Not all bugs that bite you are as easily recognizable as bed bugs or fleas. Some biting bugs are so tiny that even bed bugs, fleas, and ticks are more prominent than them.
These bugs are known as microscopic bugs.
In this guide, you’ll find a mega list of 6 tiny and almost invisible microscopic bugs that bite.
Plus, you’ll also find out the solution for the invisible biting bugs.
Microscopic Bugs That Bite – An Introduction
Do you wake up with bug bites? Or do you feel something crawling on your back and neck while you’re on your bed?
You wonder, “what’s biting me but I can’t see?”
You think it’s bed bugs, fleas, ants, and mosquitoes. So you check every inch of your home.
But you find nothing. There’s no sign of bugs.
In the pest control world, these types of invisible bugs are known as microscopic bugs. And yes, you’re right. They bite too.
These microscopic bugs, which are known as arthropod pests that bite, can be dangerous too.
They drill themselves into your skin to live and breed. It leads not only to itchy and painful bite marks but also to a severe skin infection.
This condition of being parasitized by biting microscopic bugs is known as parasitosis.
Most microscopic bugs that bite infest human skin and clothing. But some don’t.
You’ll find out later in the guide how to protect yourself from microscopic bugs that bite.
For now, let’s find out what these microscopic bugs are.
The bugs are differentiated based on their color. Unfortunately, these bugs are almost invisible, so you might need a microscope or magnifying glass to view them.
Microscopic White Bugs That Bite
There are two microscopic white bugs that bite –
- Scabies Mites.
- Body Lice.
Let’s have a look at each of them.
Sarcoptes Scabiei, or scabies mites, are whitish-brown and only half a millimeter long. These mites cause an infection in humans which is known as scabies.
But that’s an infestation rather than an infection.
It’s because scabies mites burrow in the outer layer of your skin and they breed and lay eggs underneath, just like how termites infest wood.
Before burrowing, these microscopic bugs bite on your skin. But they’re so tiny that they’re invisible to the naked eye.
That’s why you don’t see any sign of bugs even if you look at the bitten area at the very moment when they bite you.
The symptoms of scabies mites’ presence inside your skin take a long time, four to six weeks, to show up.
The symptoms are intense itching and pimples like rashes.
By looking at the symptoms, you might misinterpret them as symptoms of mosquito bites or acne.
But the most compelling evidence of scabies mites’ presence inside your skin is relentless itching.
And you’ll also see track-like burrows underneath your skin, which lead to rashes.
This condition of constant itching and presence of adult scabies mites and their eggs underneath your skin is known as scabies.
Once inside your skin, female scabies mites lay up to 10 to 25 eggs. If left untreated, newborn scabies will spread underneath your skin and multiply.
The most common body parts where scabies mites attack are webbing between your fingers, on your wrists, elbows, and knee folds, near the waistline, at the navel, genitals, neck, face, and palms.
At a time, there can be 10 to 15 mites scabies mites inside your skin.
To confirm scabies mites, doctors scrape the skin from the infected person and observe it under the microscope. If scabies mites have infested the person, then doctors can easily spot adult scabies, their eggs, and fecal matters from the scraped skin.
But things can get worse.
The more sinister form of scabies is crust scabies which are also known as Norwegian scabies.
In this condition, tens of thousands of scabies burrow inside the human skin. The eggs and overpopulation of scabies mites inside the skin make the skin appear as a crust.
Crust scabies is a very critical scabies infestation, and it’s highly contagious that needs immediate medical intervention to prevent an outbreak.
Scabies mites spread from skin to skin when a healthy person comes in contact with an infected person.
For example, sexual contact with a person with scabies, sharing personal items like clothes, towels, and bedsheets is why scabies mites spread from one person to another.
Scabies mites cannot fly or jump. They can only crawl.
Scabies mites have eight legs, and they use their mouth to dig a tunnel on your skin.
Crowded places, child and daycare centers, hospitals, and institutional care centers are prone to have scabies mites. In addition, given the weak immune system of the elderly, scabies mites can wreak havoc on them.
But, children, because of their soft skin, are also an easy target for scabies mites.
Pets can also have scabies. But those mites, known as mange, that cause scabies in pets are ineffective on humans. Neither can they burrow in the human skin, nor can they survive on humans.
If you’ve been observing scabies symptoms like constant itching and rashes, go to the doctor asap. Repeatedly itching on the infested portion creates open sores that lead to severe and dangerous bacterial skin infections known as impetigo.
Another microscopic mite is the hair follicle mite. These mites live in the hair follicles, and they’re harmless.
The worst that hair follicle mite can inflict on you is acne.
There’s one reason for this microscopic bug to exist, and that’s unhygienic living conditions.
Body lice infest and lay eggs on the seams of dirty clothes. Like bed bugs, body lice need to feed on human blood to survive.
But the best part is body lice are not associated with everyday living conditions.
You’ll find these microscopic biting bugs in utterly dirty places with crowded living conditions. As per CDC, “In the US, you’ll find body lice infestations in homeless people who do not have access to clean living conditions, daily bathing, and clean clothes.”
Symptoms of body lice are intense itching and rash.
Plus, repeated biting by body lice on the skin causes the skin to thicken and discolor. This condition is known as vagabond disease.
Body lice infestation is unlikely to be on a hygienic person who bathes daily, has access to clean clothes, and has a clean living place.
An adult body louse is whitish-grey, has 6 legs, and only grows up to 4 mm in size. It only crawls on the human skin when it needs its blood meal to survive.
Post feeding, it moves back to the cloth where it hides.
The point to note is that the lice found on the head and scalp are head lice. Head lice are different from body lice.
Unhygienic living conditions caused by war, natural or artificial disasters, and civil unrest creates an ideal situation for the body lice to spread. Under these unsanitary conditions, body lice also cause diseases, such as typhus and trench fever.
Body lice also spread through direct physical contact with people who have them or using personal items like the infected person’s clothing.
But body lice infestations in the US are limited to homeless people who don’t have access to basic hygiene like regular bathing, clean clothes, and clean living conditions.
Microscopic Red Bugs That Bite
Chiggers are tiny parasitic microscopic red bugs that bite humans, birds, and mammals. They’re the larvae of mites belonging to the Trombiculidae family.
Chiggers are also known as berry bugs, harvest mites, red bugs, and scrub-itch mites.
Measuring only 1/150 inches in length, you’d need at least a robust magnifying glass, if not a microscope, to see the chiggers.
When chiggers are born, they’re either red or orange. On humans, they feed on the human skin.
After feeding, chiggers turn yellow or yellowish.
Chiggers’ body shape is oval, and it has six legs that make them effective crawlers.
Chiggers don’t burrow themselves under your skin. Nor do they suck your blood.
When chiggers bite your skin, it injects its saliva into your skin. The saliva breaks down the skin making your skin edible for them.
The bitten area of your skin will develop red welts with a white spot in the middle of the lump. You’ll face severe itching within hours of chiggers’ bite. The itching gets worse if you don’t treat it, and it can last for weeks.
Do not repeatedly scratch the welts as it’ll lead to infection. Instead, use any itch-relieving lotion or balm on the itchy area and visit a doctor.
Chiggers are outdoor bugs and live in damp and shaded places in your yard or garden. During the spring and summer months, it’s pretty common to find chiggers in shrubs, bushes, potted plants, and grass lawns.
Chiggers latch onto your skin when you walk in these places. Once they’re onto you, they move to areas where clothing fits tightly onto your skin or where the skin is delicate and loose.
So, chiggers bite you on places around the waistline, genitals, ankles, in the folds of elbows and knees.
Are Chiggers And Clover Mites The Same?
Given the similarity in the looks of chiggers and clover mites, many people think they’re the same.
There’s a lot of difference between the two. The only significant difference is that clover mites don’t bite humans.
But clover mites can cause allergic reactions, and they’re not at all suitable for asthma patients.
Microscopic Yellow Bugs That Bite
Thrips are the microscopic yellow bugs that bite humans.
Thrips’ size from 0.5 mm to 5 mm is yellowish-orange, and they’re garden pests.
Thrips feed only on plant matter, and they accidentally bite humans.
When thrips land on you, they probe with their mouth, which causes them to bite, to find out if you’re edible or not.
As thrips only eat plant matter, they get off your body once they realize that you’re not its food.
Thrips don’t inject anything inside you when they bite. You can get bite marks that are similar to rashes and lumps.
Microscopic Black Bugs That Bite
Pirate bugs and insidious flower bugs are two tiny black bugs that bite.
There’s nothing microscopic about them. It means although both pirate bugs and insidious flower bugs are tiny, they’re visible to the naked eye.
But given their smaller size, that makes them quite hard to detect.
Pirate bugs are outdoor bugs, and they’re most likely to bite when you’re engaged in any outdoor activity.
They fly in swarms, so many people confuse them with mosquitoes. But they’re so tiny that they look like black dots, if you can see them.
Pirate bugs are active during the summer months, and outdoors, you’ll find them near moist and damp areas.
Pirate bugs bite repeatedly. But they don’t inject anything inside you, nor do they carry any diseases.
They’re looking for a new place to hide and sources of food, and when they land on you, they think that you may be that.
Pirate bugs have a sharp beak-like mouth that they insert into your skin to probe on what they’ve landed on. Their bites are pretty painful, and you’ll get welts and red rashes on the bitten area.
Insidious Flower Bugs
Insidious flower bugs, twice as big as the period at the end of this sentence, is also an outdoor bug that bites humans.
Why they bite humans is still unknown. But the best part is that, like pirate bugs, insidious flower bugs don’t inject anything, nor do they transmit any diseases.
When insidious flower bugs bite you, the only thing they leave behind is bite marks. These bite marks are red welts and rashes that are very similar to mosquito bite marks.
Studies have shown that they tend to bite people when they’re sweating. And they also have a habit of entering your home through open doors and windows.
Insidious flower bugs are active during late afternoons, starting from the summer to autumn.
Solution For Invisible Biting Bugs
There are many ways that you can use to get rid of these microscopic bugs that bite.
From using insecticide sprays to natural remedies like using essential oils and diatomaceous earth, there are many solutions for invisible biting bugs.
But the best solution for invisible biting bugs is cleanliness and moisture control both indoors and outdoors of your home.
As most of these microscopic bugs are outdoor bugs and live in moist places, ensure that your yard or garden doesn’t have any over-damping problem.
If there are any water leakages in your home and garden, fix them. Also, get rid of any decaying organic waste in your yard that can harbor these tiny biting bugs.
Maintaining good hygiene, washing your clothes regularly, and regular bathing get rid of these microscopic bugs in your clothes and skin.
If these microscopic bugs bite you, then it’d be best that you visit a physician rather than using anything over-the-counter medicine.
It’s because you might be allergic to some or all of these biting bugs, which might aggravate the problem if you don’t take expert advice.
Microscopic bugs that bite are commonly associated with unhygienic living conditions. Some of these tiny bugs are outdoor bugs, and they can only bite you when you’re outdoors.
In this guide, you’ve found out what these microscopic bugs are that can bite you. These bugs are classified in terms of their color to make them easy for you to understand.
Some bugs in the post are not as microscopic as scabies mites. But they’re tiny and can be visible without using a magnifying glass or a microscope.
We’re Mark and Jim. We were serial pest killers for almost all of our lives. Through this blog we spread pest murdering tips to people like you who want to keep their homes pest free.