Can No-See-Ums Live in My Hair

Can No-See-Ums Live in My Hair?

So, on whether can no-see-ums live in my hair; NO, the no-see-ums or biting midges won’t live in hair but may hide temporarily or get tangled shortly. 

The bugs will be attracted by the CO2 released by animals and humans when exhaling. The biting midges will clearly lay their eggs and occupy moist soil. 

No See Ums mainly in areas with high humidity and will populate a given location rapidly. They will live mainly around bogs, marshes, streams, and ponds. 

  • For starters; no see ums are also known, by different people and regions, as punky, punkie, citrus, sand gnats, sandflea, or sandfly. 

Details: Can No-See-Ums Live in My Hair?

When I was in Hawaii on vacation, no-see-ums tangled into my daughter’s hair. We had to change her hairstyle into a gelled and short one as advised that it’s best to avoid these bugs. 

Therefore, walking through or sleeping in some wooded areas may allow the no-see-ums to jump onto your hair as their pets will be hiding in saturated or decomposing logs, algae, and mosses. 

  • The pests will be attracted to or by carbon dioxide or light and thus lighting torches through the wood may make you vulnerable to gnats within your clothes and hair. 
  • No see ums may be described as some tiny “biting midges” looking like flies as they’ll bite humans to leave an itchy feeling. 

Despite that these bugs (insects) aren’t invisible, they are small almost equal to the size of lint or some grain of dirt.

  • The insects go through the eggs, next larvae, then pupae, and finally adult stages – requiring about 2 to 6 weeks to attain full maturity. 

Further, ensure to protect your pets including from the no see ums by spraying them with some eucalyptus or tea tree oil, especially on their flea collar

What are the No See Ums Like on My Hair?

On how to recognize these no see ums on my hair; well, these bugs are tiny measuring about 1 to 3 mm in their length. 

On color, these bugs look grayish to reddish especially when they’ve fed on blood. Therefore, if your hair is white or gray, you might find it challenging to see the pets. 

  • Most of the no see um species will have dark-patterns wings making them look grayish. 

The mouthparts of these pests have some sheath and 4 cutting blades that’ll help them dig into your skin or scalp – which could inflict massive pain. 

  • So, ultimately, you may see some small red “spots” on your skin or scalp and hair when the pest has sucked blood from your body. 

Will No See Ums need human Blood to Reproduce?

On the feeding and reproduction habits of the biting midgets, the pest mainly feeds on nectar and plant sap. 

  • However, the female no see ums require proteins to achieve effective eggs production and will thus they’ll suck blood from vertebrates and small insects. 

But the male no see ums won’t be attracted to those vertebrates mainly so since their mouthparts arent adapted for biting either humans or other animals.

However, the female biting midges such as the Culicoides will also suck blood from amphibians, reptiles, birds, and also mammals. They’re being attracted to the co2 released by the animals exhaling.

  • Further, some no see ums species like the Ceratopogonidae are considered predators and will thus capture and kill insect larvae, small worms, and protozoa.

Other no see um species will feed on organic matter, algae, fungi, and bacteria. The Leptoconops kertszi may disperse and bite humans up to 10 miles from the place that larvae developed.

How to Treat Bites from No See Ums on the Head and Skin?

So, if you’ve noticed some no see ums on your hair, head, or skin, it’s important to know how to deal with bug bites. 

  • As noted above, the male no see ums mainly feed on plant matter and nectar while the females will need come proteins to effectively lay eggs. 

The skin bites will leave some sizable welt on the human scalp or skin – these welts may measure around 1 inch. 

Treatment of these bites from no see ums will require that you wash the welt or wounds using some warm water & soap. 

  • The treatment will help reduce the pain and irritation while also averting further skin infection on your skin or head. 

However, if the irritation continues further after you’ve washed effectively, I recommend you apply some analgesic cream or cortisone. Further, talk to an expert doctor to handle the bites. 

How to Control these No See Ums?

Controlling no see ums and their larvae too is considered a challenging task but the C. sonorensis species may prove easier to take out.

You can control the development of no see ums larvae by changing the bank form of those waste-water ponds, reducing leakage of troughs, and periodically changing the level of water.

  • Using insecticides to control no see ums may give you temporary success  – such as when you use the chemicals in the evenings, especially in the Gulf Coast or Atlantic Coast.

I would, however, recommend installing door and window screens that have small mesh sizes to control the no see ums in your spaces and hence prevent them from tangling in your hair.

In addition, if you’ll be in the woods or camping, I approve the use of tents that are fitted with durable midge screens – but these must also have small-sized mesh screens.

  • But as an alternative, you may use clothes prayed with permethrin, DEET (diethytoluamide) to achieve temporary protection from the no see ums.

Related: Getting Rid of Sand Fleas


No see ums won’t bite through your clothing or fabric like socks and thus having such covers on your hair or skin will afford extra protection from these pests.

Further, no see ums will not live in your hair but they hide there temporarily especially when you walk through some damp or forested area. 

Using citronella may help you repel those no see ums from your hair and skin – but using DIY sprays such as eucalyptus or tea tree oil will be more effective – plus analgesic cream or cortisone.

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