This so-called kiss bug seems to be in different stages of his life. It is often identified by a brown-black color, and the orange stripes on its side. ( Centers for Disease Control and Prevention )
The bugs and so-called kisses are already in the south of the states and they are also making their way north. What are some important things to know about kissing bugs?
Kisses bugs in the United States
Insects in triatomines, better known as "bug kisses," are called such because of the behavior of people biting in the face, especially near the mouth or eyes, and often when the person sleeps.
Bugs kisses are common in places with a warmer climate than in Latin America, Asia, Africa and Australia, but they have since been spotted in many countries in the US In particular, kissing bugs have been noticed in southern states since the 1800s but recently they have also been observed in northern countries as well.
Bugs kisses are usually more active at night, and they nourish the blood of mammals, birds and reptiles. They live in a variety of environments, but they can often be found close to the kinship creature they want to feed.
Locations where kisses and bugs are often found include forested areas, beneath balconies, under cement, between rocky structures, under bush piles, and in dog pens outside or houses.
Unfortunately, insects are carriers of Chagas disease, which is a condition that can cause fever, mild swelling, or in some cases an inflammation of the heart or brain muscles. If untreated, it can enter the chronic stage and even last for life.
The infection, however, does not come from the bite itself, but from the feces material of the insect, which gets smeared on the wound when the person bites scratches.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are about 300,000 people with Chagas disease in the United States, but the number may rise. Most cases are of people who have received the infection after a residence or traveling to South or Central America. As such, the agency has since established education courses on Chagas disease for doctors and nurses.
There is no need to panic about Chagas disease
Despite the proliferation of bugs and kisses in the country, experts still say that there is no need to panic about Chagas disease because it is still considered rare in the United States. This, they say, is due to the ineffectiveness of bugs in the transmission of the parasite, their uncommon contact with humans, and their inability to permanently settle in homes.
However, it is still wise to be wary of bugs, as conditions may change to be more convenient to kiss bugs as a result of climate change.
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