let them live on our faces, while they in turn remove the dirt and oil from our hair follicles.

While having eyelash mites has benefits, the adage too much of anything isn’t good applies to them as well. Demodicosis is the phenomenon of having so much eyelashes mites on your face that it becomes infected and your eyelashes fall off. This usually happens to people who have too much make-up or who don’t remove it before sleeping.

It’s important to keep your face clean. You may use tea tree products and no tear baby soap on your face twice a day. If you suspect you have demodicosis, avoid wearing make-up for at least two weeks. Once you’re allowed to wear make-up again, be sure to replace your old kit with a new one. Lastly, regularly change your sheets and pillow cases with clean ones.

Scabies Mite

Scabies Mite

Infestation starts when the female burrows into the skin. A male then moves into the burrow site and mates with the female. The male mite dies afterwards, and the female begins laying the eggs. After a few days the eggs hatch and move to the surface of the skin to mature, then the cycle repeats again.

Scabies are severely itchy and can be transmitted through direct contact. They are also resistant to soap and hot water. You will have skin rashes that will look like small red bumps and blisters.

You’ll need to go to the doctor once you suspect your itch is because of scabies. If the doctor confirms this, you will need immediate treatment. Medication to treat scabies is mostly for external use only might be told to apply it on your skin from the neck down.

Head Louse

Pest Control Louse

Head louse (commonly known plural form, head lice) are wingless parasites spread through personal contact or by sharing hats, combs, and other head accessories. This is usually a common problem with children.

You may feel a tickling when you have lice because they’re moving on your head. This makes you itch until you get small red sore bumps which may lead to bacterial infection. Usually when one is infected with lice, everyone else in the family should be treated.

Doctors recommend using a medicated shampoo, lotion, or cream rinse. Depending on how dire the lice situation is, external medication may be enough but if it’s severe, you may be required to take oral medication. Expect that it will take a few days for the itching to stop.

Human Botfly

Botfly_Topbest

The human botfly, also known as torsalo, is one of many fly species considered to be parasites to humans. Botflies infest the skin and live the larval stage in the subcutaneous layer of the skin. The lesion caused by the larvae will become hard and painful; sometimes people can even feel the larvae moving as they take a bath.

When infested with the botfly, your white cell count will elevate and a significant amount of macrophage will be found around the wood and this is why pus is usually secreted.

These are just some of the insects found on humans. You’ve probably heard of the more common ones like dust mites, bed bugs, and ticks; but the ones listed here are equally dangerous or vexing, surprisingly not well-known. Keep a look out for signs and symptoms so that you can keep yourself and your family from being infected.

 

Bugs inside Me: 5 Human Parasites

Pests are everywhere – from the dark crevices of our homes to the colonies that they built by themselves on trees or inside forests. Then there are pests that can live inside our bodies. We know that it sounds like we’re instilling paranoia in you, but it’s the truth – these pests, referred to as “parasites”, can live and harm our bodies. Unfortunately for us, we can’t call for pest control to help us with parasitic problems. Here are some of the parasites that we have to watch out for.

 

Loa Loa

loa loa

Also known as the African Eye Worm, this parasite dwells in the blood just underneath the skin. It is most obvious when the loa loa reaches the white parts of the host’s eye. People infected by this parasite reported pain as the parasite travels the eye or the nose bridge. When the worm dies, the host’s body starts to swell (often in the forearms and wrists) caused by allergic reaction. Fortunately, this do not cause long-term damage in the host’s body.

Wuchereria bancrofti

Wuchereria bancrofti

Wuchereria bancrofti is a kind of roundworm that enters the body via carrier mosquitoes. In a year, the larvae mature in the host’s lymphatic system. If the Wuchereria bancrofti is left undetected and untreated, it causes elephantiasis – a disease that causes the skin to become thicker, especially around the lower limbs and even in the male genital area.

Tapeworm

tapeworm

This worm usually infects those that drink from contaminated water sources or eat undercooked meat of infected animals or food handled improperly by an infected person. When a person is infected by tapeworms, s/he will experience bowel problems, and if it turns severe, can cause blockage in the intestines. If left untreated, the worms can traverse to the liver, heart, eyes, and brain which is extremely fatal.

Giardia lamblia

giardia lamblia

The giardia lamblia is a type of protozoa that lives and reproduces in the small intestine which causes different sicknesses like giardiasis (also known as beaver fever). Symptoms of giardiasis include loss of appetite, diarrhea, watery stools, stomach cramps, upset stomach, bloating, excessive gas, and sulfurous burping. It enters the body through contaminated water.

Dranuculus medinensis

Dracunculus medinensis

This parasite, also known as the guinea worm, lays eggs in stagnant water where the larvae attach themselves to water fleas. They are only able to enter the human body when humans swim in affected water or drink water containing infected water fleas. If undetected, the worm can grow up to three feet long inside the body and will burrow itself out, which causes a burning sensation on the skin. If a person infected by the guinea worm tries to swim in cool water to ease the burning sensation, the worm will spew its eggs out through the wound, into the water. Although not life threatening, the pain and other complications it causes can give the host a hard time to move around.

 

Even though we cannot ask for the help of pest controllers in dealing with parasites, we can always rely on ourselves and our doctors. A good hygiene and clean environment are two of the best ways not only to keep pests out of our homes, but our bodies as well.