All Creatures Great and Small

Follicle mites

Let’s talk about follicle mites.  What are they?  They are very small mites that live on most humans.  They live in the hair follicles and that includes the hair follicles of your eyelashes.  They are normally found on and around your face but can live in hair follicles on other parts of your body.  In most cases, they cause no harm, and nobody is aware of their presence.  Occasionally they can occur in high numbers and cause some problems, including hair loss, itching and inflammation.  This is caused Demodicosis.  Some people have them and are not aware of the problem they can cause, and they call an exterminator to spray their house for whatever is biting them.   This isn’t what should be done.  There is nothing an exterminator can do to control follicle mites. If you have any issues that could be caused by follicle mites, contact your doctor, and let them make recommendations.  There are different species of follicle mites that infest other animals as well.  They can cause mange in some animals.

When I taught an entomology class in the Biology Dept of UNM about 20 years ago, I told the students about follicle mites.  I pulled out a couple of eyebrow hairs from my face and I found on follicle mite.  I showed it to all the students with a magnifying glass and most of them started pulling out their hairs to look for them and most of them found follicle mites.  I told them their body is nothing more that a home for the mites and they rarely cause problems, but they should be aware of them if problems develop.  I have had them my whole life and they never bothered me.  Most of the students left class realizing that their bodies are part of Mother Nature.

Google follicle mites and Demodicosis for more information.  If you have any questions regarding these mites or any other potential pest, you can email me at askthebugman2013@gmail.com.

About askthebugman

I have been in the pest management industry for over 40 years. In that time I have used almost every pesticide available to control so-called “pests”. With this experience, I have learned over the years that the pesticides we use are far more dangerous than the pests we are trying to control. As a result, it has become a passion for me to improve the quality of life for humans and the planet, by assisting people to not only become more educated and aware of their environment – but also by learning to manage their home and business with a sustainable and healthier approach to tending to unwanted infestations of bugs. Please enjoy my blog posts, check out my publications, utilize my services, or simply stay in touch if you have a bug question…

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