Are insect and spider bite reactions a summertime hazard in Los Angeles?

Yes, there are many more cases of severe reactions with insects and spider bites during the summer. Insect bite reactions are especially common in Los Angeles because of our varied topography: hills, mountains, reservoirs, and beach cities.  LA insects can be found almost anyplace within the city. Dermatologists in Los Angeles recommend the use of an insect repellent whenever possible when enjoying the LA outdoors.

Mosquito bites can usually be treated with over-the-counter 1% hydrocortisone cream and over-the-counter antihistamines; however, if the bites become severely red and itchy, then a visit to a dermatologist would be appropriate.

Spider bites present more of a problem. If you get a bite that becomes very red, hot, and swollen, it is best to seek medical attention from a competent dermatologist. Such bites may require oral or injectable medications to prevent severe infection and allergic reactions. If a severe bite goes untreated, the infection can become systemic and spread throughout the entire body.

Bees and wasps can also present a problem in the summertime. For a quick treatment if the stings are not too severe, a small amount of household ammonia can be applied to the area in an attempt to neutralize the reaction. If you have an aloe vera plant at home, you can snip off the end of one of the leaves and put a small amount of the aloe vera juice on the area and rub it in.  In addition, the over-the-counter treatments mentioned above are also effective for these reactions.

Stings from bees and wasps can also produce very severe allergic reactions that can result in death if not properly treated. If you experience any generalized rash (hives), especially associated with trouble breathing, then you should seek out your nearest emergency room for immediate treatment.

– Dr. Bussell

Beverly Hills Dermatology Consultants

433 N. Camden Drive, Suite 805   Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310-550-7661

One thought on “Are insect and spider bite reactions a summertime hazard in Los Angeles?

  1. Several spiders can protect your home from pesky invaders. Cellar spiders-the web-spinning species most common in homes-have been known to prey on black widow spiders. Some, like the spiny orb weaver and house spiders, can hunt crickets and small flying insects. Wolf spiders can help rid lawns and gardens of common pests. Even the brown recluse-the most dangerous spider to humans-can assist by eating cockroaches, silverfish and other soft-bodied insects.-

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