Mosquitoes are attracted to a particular blood type, along with the air of sweat. If you get bit more than others, it’s because you are special. Those pesky insects can sniff you out and there’s not a whole lot you can do about it.
Female mosquitoes have special receptors, which detect carbon dioxide. Those of us who give off more CO2 than others are the ones who fall prey to the bloodsuckers. People who are overweight and/or hyperactive tend to give off higher levels of CO2. Also, if you just worked out, chances are you’re emitting lots of carbon dioxide too.
The mosquitoes, however, are also attracted to Type O blood. (If you’re Type O, you’re more likely to get bit than a person with Type A blood.) If you’re sweaty and have Type O, then you’ve doubled your chances of being a victim.
Other explanations for getting bit more are: 1) If you’re drinking beer (If you want ideas for other beverages that may even help you lose weight, click here.); 2) You’re wearing dark clothing; 3) You’re moving around a lot, which brings the insects’ attention to you. Scientists explain, however, that 85% of one’s susceptibility to getting bit by mosquitoes is his/her genetics. About one in 10 people are appealing to the insects.
Wearing lighter-colored long sleeves, long pants, a mosquito net over your head, and applying essential oils or a solution containing DEET are the best ways to avoid attracting mosquitoes.
If you get bit, it’s recommended to wash your bite with soap and water immediately. Dab either rubbing alcohol or witch hazel on the spot to kill germs, dry it out, and help relieve itching. Witch hazel is a plant that was used by Native Americans as an anti-itch and anti-inflammatory.
Calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream are common go-to itch-relievers. Applying crushed ice can also help curb inflammation. Some people rub deodorant on the spot claiming that the aluminum chloride stops the swelling.
More “natural” applications for post-bite relief are aloe and honey. Tea tree oil supposedly helps too. Another remedy is to steam a couple of basil sprigs and apply them to the bite as a natural antihistamine. If you’re in the United States, your chances of contracting the Zika virus from a mosquito bite are quite miniscule. Before traveling abroad, you can check the CDC website for areas where mosquitoes are carrying the virus.
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