What Happens If You Swallow A Bug? You Won’t Believe!

what happens if you swallow a bug

In cartoons and films eating bugs can change your entire biology. They claim that due to the sudden ingestion of these insects, their DNA overlapped the DNA of man and changed the man into a spider or bug. Though physically he or she is not changed, they developed their characteristics and behave like these insects. All these stories are illogical and do not relate to our common life.  But a common man can ask a question.

What happens if you swallow a bug? We are here to satisfy your quest about the accidental entry of these tiny creatures into your mouth. 

Sudden ingestion of bugs causes no harm, it will digest like your food. But if you are allergic to stink bugs, fire ants, and cockroaches it will lead to mild to severe infections, like food poisoning, asthma, low blood pressure, or cardiac problems.

Aphids, cicadas, stink bugs, bed bugs, and water bugs are classified under the order Hemiptera which is a big part of arthropods. Let us discuss the accidental entry of these into the human body.

What Happens If You Eat A Bug

It can happen when you are on a morning walk and jogging on the track, suddenly a bug flies into your mouth. You accidentally swallow that bug. A sudden disgusting feeling comes to your mind and you feel some nausea. Certainly disgusting but the question is; Is eating insects harmful?

No, eating up any insect does not harm you. But if you accidentally swallow a stinging or biting insect, it may bite your lips, mouth cavity, and food pipe and you feel pain and swelling for some time.

If you are allergic to biting insect-like bees or wasps, it will cause unusual acute pain. But the intensity of pain and swelling depends on the degree of allergic reaction your body shows. In high allergic reactions, it may be life-threatening. 

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What Happen if you Eat A Bug Alive

During the spring and summer seasons, small children may eat small insects while playing in parks. Their parents became frustrated and in worry try to consult rescue teams. Don’t worry, eating bugs alive is not very dangerous.

what happen if you eat a bug alive

The human digestive system can easily digest arthropods just like meat. Usually eating stinging bugs will cause mild pain and localized swelling. Sometimes people who are allergic to bites have severe reactions; they may have swelling of the face, dizziness, low blood pressure, and even arrest in cardiac problems.

In this case, if the patient doesn’t have an Epi-Pen allergy proves to be fatal to health.

What is An Epi-Pen?  

An Epi-Pen is a hypodermal device used for allergic patients. It administers the epinephrine used for emergency treatment of acute allergic reactions.

For allergy patients, an EpiPen can mean the difference between life and death.

What Happens If You Swallow A Bug During Sleep

People who sleep with open mouths can face such problems. A stray bug may enter it and you suddenly awake from a sound sleep. After coughing this tiny creature may come from your mouth and scare you. Don’t scare if it comes after coughing or vomiting.

If you ingest a cockroach accidentally during sleep its reaction depends on your immunity. If you are not immune to cockroaches, its protein produces an inhalation problem, especially for asthma patients. It can trigger an Asthma attack.

Bed- bugs cause no reaction. It is just like other arthropods that are easily digested by the body. Bed bugs may disturb your sleep but their accidental ingestion during sleep never harms you.

What happens If You Swallow A Bug While Running

Beetles and fleas are very common in parks or green areas. Entering these tiny creatures in one’s mouth is not common. But if you are running for your usual exercise it may happen.

 Sometimes these insects are also transmitted from your pet.

These insects are vectors for many kinds of tapeworms. In case of ingesting such bugs and fleas, you have been infected with parasites like a tapeworm. 

Old persons and children are more infected by these insects.

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What Happen If You Eat A Bug In Salad/Vegetable

Different types of insects inhabitants green vegetables during their life cycle. White Fly is a very common insect that usually occurs on greenhouse crops. Tomatoes, peppers, hibiscus, petunias, cucumber, eggplants, fuchsia, geraniums, chrysanthemums, and potatoes most of which are used in a salad are affected by this.

These bugs and flies are very small and can be swallowed easily by eating salad and vegetables. These never harm you but if they enter through spoiled food may cause food poisoning. Symptoms of food poisoning can range from mild to severe.

Lettuce also contains many insects which may enter through eating salad. Try to use it after washing properly. 

Bugs as traditional food

Perhaps you could not believe it but in some parts of the world like Asia, and Latin America.

And in Africa, insects are a usual part of the diet. About 2 billion people consume them regularly. These bugs contain protein and very little fat.

 These are an abundant source of food because arthropods make up one-third of total organisms. Grasshoppers tacos, roasted stink bugs, boiled dragonflies, and fried ants are just the beginning of international culinary experiences.    

What To Do When a Bug Got Stuck to Your Windpipe

When you feel a bug is stuck during accidental ingestion first confirm it is not entering your windpipe. If someone is choking they are:

  • Unable to speak
  • Difficulty in breathing or noisy inhalation
  • cough forcefully or weakly
  • Skin color changes into pale or bluish
  • Lose consciousness

.If you see the above symptoms consult the doctor immediately.

What To Do If Bug Stuck to Esophagus/Food Pipe

If you feel pain in your throat after a quick entry of a bug, especially a stink bug, firefly, or any other bug you may use the following tips which are not only effective but show immediate results.

1- Coca-cola Trick

If some insect or food is stuck to your esophagus cock shows a magical effect. Doctors and emergency workers often use this to dislodge foreign particles. Doctors believe that carbon dioxide in soda bottles disintegrates stuck particles.

2- Simethicone

Over-the-counter medication used for gas pain may help in separating the clinging bug from the food pipe. Medication containing simethicone (Gas-X) prepares the stomach to produce gas. This gas exerts pressure and pushes the insect to lose and pass through the food pipe and reach the stomach.

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3- Water

A few big sips of water can pass the bug down into the stomach. Our saliva makes the food pipe slippery enough that no food or other particles are easily stuck in the food pipe. If you feel dry and blocked throat, a big sip can remove all the blockage

4- A Moist Piece Of Food

Sometimes food pushes the other stuck particles very easily. Soft bread soaked in milk or bread with water can remove the hindering things in the esophagus. For this purpose, bananas are also very useful.

5- Alka Seltzer or Baking Soda

A very effective remedy is the use of the Alka-Seltzer drug which is effervescent. This drug dissolves in liquid just similar to soda. The bubbles they evolved may help in disintegrating the stick insect 

6- Use of Butter

Sometimes food pipes need extra lubrication. A tablespoon of butter helps enough to make the food pipe more slippery and stink bugs may be separated easily due to extra fats. This smoother it down if something is stuck.

7- Avoid Bad Food

Avoid Spicy, hot, or irritating food. Wait for some time and give time to your body to fix all such issues.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Safe to Swallow a Bug? 

There is no danger of swallowing bugs accidentally. The human digestive system can easily digest bugs or other arthropods. In many parts of the world, these insects are used in their daily diet. Due to low fat and high protein, some Koreans or Chinese eat it in raw or semi-cooked conditions.

What Happens If You Breathe in a Bug?

If you feel a bug is trapped in your windpipe you should consult the doctor immediately Unless some symptoms of choking occur never be scared of the bug. Your respiratory system is highly protected and cough and mucous help to remove it quickly. However, if forceful coughing leads to a breathing problem it is a dangerous sign. 


Sometimes accidental swallowing of bugs may be disgusting and you are afraid of big health issues. Never frightened, these are digested like your food. Some allergic reactions may be terrifying to you. But remember to control your nerves and never confuse. Though this happens suddenly and you could not save yourself but nature protects you if you follow our wise suggestions. If you also passed through such a strange incident, share your feelings with us.  

James Randolph

Hey, James is here with you. This blog is a powerful online resource to help you get instant answers to your superstitious beliefs, facts, and the reality of myths. Knowledge is your inner guidance system, and this blog empowers you to update, refine, reorganize and enhance your communication system. If you know well you can surely discuss facts with evidence. So, stay with us and be a master of what happens around you!

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