ugh, bug
July 1, 2015 1:42 PM   Subscribe

A very slightly raised roughly 1/4" circle redness/bruise with a teeny scab in the middle: what bit me?

This thing on my ankle showed up yesterday. Itched last night but hasn't at all today. I am pretty lucky in terms of bug bites - I don't get bit that often, and mosquito bites barely show. What bit me and do I need to worry about it?
posted by everybody had matching towels to Science & Nature (9 answers total)
That could honestly be anything. Everyone's skin reacts differently to every bug bite.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:47 PM on July 1, 2015 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Sure. But different types of bug bites have certain 'looks.' You can tell a bedbug bite from a mosquito bite. I asked this question in the hopes that a mefite could help narrow down what type of bug it was.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 2:02 PM on July 1, 2015

But different types of bug bites have certain 'looks.' You can tell a bedbug bite from a mosquito bite.

Not necessarily, or at least not in all/many cases. I've had a bed bug infestation and they looked exactly like mosquito bites on me. My dermatologist confirmed that insect bites present differently on different people, so photos of bites aren't a reliable way to know what bit you.

Your photo looks more like a zit to me than anything else, but since zits don't itch, I'm guessing mosquito or something similar. I often get little bites like that on/around my feet in the summer, especially if I step in grass.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 2:17 PM on July 1, 2015

You can tell a bedbug bite from a mosquito bite.

Nope, not really - many bites do look alike, and I've had mosquito bites in varying sizes and degrees of itchiness. If you get clusters or lines of multiple bites, or several bites in a day, it might be time to start worrying about bedbugs. A single isolated bite isn't worth worrying about unless it starts getting worse (spreading, feeling hot or painful, etc.).

I have a little bit of bedbug paranoia; my rule of thumb is that whenever I get a bug bite of unknown origin, I keep an eye out for new bites for the next two weeks. If I don't get any, odds are pretty good I don't have bedbugs.
posted by Metroid Baby at 2:26 PM on July 1, 2015 [1 favorite]

When I get bites that look like that, it's usually chiggers or sand gnats. Might be a spider, but usually spider bites are a constellation of bites like that , and not just one. YMMV of course.

Unlike you, however, I get eaten alive. I draw every biting bug from 3 counties around.

Anyway, other than secondary infections, I wouldn't have much concern. Don't scratch it too much.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 2:27 PM on July 1, 2015

That looks more like an infected hair follicle to me. Maybe when it was itchy, there was an ingrown hair and now it's popped out?
posted by peep at 2:29 PM on July 1, 2015 [6 favorites]

I'm going with not a bite - ingrown hair follicle or other small skin irritation/infection. Itchy as it heals.
posted by Toddles at 2:55 PM on July 1, 2015

Well, I always say this about mysterious spots because it took so long to get my own diagnosis of lymphotoid papulosis. But you only need to think about that if you get more of them showing up. Otherwise, I'm going to side with the ingrown hair people because I'm certain you would have noticed any insect of the size required to leave a bite that size!
posted by mibo at 3:14 PM on July 1, 2015

Looks like a zit or infected hair follicle to me. My husband gets those in summer when he sweats a lot.
posted by Ms. Moonlight at 6:00 AM on July 2, 2015

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