Expectations and Reality: A complete guide to Bed bug bites vs flea bites

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bed bug bites vs flea bites

Bed bug bites vs flea bites; suck the blood of their hosts. They have similarities as well as apparent differences. Let us discuss all of them.

They feed and reproduce on the blood of humans and animals. Both of them are active at night and hide in the day. Once they get inside your home, it’s tough to cope with them. Bed bug bites vs flea bites is a huge debate in itself. They can see with naked eyes, but they are small enough to hide in clothes, any mattress, bags while coming back from somewhere else, any furniture, pets, or any other thing and come inside of your house. As they both need human or animal blood to feed and reproduce, so they are in need to bite you at any time and any place. Once they bite you, it’s hard to differentiate with the naked eye between bed bug bites vs flea bites. They have specific significant differences.

Major differences between bed bug bites vs flea bites

We can differentiate bed bug bites vs flea bites on the basis of:

  • Their appearance
  • Their respected hosts
  • Their movement
  • Hiding areas
  • Biting spots

Let’s discuss them one by one.


They are reddish-brown and are visible to naked eyes. Bed bugs are small and oval; on the other hand, fleas are long, and they have narrow and flat body shapes.

Respected hosts

They both consume blood, but bed bugs prefer the blood of humans if they are nearby, while fleas prefer the blood of animals and only prefer humans when animals are not nearby.


Fleas have long legs and can jump, while bed bugs cannot jump, nor can they fly, they only crawl.

Hiding areas

Bed bugs mostly hide in mattresses, furniture, bags, etc. While fleas hide in animal’s fur most of the time.

Biting spots

When a beg bug bites you, it appears dark red color spots. On the other hand, if a flea bites you, it mostly appears in the form of three places together.

How insect bites affect us?

Starting from the basic, an insect is a small creature with legs and sometimes wings too. Insects are the most abundant species on the planet earth. Insect bites are wounds, a result of injecting some fluid into the body of the host by the insect. An insect may bite us for feeding themselves, or they bite us in defense if they feel any alarming situation by our side. Commonly stings, fleas, bedbugs, mosquitoes, ticks, etc. bite us.

Reactions to insect bites may vary depending on the type of insect, but commonly it will form a red bump or spot on the surface of insect bite, which is also very itchy. Its severity varies from insect to insect. Some insect bites are less poisonous compared to other ones. Less damaged ones will get better by themselves within some days. If you have got an allergic reaction from an insect bite, then you may get some rashes which keep on spreading on your body, nausea, cramps, itching or breathing difficulties, etc. In these cases, you have to see a doctor immediately to avoid any further reactions.

Insect bites are on different kinds. Tick bites are less painful, but a bump appears on the affected area. It usually will get a cure in some time by itself. Mosquito bites result in small clumps and itchiness, which will get a cure if it’s not malaria or dengue etc. Place a cold cloth to get relief from itching and swelling. In severe conditions, visit a doctor. The doctor may prescribe you painkillers or, in more severe cases, may prescribe you steroids. If a person scratches insect bites or breaks the skin, then there is a chance of bacterial infection, which only will get better by antibiotics.

Causes and complications of bed bugs bites

Bed bugs usually feed themselves at night and mostly on human blood. Bed bugs bites are irritating. Bed bugs have a flat body, which makes them fit anywhere they want to, such as in furniture, mattresses, clothes, etc. After coming to a place, they start spreading themselves rapidly. For example, if they are in your room, they will divide themselves into the whole room and gradually starts moving towards other places too. They get active at night, which makes them sometimes undetectable.

Bed bugs bites don’t let you feel pain at once, but after some time, you started feeling itchiness. This itchiness may sometime refer to as mosquito bites, but it is then clear that it is bed bugs bites. Several other signs may warn you about the presence of bed bugs bites in your room. They may include stains of blood on your sheet covers, rust color spots, fecal or eggshells, or an unpleasant odor. If you started using a used bed or room, which is also many years old, then there is a high risk of the presence of bed bugs in it.

Once you are confirmed about bed bugs bites, you need to clear the bed bugs from your area by proper vacuum and cleaning, wash all your bed covers and use some pest killer or insect killer sprays, etc.

How to cure bed bug bites?

Bed bug bites range from mild to severe. You must stop scratching at it can cause more irritation and sometimes infections. Apply certain anti-inch creams to soothe the itchiness and pain. However, if symptoms started getting worse like fever and swelling, you should see a doctor because it may be cellulitis, which is a bacterial infection. The doctor may prescribe you an antibiotic to cure your bed bug bites.

There are certain techniques, which reduces the risk of cellulitis in case of bed bug bites:

  • Don’t scratch your bed bug bites, because scratching may lead to entering of bacteria in your body.
  • Wash your bed bug bites with soap and water to keep the surface clean and bacteria-free.
  • Use an antibiotic ointment.
  • Cover your bed bug bites with a bandage.
  • Use a cold compress; it will reduce your urge of itching.
  • Trim your fingernails in case if you accidentally scratch, the bacteria will not affect your wound.

Bed bugs live in any place, even in your home. But they are more common in places where there are a number of people, like when you are in a hotel, hostel, hospitable, college, barrack, or in a business office. There is a lesser chance of animals getting infected by bed bugs, but if humans are not around, then animals also can get an effect from bed bugs. The bites on animals may get better after some days on their own, but sometimes they get worse. Go to the veterinarian if you see any infected bite. Shower your pet and clean them thoroughly. Clean your pet’s living area and accessories to avoid the chance of bedbugs to stay there.

Flea bites; Side effects and cure

Fleas are tiny bugs. They can have a light brown to a black color shade. Flea bites result in small bumps with a red hole in the center. It is very itchy. They always are in a group or clusters form. Stop yourself from itching, as itching may lead to severe infections. Use anti-itching creams or cold compress to reduce itching.

bed bug bites vs flea bites
Flea bites

Flea bites are commonly on your legs, ankles, waist, breasts, armpits, etc. Fleas commonly live on animals. They tend to bite humans less, but if they can’t find any animal, then they start living on humans as well. Fleas reproduce very quickly and can also move from one host to another by jumping as they have long legs. Flea bites in dogs look the same as in humans, a red bump with a dark red circle in the mid. But it is harder to find in animals because of their fur. You can guess this by noticing excessive itching in them. Running a flea comb on your pet may let you notice fleas in their fur. They typically live on an animal’s neck, belly, and tail.

Flea bites are sometimes confused with mosquito bites. If you have a mosquito bite, then the bump is larger. Flea bites will automatically reduce with the passage of time and eventually gone. But if you notice any infection in that area, see your doctor. A doctor may prescribe you certain medications. Use antibiotics if you have got some serious bacterial infections. Otherwise, the doctor will give you some pain reliever and anti-itching cream to get rid of itching and pain. It’s better to get rid of fleas from your pets and your home by vacuuming the home, washing the sheets, and bathing your pet with anti-flea shampoo.

In the end, this topic concludes that bed bug bites vs flea bites result in itching and irritation along with some other symptoms, which may lead to discomfort for your family and pets. It’s better to avoid them by taking precautions first, but once you get affected, than take proper treatment to get rid of them and from their effects completely.

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