How to Kill Fleas When They Jump on You

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Fleas can jump up up to five feet, so if your pets have fleas you may be next. If you find yourself the object of a flea's search for blood, act fast: each female flea can lay up to 400 eggs during her lifetime, so killing her can significantly reduce the future population. But slapping a flea doesn't have the same effect as that action on a mosquito: fleas have a tough exoskeleton. To kill them, you also need to be tough.

Things You'll Need

  • Soap
  • Warm water
  • Petroleum jelly (optional)
  • Be vigilant: look for the flea if you have been a recent victim of one. Fleas can land on you and be gone again in less than a twentieth of a second. Once you spot the flea, be ready to strike.

  • Pinch the flea between your thumb and index or middle finger.

  • Squeeze tight and slowly make the motion as if snapping your fingers. This rolls the flea between your finger and thumb and basically shreds the flea's exoskeleton.

  • Discard the flea's body in a garbage can or wash it down the sink.

  • Wash your hands with soap and warm water after your kill.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you're squeamish about snapping fleas, you can also keep a bowl or warm sudsy water near you. Once the flea lands on you, pinch it and dunk it in the water to drown it. You also can dab a glob of petroleum jelly on the flea when it lands.
  • Fleas carry disease. Always wash your hands after coming into contact with one.

References

  • Photo Credit George Marks/Retrofile/Getty Images
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