What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?
Bed bugs are small, oval-shaped insects that start life as tiny, 1.5 mm nymphs. Nymphs are generally opaque and milky white. Adults grow to be about 5 mm, with females averaging slightly larger than their male counterparts. Adults are reddish-brown in color, and consist of apple seed-shaped bodies, with short antennae and flightless wings.
Are Bed Bugs Dangerous?
Bed bugs feed on blood, much like mosquitoes. Their bites themselves are not dangerous, but multiple bites can cause excessive itching and scratching, leading to secondary infections, which may be dangerous. Bed bug bites are small, unlike spider bites, and they are unlikely to be noticed. What will be noticeable is that many people report them to be quite itchy. Bites can also appear on the skin as a blotchy, red rash, which is sometimes mistaken for skin conditions, such as eczema.
Where Do Bed Bugs Hide?
As bed bugs are small for much of their life cycle, especially as nymphs, they can be difficult to find, even in plain sight. Adults can be troublesome to spot, as they gravitate toward dark corners of the home, such as in cracks between baseboards, under the edges of wallpaper, inside appliances, and even in electrical housings. They also hide in fabrics, and it’s important to check crevasses in furniture and along the seams of mattresses for signs of bed bug activity. These insects like to hide in excess clutter such as cardboard boxes and newspaper piles.
What Are the Signs of Bed Bugs?
Even a large infestation can be difficult for a novice to diagnose. In addition to identifying bed bug bites, look for small stains on fabrics. When bed bugs feed, they often leave small stains in surrounding areas. Bed bugs tend to bed down close to their feeding grounds. This means that upholstered chairs, couches, sheets, and mattresses should be checked thoroughly for both stains and for live bed bugs. Even if no live insects are found, eggs and eggshells are commonly found in the surrounding areas. Eggs are tiny, about 1 mm in size, so it is important to thoroughly inspect the area if an infestation is suspected.
How Did I Get Bed Bugs in My Home?
Bed bugs are notorious hitchhikers. Many an unsuspecting family has come home from vacation to discover that they have inadvertently introduced these pests into their homes. Bed bugs hide during daylight hours, often embedding themselves in luggage and clothing. They may also be introduced into homes by way of used furniture. Connected living spaces such as apartment buildings are also susceptible, as bed bugs will travel between apartments without direct introduction.
How Do I Get Rid of Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs are a serious concern and are most efficiently dealt with by professional exterminators. Family uses well-established methods proven to be effective against bed bugs, such as the thorough use of trusted products. This treatment includes follow-up inspections and applications to ensure that these pests have been eliminated from the home. Our team will instruct you on the most efficient ways to prevent future infestations.
Does Family Have Any Bed Bug Prevention Tips?
- Remember bed bugs are hitchhikers and will enter homes on people and belongings. It is imperative to inspect used items carefully before bringing them inside.
- Be careful when traveling as bed bugs are often picked up on airplanes, in hotel rooms, and other areas where people congregate in large numbers.
- Inspect hotel rooms or other accommodations, paying close attention to mattress seams, bed frames, and other areas near beds.
- After vacationing or upon return from your business trip, leave your suitcase outside until you’ve inspected it for bed bugs. Wash clothing in the hottest water the fabric can withstand and vacuum the suitcase. Be sure to dispose of the vacuum bag outside of the house.
- If you’re welcoming guests or even college students home on vacation, ask them to check their belongings for these biting pests.