The truth is fleas can become a problem whether you have pets or not. Understanding a little about fleas can go a long way towards preventing them and getting rid of them.
Why Are Fleas a Danger to Humans?
Fleas are small, wingless insects. They are external parasites, meaning they live and feed outside of the body. Over 3,000 species of flea exist, and you can often find them broken down into categories and subcategories. Some examples of flea types include:
- Cat fleas
- Dog fleas
- Human fleas
Don't let the names fool you. Each type of flea isn't limited to one type of host. For example, the cat flea is actually the most likely type to bite a human.
Mostly, fleabites are scratchy irritations. For some people, those bites can lead to more issues, such as:
- Skin Infections
- Allergic reactions
You can typically treat fleabites with over the counter hydrocortisone creams and antihistamines. Nevertheless, fleas, much like mosquitoes, can also carry tapeworms or deadly diseases like typhus. For this reason, it may be wise to discuss your flea bite with a medical professional.
How Can Fleas Get Inside Your Home?
You're probably familiar with the "hitchhiker" nature of fleas. They hop from one host to another. However, many people assume you need to have pets for a flea to make the transfer. This isn’t true. You can still end up with fleas even if you don’t have a pet.
Fleas hop from host to host. They can hop from a rodent to a neighbor's dog, and then onto you. You or someone in your household may attract certain types of fleas just by standing near an animal with fleas.
Fleas aren't too picky. Many fleas will jump onto anything they can feed on until the host they actually want comes along. If you or anyone in your household enjoys spending time with animals, then you can pick up a flea and bring it home.
From Your Home
You may already have fleas in your home. Any moist, humid, out-of-the-way area of your home can host a whole nest of young fleas.
Adult fleas represent the smallest percentage of the fleas out there. Fleas make it to adulthood only by finding a host. Most fleas exist as eggs, larvae, and pupa. These new fleas only have a certain amount of time to find a host.
Young fleas can't move around as much as the adult fleas, so they have to sit and wait for someone to come along and give them a ride.
Flea nests can exist outside your home as well. If you have areas around your home that stay perpetually moist and shaded, then you might also have a flea nest there. All it takes is for someone to step into that area to get out the sun for a moment, and a flea can hop on them.
What Can You Do About Fleas and Flea Infestations?
You can do a number of things to keep fleas off you and your family:
- Keep your home clean
- Use repellent when dealing with animals
- Use an insecticide in your home
If you intend to use an insecticide, then take extra care and follow all instructions without fail. If you want to rid your home or yard of fleas in the most efficient and safest way, then you need a professional pest control service.
Environmental Services Pest Control, LLC has licensed and certified pest removal technicians. If you suspect you have fleas or any other pests in your home, then contact us immediately.