It’s not uncommon for people to find mysterious bug bites on their body. Most of the time, mystery bug bites are sustained while outdoors, but there exists a number of common arthropod species that bite people within the comfort of their own homes. Bed bugs are the most well known biting arthropod pests that solely inhabit indoor locations, but waking up in the morning with fresh bug bites is common, and bed bugs are not always the culprits in these situations. Undiagnosed bug bites that occur indoors can be caused by arthropod pests that infest human skin and clothing, but these types of pests are few in number. Undiagnosed bug bites that occur indoors are most likely inflicted by arthropod pests that occasionally invade homes. These types of arthropods include spiders, mosquitoes, and animal mites, like bird and rodent mites.

There are not many parasitic arthropods that infest human skin within indoor locations in the United States, but several species of lice and mites inflict bites on humans within their homes. Head lice, pubic lice and body lice are three types of arthropod pests that feed on human blood. Head dwell solely within human hair and body lice live in clothing, but they are rare in the US. Scabies mites may inflict bites to humans within indoor locations in rare circumstances, and hair follicle mites maintain a constant presence on the human body and are not harmful. Bird and rodent mites, on the other hand, are often brought into homes by invading wildlife, and bird mites sometimes infiltrate homes where nests are abundant on window sills. Thrips are arthropod pests that feed on outdoor plants, but they can land on human skin before being transported indoors where they may continue to inflict bites. However, thrips are easily washed off of human skin in showers and while washing hands. Several species of kissing bugs are known for invading homes where they inflict bites to people’s faces, and while these pests are normally associated with homes in the south, multiple species invade homes in the northeast as well. Fleas are often the culprits behind undiagnosed indoor bug bites, and they travel indoors from their natural grassy habitat by hitching rides on pets. Although identifying the indoor arthropod pest responsible for strange bites can be difficult, doing so is generally necessary in order to eradicate the pests from homes.

Have you ever sustained strange bug bites within your home?