Can Fire Ants Be Harmful for Your Little Ones?

08 April 2024 · 3 min read

Fire Ants and Children

As Florida moms, we do everything we can to provide a safe environment for the kids to play and explore. But despite our best efforts, run-ins with pests like fire ants can happen. We are here to provide some insight if you find yourself dealing with fire ant mounds around your home or in your backyard. In this blog we will share with you all the steps you need to take to protect your child from fire ants

Do all ants bite?

Stay Calm and Follow These Steps

If your child is the victim of a fire ant ambush, it is critical that you remain calm in the face of tears and swelling. Yes, those stings are insanely painful at first, but with the proper response, you can get the situation under control. 

Here’s steps you need to take to protect your child from fire ants:

1- Get Away Quickly – Remove your child from the area to avoid additional stings. Brush away any ants that are still attached but avoid disturbing stingers that may become attached to your child’s clothes. Getting your child away from the mound is the top priority.

2- Inspect Your Child’s Clothes: Once safely away, try to remove or inspect clothes to remove any fire ants that may have remained attached. This crucial step aims to prevent further discomfort or stings.

3- Apply an Ice Pack: Applying a cold compress or ice pack to the sting sites can help reduce swelling and relieve burning pain. Do this as soon as possible, using twenty minutes on, twenty minutes off regimen.

4- Clean and Treat Stings: After the swelling subsides, clean the sting spots with soap and water. If the skin is broken, apply antibiotic ointment and bandages to prevent infection.

5- Offer Relief: Home remedies and OTC treatments like aloe vera gel, hydrocortisone cream or acetaminophen can provide relief from discomfort.

6- Watch for Allergic Reactions: While most stings cause temporary, localized irritation, some children may experience severe, potentially life-threatening allergic reactions. These reactions can include difficulty breathing, nausea, dizziness, and swelling in the throat or tongue. If this happens, seek immediate emergency medical attention.

The first few hours after a fire ant blitz are definitely not fun for your little one. The stings are extremely painful, resulting in swelling, redness, and tears. It’s difficult to watch but try to remain calm and soothing. Offer cuddles, frozen treats, and reassurance that the awful burning will subside.

Protecting Your Yard from Fire Ants: DIY Tricks

Fire ants can be a real nuisance in yards, with their unsightly mounds and painful stings. Before trying DIY methods, it’s important to look for signs of fire ant infestation in your yard to make sure you are treating the right type of ants. You should look out for small mounds of soil, sometimes with a visible hole in the center, and ants that become aggressive when the mound is disturbed.

While professional pest control is an option, there are several DIY methods for eliminating fire ants that you can turn into fun outdoor activities with your kids:

  • Dish Soap and Water: Pre-mix in a spray bottle and let your child help spray onto the mounds.
  • Diatomaceous Earth: You can sprinkle their powdery fossil substance around mounds and ant trails.
  • Boric Acid Bait: Combine boric acid powder with a sugary substance, such as jelly or syrup. The sweet bait will draw the ants and the boric acid will kill them when they consume it.

Not only are you safely treating the fire ant problem, but you’re turning it into an activity. This allows you to spend quality time with your child while also teaching them about science and nature. Make sure to supervise young children, as fire ants can be aggressive and deliver painful stings.

However, it’s important to note that these DIY treatments may or may not work effectively, especially in cases of severe infestations. Professional pest control services provide the most reliable and long-lasting solutions for fire ant problems.

Control is Key

If you tried all the DIY methods and still have a fire ant infestation problem, then it is time to call for professional help. Greenhouse Termite and Pest Control offer kid-friendly products to ensure your little ones are protected from pests without the headache that comes with worrying about harmful chemicals. Our team takes extra care to apply treatments in a way that minimizes potential exposure to your children. With Greenhouse you can have peace of mind knowing that your kids are safe and free to enjoy life pest-free. Don’t let fire ants ruin another playdate – get Greenhouse on the job!

Fire ant control for my yard with a lawn spray

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