I have no idea what’s biting me about 20 times a day, but it’s not mosquitos. This is what happens to me when I get a mosquito bite (and some are a lot bigger than this):
The things that bite me every day leave my legs looking like this:
I brought a lot of 50% DEET repellent with me from England and I was planning on wearing it 24/7 but after a few days I realised my skin really didn’t like it and it was making it go red and hot. If there’s a visible reaction then I’m pretty sure it’s not good for me (or maybe not good for anyone) so I’m definitely not going to use it every day for 8 months.
You don’t see many insects around in the daytime in Bocas (except around food), so I figured I’d be fine with nothing in the day, and I sleep under a mosquito net at night so the only problem is if I’m outside after dark because that’s when there are more insects around. I decided the other day I’d rather get a bite than have my whole legs hot and red from the DEET so I’ve just given up wearing it really.
I think some of these bites are from Solarte where I volunteer because it’s way more rural over there and you can see insects in the day there. The worst place for insects is the beach because there are loads of sand flies which cover you in bites.
Some shops here sell a natural repellent but I’ve heard it doesn’t work and makes your clothes really oily. I’ll probably buy one anyway and try because if it carries on like this my legs will be completely scarred by the time I go back to England. Some of them don’t leave marks but some of them do a bit, and if I’m getting 20 a day, even if only 2 leave a mark out of 20, that’s still going to be a lot of marks in 8 months.
I have 2 creams to put on to stop them itching. One is antihistamene (Mepyramine Maleate), actually made for bites, and the other one is Germolene Antiseptic Cream & Local Anaesthetic made for things like minor burns and blisters. I figured the “local anaesthetic” might stop me from feeling anything in the bites and therefore stop the itching. I still haven’t figured out which cream is best, and they both work a bit but not 100%.
If anyone has any suggestions please leave me a comment!