Fact: If you try to detach a leech from your skin using an abrupt method such as fire, alcohol or urination, it may regurgitate the contents of its stomach into the wound, increasing risk of infection.

The word "toxic" is thrown around like confetti on New Year's Eve, nowadays. Anyone writing for a free-thought platform thinks he/she knows what the five best pieces of advice for approaching a toxic relationship or situation are.

What these articles don't account for is that some people are just leeches -- no more, no less.

Fact: Leeches release an antihistamine when they latch onto prey; thus, bites are relatively painless, but can bleed profusely.

Often times, people don't even realize they've been bitten by a leech unless someone else points it out. A leech is relatively small, so one may not even notice until made aware by an outsider.


It takes just a little at a time, making you think it's not a huge deal, but what happens when it's hungry again or it brings other leeches around to take advantage of the source?

"But Jackie, what about medicinal leeches? Aren't they used to heal?"

Sure, medicinal leeches can be used to redirect blood flow and prevent clotting during medical procedures, but would they stop unless full or removed by a medical professional? No. There's a cutoff point for the prey that they don't understand or care about.

Fact: A leech can survive for months after one feeding.

If a leech doesn't need something, it won't be around.

They're parasites. They're not your friends. They're good for one thing and one thing only: Sucking the life out of you to fuel themselves.

Fact: A leech will immediately try to reattach itself to the closest source of food if interrupted and removed from the skin.

When you serve as the main lifeline, a leech is naturally going to be a little unearthed when that supply is cut off. It's going to fight to hold onto anything else it can grasp.

If it can't, it will leave a bleeding wound for you to care for and squirm off with every little bit you gave it to survive. You're just a link in its food chain. If not you, it would have been another (and there will be).

Fact: Wild leeches wait for larger animals to pass, then ambush their prey.

Being the bigger person doesn't matter to a leech -- in fact, it's cause for them to take more. It will still latch on and pursue the sole thing it exists to gain: the life source of another.

If you saw a leech, would you run or let it bite?