What is a mosquito bite allergy?
Mosquito bites cause reactions in almost everyone. You may experience itching, redness, and swelling after a mosquito bite.
If you are allergic to mosquito bites, you may have a condition called Skeeter Syndrome. This kind of allergy will have more severe symptoms that may require medical attention.
When a mosquito bites you, they pierce your skin with their needle-like mouth to suck your blood. Once they start to feed on your blood, they inject their saliva into your skin which causes the reaction to the bite.
Some mosquitoes can be infected by viruses like West Nile and dengue. They can also be infected by parasites like malaria. If you are bitten by an infected mosquito, you may have symptoms that are different from those commonly experienced after regular bites and allergic reactions to mosquito bites. But not everyone who is bit by an infected mosquito gets sick.
Signs and symptoms of mosquito bite allergy
Mosquitoes can be difficult to avoid but their bites are easy to identify. Here are the symptoms to watch out for if you are allergic to mosquito bites:
In severe cases of an allergic reaction to mosquito bites, you may experience anaphylaxis. This is identified by throat swelling, causing difficulty breathing, hives, feeling faint, wheezing. You will need to seek immediate medical attention if you have anaphylaxis.
There is typically a small amount of swelling around the bite. If you are having an allergic reaction, the swelling could take over an entire body part that you were stung on. In cases like this, you should not wait to seek medical attention.
A low-grade fever is common with allergic reactions. This is your body’s way of fighting off an infection.
Swollen lymph nodes
If you are allergic to mosquito bites, your lymphatic system may become inflamed. This will cause your lymph nodes to swell.
You may feel localized pain and tenderness in the area.
Causes of mosquito bite reactions
Mosquito bites can cause different types of reactions, which can range from mild to severe. There are different causes for how your body reacts to a mosquito bite. These include:
You might not know you have a mosquito allergy until you’ve had a severe reaction. If you are allergic to mosquito bites your swelling will be severe where you were bitten. You will also experience other symptoms that might require medical attention if you have not been diagnosed with a mosquito allergy.
Hypersensitivity to mosquito bites (HMB)
This is a rare condition where your body may develop large blisters or skin necrosis. The severe symptoms of this condition may go away after an episode, but it could return in more severe forms. High fever and a general feeling of fatigue or unwellness are associated with HMB.
Diagnosing mosquito bite allergy
If you have a severe allergic reaction to a mosquito bite, you will need immediate treatment from your doctor.
Discussing your symptoms with your doctor will help them diagnose a mosquito bite allergy. Your doctor may also order a skin test or blood test, which can be done by an allergy specialist. Test results are interpreted together with your current symptoms and medical history.
Treatments mosquito bite allergy
Before doing anything else, clean the area with soap and water. You can put an ice pack on the bite to reduce swelling and itching.
You can also treat mosquito bite allergies at home using hydrocortisone cream on the affected area, but if this doesn’t work try oral antihistamines or topical anti-itch cream.
However, a severe reaction to a mosquito bite may cause anaphylaxis. If you are experiencing this you may need an epinephrine auto-injector. It may be best to keep one on you if you’ve been diagnosed with an allergy. It can be difficult to avoid mosquito bites.
Depending on the severity of your allergic reaction, your doctor may prescribe venom immunotherapy. This type of therapy may help cure your mosquito allergy.
- Blind People Are Better at Sensing Their Heartbeats
- AHA News: Missouri Man Turns Heart Disease Diagnosis Into Public Service Message
- Scientists Get Closer to Understanding 'Hidden' HIV
- New Drug Combo Buys More Time for Advanced Endometrial Cancer Patients
- Too Much Time Online Might Raise Kids' Odds for Mental Health Woes: Study
- More Health News »
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology: “Immunotherapy for mosquito allergy.”
American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: “Allergy Testing.”
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: “Mosquito bite symptoms and treatments.”
Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: “Skeeter syndrome.”
Seda, J. and Horrall, S. StatPearls, StatPearls Publishing, 2020.
Top Do You Know If You Are Allergic to Mosquito Bites Related Articles
Mosquito RepellentsMosquito bites are itchy, annoying, and can even make you sick. Find out what works (and what doesn't) to protect you from these blood-sucking bugs.
What Is Allergic Cascade?The allergic cascade refers to allergic reactions that happen in the body in response to allergens. A variety of immune cells and chemical messengers participate in the allergic cascade. Symptoms of the allergic cascade range from mild swelling and itching to full-blown anaphylactic shock. Allergen avoidance and medications are used to prevent or treat allergies.
Allergy (Allergies)An allergy refers to a misguided reaction by our immune system in response to bodily contact with certain foreign substances. When these allergens come in contact with the body, it causes the immune system to develop an allergic reaction in people who are allergic to it. It is estimated that 50 million North Americans are affected by allergic conditions. The parts of the body that are prone to react to allergies include the eyes, nose, lungs, skin, and stomach. Common allergic disorders include hay fever, asthma, allergic eyes, allergic eczema, hives, and allergic shock.
Can You Use Toothpaste to Relieve Mosquito Bites?While some people only react mildly to mosquito bites, others show severe reactions with intense swelling, soreness, or redness in the affected area. Toothpaste is the most accessible home remedy for mosquito bites.
What Is Chikungunya Virus?Chikungunya virus is an infection spread (transmitted) through a bite from an infected mosquito. Common symptoms of Chikungunya virus infection include joint pain, headache, rash, and fever. There is no drug or vaccine available to treat or prevent Chikungunya virus infections. Some medicines and home remedies may help relieve symptoms of Chikungunya virus infection.
How To Tell the Difference Between a Spider Bite and a Mosquito BiteLearn how tell the difference between a spider bite and a mosquito bite and how to care for each.
Do Mosquito Magnets Work?Mosquitos are known for transmitting many types of diseases to humans. Mosquito magnets worked in trapping up to 60+ a night, including mosquitoes that carried malaria.
Home Remedies for Mosquito BitesMosquito bites appear as red, itchy rashes, which resolves in a few days. A few mosquitoes act as a vector to spread diseases like Malaria, West Nile virus, Yellow fever, Dengue, Chikungunya, Encephalitis (brain infection), and Zika virus.
How Do You Stop Mosquito Bites From Itching?Mosquito bites can be irritating. Learn what causes the itch and how to stop it.
Insect Sting AllergiesThe majority of stinging insects in the United States are from bees, yellow jackets, hornets, wasps, and fire ants. Severity of reactions to stings varies greatly. Avoidance and prompt treatment are essential. In selected cases, allergy injection therapy is highly effective.
Symjepi (epinephrine)Symjepi (epinephrine) is a disposable, prefilled syringe used to treat life-threatening, allergic emergencies including anaphylaxis in people who are at risk for or have a history of serious allergic emergencies. Common side effects of Symjepi include fast, irregular or “pounding” heartbeat; sweating, headache, weakness, shakiness, paleness, feelings of over excitement, nervousness or anxiety, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, and breathing problems.
Which Is the Most Effective Mosquito Repellent?The most effective mosquito repellent is N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide (DEET), also called diethyltoluamide.