We know that bugs are gross and unsanitary but did you also know that they can be bad for our health. WebMD discusses some of the worst bugs and the potential harm they can do to our health:
- Ticks –Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and allergic reactions.
- Black Widow Spiders – Poisonous.
- Brown Recluse Spiders – Poisonous, can cause serious wounds, infection, and in some cases can be deadly.
- Head Lice – Itchiness can lead to infection, loss of hair.
- Fleas – Itchiness can lead to infection.
- Bee, Wasp, Hornet, Yellow Jacket – Painful sting, and can cause allergic reaction.
- Fire Ants – Painful sting, venomous, red bumps that burn and itch, and can cause allergic reaction.
- Chiggers – Itchy red welts.
- Scabies – Itchiness, sores.
- Bedbugs – Itchy, red bumps, can develop infection from scratching, and can cause allergic reaction.
- Puss Caterpillar – Poisonous, painful sting, rash, fever, vomiting, and muscle cramps.
- Scorpions – Poisonous, painful, and can be deadly.
- Deerflies – Infection, and Tularemia.
- Mosquitoes – West Nile virus, dengue fever, other diseases, and scratching can cause skin infection.
- Houseflies – Carries more than 1 million bacteria, intestinal infections by contaminating food.
- Cockroaches – Salmonella and other diseases, dead carcasses can trigger allergic reactions and asthma.
Tips to prevent feeling the sting of these health issues:
- Make sure your home is treated by a professional exterminator. A professional can diagnose current problems, and prevent new issues from coming into your home efficiently and effectively.
- Wear long clothing when outdoors.
- Wear DEET repellant when outdoors.
- Keep a clean, sanitary home and yard. This will prevent insects from seeing your home as a place for them to call home.
For more information on these insects and their health hazards, visit WebMD: Bad Bugs Slideshow: Identifying Bugs and Their Bites.
If you think you may have been bitten or stung by any of the insects above, please take note of your body’s reaction and seek medical assistance immediately.
Though having pests in your home may be a different story, books about bugs have always been favorite reads for children. Below is a list of fictional stories about bugs that your kids are sure to enjoy:
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
This picture book features the tale of a caterpillar’s metamorphosis into a butterfly accompanied by vivid colored pictures. Children will not only learn about caterpillars, but also about numbers, healthy eating and days of the week as they chronicle his journey from newborn to cocoon.
Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg
Ever wonder what ants are up to when they invade your home? Before you call the exterminator, let this picture book give you a glimpse into the mischievous adventures of two ants. Children will learn the importance of following directions and the consequences of their choices.
James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
This classic of children’s literature features a fun-filled cast of characters starting with a young orphan named James. With the help of a magic potion, James causes a peach tree to blossom an abnormally large fruit, which becomes home to an assortment of interesting insects. This perfect first chapter book will offer your children lessons of friendship, bravery and loyalty.
Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
This American classic comes from the author of another well-known tale, Stuart Little. Told from the perspective of a pig, this novel follows the life of barn house creatures, one of which is a spider named Charlotte. Charlotte offers Wilbur much wisdom in one of the most beautiful friendships ever written.
The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden
This story follows a cricket from Connecticut who boards the wrong train to Times Square in New York. There he meets many interesting characters, both human and animal, that teach him many lessons, including how to play classical music.
Every good party has a theme! And what better time to have a party than the summer? Summer is a great time for cookouts, family get-togethers, birthdays, or just because! And what goes together better than summer and bugs? So why not have a bug-themed party?
Bug theme decorations:
- Use green streamers that look like vines and shrubs
- Place jars with plastic bugs as table decorations
- Antennae headbands
- Magnifying glasses
It’s never a good idea to pair real bugs with food. But we can make our food look like insects, right! Try these bug themed treats that are sure to be pleasing on the eyes and the stomach.
Ants on a Log
Bug theme foods:
- Dirt Cake
- Gummy worms
- Fruit caterpillar kabobs – skewer green grapes, place 2 white dots on front of first grape using cream cheese, place mini chocolate chip in center of white dots for eyes
- Bug juice – mix any flavor of red juice and a blue juice…to make GREEN juice
- Ants on a log – You will need: Celery, cream cheese or peanut butter, raisins
- Slice celery horizontally and spread with either cream cheese or peanut butter.
- Place raisins on top
- Burrowing Worms – Cut 6-7 slits along one half of each hotdog (1/4″ apart and 1/2″ deep). Do the same on the opposite side. Cook hotdogs and serve on bun with hotdog condiments.
- Create your own critter mix – It’s trail mix with a spin. Give guests a bag and let them make their own mix with selections of nuts, seeds, cereals, crackers, pretzels, raisins, dried fruit, marshmallows, chocolate chips, etc.
- Watermelon Bug: Cut a rectangle out of the top of a watermelon. Scoop out the flesh and refill with fruit salad. Create a face on the melon using fruit (an orange wedge for the mouth, grape eyes). Use banana halves to make six legs and curl some pipe cleaners for antennae. Attach everything with toothpicks
- Pretzel butterflies: Attach two small pretzels, tip to tip. Place piece of caramel at tips and microwave for 10 second or until caramel is melted and pretzels are stuck together.
- Mosquito Bloody Marys – for the adults, of course.
Don’t let uninvited guests ruin your party. Call Northwest Exterminating to get rid of any mosquitoes or pests.