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Bedbugs are reddish-brown small parasitic mites that attack and bite the exposed skin of humans and animals that are sleeping to feed on their blood. Although bedbugs aren’t known to spread disease, they can cause other public health and economic issues.
Bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed; bed bugs burrow in the cracks and holes of beds, headboards, box springs, bed frames and any other things near the bed. The possibility of finding bedbugs grow if you spend time in areas with significant turnovers of nighttime guests — such as hospital, hotels or homeless shelters.
If you have bedbugs in your home, professional extermination is recommended.
It can be tough to identify bedbug bites from other insect bites or rashes. Generally, the areas on the body of bedbug bites normally are:
- Red, often with a darkened red spot in the middle
- Arranged in a rough line or a cluster
- Positioned on the face, neck, arms, and hands
- Some people do not react to bedbug bites, while others experience an allergic reaction that can encompass severe itching, blisters or hives.
When should you see a physician
If you encounter allergic reactions or acute skin reactions to bedbug bites, you should show your doctor for medical treatment
Bedbug infestations may be linked to:
- Changes in pest control practices
- Increased international travel
- Insecticide resistance
Where do bed bugs hide?
Bedbug infestations frequently happen throughout or near where people sleep. They hide in the cracks and crevices of:
- Box springs
- Bed frames
- Objects or clutter near beds
Bed bugs can also be found:
- Underneath strips of peeling paint or loose wallpaper
- Underneath rugs or carpeting next to baseboards
- In upholstered furniture seams
- Underneath light electrical outlets or switch plates.
Bedbugs are great at finding other methods of movement. They can travel from one site to another by attaching to clothing, luggage, bedding, furniture, and boxes.
Bedbugs can crawl about the same speed of ladybug, and can simply travel between rooms and floors in hotels or apartment complexes.
Are bedbugs a Sign of uncleanliness?
Bedbugs don’t have preferences in their environment is clean or messy. All they require is a warm host and many of hiding points.
Bedbugs are more prevalent in congested lodgings that have high turnover in occupancy, such as:
- Trains and buses
- Dorm rooms
- Apartment complexes
- Homeless shelters
- Cruise ships
- Refugee camps
Tests and diagnosis of Bed Bugs
If you presume that you’re being bitten by bedbugs, promptly examine your home for the insects. Fully examine cracks in furniture, walls, and mattresses. You may be required to perform your examination at night time when bedbugs are active.
Look for these clues:
- Dark specks. Typically located adjacent mattress seams, these specks are bedbug droppings.
- Reddish rusty colored stains. You may notice small smears of blood on your bed sheets where you inadvertently squashed a bedbug.
- Empty exoskeletons. Bedbugs shed five times before maturing into adults. These empty skins are pale yellow.
A skin cream including hydrocortisone (Cortaid)
An oral antihistamine, such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
If you form a skin infection from scratching bedbug bites, your physician may designate an antibiotic.
Treating your home
Once your symptoms are managed, you must stop the underlying infestation. This can be tough since bedbugs hide so well and can exist several months without eating. Your best chance may be to hire a professional exterminator, who may use a blend of nonchemical treatments and pesticides.
Nonchemical treatments may include:
Laundering. Washing and drying pieces in a dryer on a high setting will destroy bedbugs in clothing or linens.
Freezing. Bedbugs are also suspectable to temperatures under 32 F (0 C), but you’d need to keep the items outdoors or in the freezer for several days.
Vacuuming. A thorough vacuuming of cracks and crevices can physically remove bedbugs from an area. Empty the vacuum after each use.
Some professional exterminators use transportable devices to elevate the temperature of a room to a lethal temperature. All stages of bedbugs can be killed at 122 F (50 C). In some instances, you may need to throw out extensively infested items such as mattresses or couches.
Prevention of Bed Bugs
Cover up. Since bedbugs don’t tend to hide under clothing, you may be able to dodge bites by wearing pajamas that conceal as much skin as possible.
Bug spray. Insect repellents intended to protect against mosquitoes or ticks are not very effective against bedbugs.
Mosquito netting. Bed nets saturated with the pesticide permethrin may help guard sleepers against bedbug bites. However, this method may be aiding bedbugs grow resistance to this pesticide.
Secondhand items. Examine used upholstered furniture and mattresses thoroughly before bringing them into your home.
Hotel precautions. Inspect mattress seams for bedbug excrement and set your luggage on dressers or tables rather than on the floor.
Birds and bats. Discard any neighboring bird and bat environments that may work as a refuge for bedbugs.