Most of us know what it’s like to be out walking our dog at dusk and feel those pesky mosquitoes crawling on us, only to wake up the next morning with a dozen bites all over our legs.
While some people feel like mosquito magnets, others are extremely fortunate to get away with not getting bit.
But why do some people get bit more often than others? There are actually some surprising reasons behind it.
We all know that mosquitos bite us to suck our blood. They are basically like little flying vampires. But did you know that mosquitoes prefer certain blood types? If you are Type O, I have some bad news for you – mosquitoes are found to be twice as attracted to this blood type than people with Type A. Type B is in the middle.
Bacteria on Skin
It’s no surprise that our skin is covered in bacteria, since bacteria is just about everywhere. Of course this is another thing that mosquitoes are drawn to. Each person has different types and amounts of bacteria on their skin, which plays a role in drawing mosquitoes in.
Believe it or not, mosquitoes can sense carbon dioxide up to 160 feet away. So, the more we exhale, the more carbon dioxide we let out, and the more we attract them.
Aside from sensing carbon dioxide, mosquitoes can also smell the lactic acid, uric acid and ammonia that we emit in our sweat. So, the sweatier you are, the more attractive you will smell to mosquitoes. But even without sweating, some people just naturally emit more acids than others, so sometimes it isn’t even in our control.
Scientists believe that after drinking beer, the increased ethanol content in sweat attracts mosquitoes. In one study, researchers found that drastically more mosquitoes landed on subjects who drank a beer than before.
Since mosquitoes target victims using their eyes, what we wear can draw them in. Dark colors such as navy, black and red make you an easy target for these blood-suckers.
Researchers found that women in late pregnancy exhaled 21 percent greater volume of breath than women who aren’t pregnant. The more we exhale, the more carbon dioxide we let out, which, as I said earlier, attracts more mosquitoes. They also learned that pregnant women’s stomachs are a degree warmer, and mosquitoes love warm bodies.
We may not all be able to control some of these factors that attract mosquitoes, but there are ways to keep them away or reduce your chances of being bitten. Wear light-colored clothing that shows minimal skin, along with an insect repellent spray. Keep your lawn and gutters clean and remove areas of standing water, since these are an ideal breeding spot for mosquitoes.