Nobody wants to deal with bed bugs, so seeing bugs that look like bed bugs on your bed may spark a feeling of panic. Bed bugs are elusive and so small, they can get difficult to identify. Therefore, getting to know more about the bugs that look like bed bugs is very important.
You will not get so panicky anymore when you spot some bugs on your bed. You will know what to do with it and how to treat it. Before we get into the description of the bugs, we may want to know the basic, first.
What Are Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are small, brownish, oval insects that live on the blood of humans and animals. Scientifically, the bedbug is known as Cimex lectularius. The mature bedbugs have the size of an apple seed and flat bodies. The bugs can turn reddish after feeding.
These insects cannot fly but they can quickly move over walls, floors, ceilings, and other space. The reason why it is called bedbug because this insect eats primarily while you are asleep. That is why this type of bug is often found on the bed. They commonly hide, feed, and lay the eggs on the bed.
Besides, you can also find bedbugs on the couches, bed frames, upholstered chairs, molding, ceiling holes, clothing, cracks in walls, and much other space that is dark and protected. Those areas are a perfect sport for bedbugs to multiply.
Physically, bedbugs have a syringe-like mouth extension. They use it to be inserted into the skin of the host. These bugs will target the exposed skin area. They need about 10 minutes to fill up when the host is sleeping. The bite will not wake us up.
Bedbugs never transmit diseases to humans. However, they are about to attack someone allergic to their bits. If you have an allergy, you can get more itchiness and swell from bedbugs bit than a bite from a mosquito.
Bugs That Look Like Bed Bugs
People have often mistaken bedbugs with the other kinds of bugs because many bugs are quite similar in appearance. Here are some of the descriptions that can help you determine the bugs and how to deal with it.
It closely resembles termites. Compared to the termites, this bug has softer bodies. It has a long and thin antennae. Usually, it has a pale brown or creamy yellow color. It’s about 1 to 6 millimeter big with segmented form.
You can find booklice in high humidity areas like damp books. The booklice can die easily when the area is dry because they can get dehydrated easily. According to a scientist, Booklice does not bite but it can cause asthma for certain people.
2. Spider Beetles
This type of beetles has long, thin legs with hairy antennae. It has no neck since the head is connected directly to the body. The color may range from pale brownish to almost black. It sometimes has reddish-brown too.
Usually, this beetles shaped oval. Spider Beetles have wings. However, it does not mean that they all can fly. Only some species of spider beetles can fly with their wings. This type of bug does not bite, so you do not have to worry about that.
You can find spider beetles in your house. The best place for spider beetles to live is in wooden structures. If the area has poor sanitation, that would invite Spider beetle to live in.
3. Bat Bugs
These bugs are the most similar to bed bugs. Even their name is pronounced the same. At a glance, you might get a problem in identifying which one the bed bugs are. They both have a brown color and the size is like an apple seed.
The only difference you can see between the two bugs in the hair. Bat bugs have longer hair than the bed bugs on their head.
Bat bugs have wings but they cannot fly with it. Just like the bed bugs, bat bugs will also bite. They bite only when the bats are not nearby. Just like its name “Bat” bug. This insect is usually found at the place where bats live.
4. Carpet Beetles
These beetles are completely different from spider beetles. Carpet beetles have hidden heads that have short, visible antennae. These bugs have a black and white pattern that has orange scales. Carpet beetles have wings that can fly during the daytime.
Even though this bug does not bite, it’s known to cause some allergic reactions that may lead to dermatitis. You can find Carpet beetles on the fabric like carpet. The bugs are often brought inside the house from the fresh-cut flowers.
Just like bed bugs and bat bugs, fleas will bite. They bite humans and animals to food on the blood. However, fleas like to feed on animal blood better than human blood. It does not mean that fleas do not want to bite humans too.
They tend to bite humans on the lower body and it will get itchy right away. What makes fleas more dangerous than bedbugs is their ability to jump. For the size, fleas are about 1/8 inch long. Fleas have round heads and long legs. It is easy to differ with each bug.
Fleas are often found in the outside. They are often brought inside the house by animals. To prevent it, you have to wash your pets regularly.
How to Identify Bed Bugs
To get you easier to identify which one the real bed bugs are, here are few things you need to look for.
1. The Cause of the Bite
When people have bite marks on their bodies, they become aware that maybe there is an infestation of a bug somewhere in the house. However, having bite makes is a bad indicator of the bugs you are dealing with.
You still do not know what caused that bite. Is it really from bed bugs, mosquitoes, fleas, spiders, or any other bugs? Well, there is a high chance that it is not bedbugs.
2. There Are a Bite and Bug
In this case, you have bite marks on your body and you have just spotted some bugs in your house. The best thing you should do is to take the bugs and put them in a small plastic bag. It is useful evidence you can show to a pest expert to help you identify the bugs.
If you have read the previous section, you might already know which kind of bug is that. To convince your identification, you may need to look at the checkpoints here.
3. The Color Check
Check the color of the bugs. If it were the bed bug, then, the color would be copper-brown for the adult ones. When it is at its nymph state, the color would be translucent white.
4. The Size and Shape Check
The bed bug will be about 3/16 inch in size. If it is smaller, it is unlikely bedbugs. For the shape, bed bugs are oval and horizontally flat. It has four-segmented antennae with prominent compound eyes.
5. Wings and Bite
Bed bugs have wings that are hard to distinguish. The wings do not make the bed bugs fly. Bed bugs can bite you during your sleep to feed the blood.
6. Fleas or Bed bugs
Many people have a problem to identify between fleas and bed bugs. They look similar to each other. It is hard to differentiate them since they are very small. The difference between fleas and bed bugs is what each bug prefers. Fleas are likely to be found on animals than humans.
How to Know If You Have Bed Bugs
There are signs of bed bugs you need to know so you can clean them up immediately. Many people do not know that they have an infestation of bed bugs until they get bite marks. As we know, bugs are travelers and they like to hitchhike on the body, clothing, and suitcases.
It is important to spot the signs of bed bugs in your house. You can find bed bugs hidden in box springs, behind frames, couches, box springs, chairs, electrical outlets, and mattresses.
How do you know for sure that there are bed bugs in your house? There are a variety of signs you can find to help you detect the bugs. It is important to catch the infestation first. The sooner it is found, the cheaper the easier the problem would be.
Here are some signs that show you the possibility of having bed bug infestation in the house.
1. Shed Skins
Right before the bed bugs reach a new life stage, they will molt and shed their skins. When you can sport some shredded skins lying around the infestation areas like around edges, mattress, and crevices.
Spots of blood might be found on the bed, sofa, or chair. When they feed your blood, bed bugs tend to insert an anesthetic that can cause you bleeding a bit.
The eggs of bed bugs are so tiny and they are often hard to see, although you can still see the small whitest eggs. You can find it on mattress creases and other places that can invite insects to live in.
When the bed bugs reach adulthood, people would call it as Nymphs. In this cycle, the bed bugs will be white-colored. The color would get darker as the nymphs get older.
5. Fecal Matter
After consuming the blood, bed bugs will try to leave some kind of fecal deposit. The fecal looks like black dots as a small plan.
When the house has a heavy infestation of a bed bug, you may small a telltale odor. Many people smell the odor and describe it as coriander.
7. Live Adult Bugs
As we know, bed bugs are very active at night. You can even catch some of the bugs if you search them. Bed bugs are quite hard to find. The perfect solution is to call a pest control professional to have the area inspected.
The Spot Where Bed Bugs Possibly Hide
Because of its flat shape, a bed bug can easily hide in any space or crevice. You can find the bed bugs hidden in the creases of your mattress. Besides the bed, you may also find the bugs hiding in these spots:
1. Behind Picture Frames
This is a great quite place for bed bugs to hide. You may need to check everything that is hanging on your wall. If you have many picture frames on your wall, like a gallery wall, you need more effort to check them regularly. Pay attention to the wall space above the beds or sofas.
Besides the bed, the structure of the bed is also the best place for bugs to live. They can hide behind the headboard that is attached to the wall. If the headboard made of wood, there will be cracks right in the spot where they get in. You can also find the eggs, nymphs, and shed skins there.
3. Chairs and Sofas or Couches
Bed bugs are not only living peacefully in the bed and its structure. You might also find bed bugs on your chairs or sofas. They might be hiding in the creases or around the cushions.
4. Dresser Drawers
There will be crevices and nooks inside the drawers. It could be a nice place for bed bugs to stay and multiply. You need to check it regularly.
5. Electrical Outlets
Anything that is attached to the wall including electrical outlets needs to be checked too. It has the potential to be the bed bugs infestation. You need to remove the faceplates and check what is inside and behind the plates.
6. Piles of Clothes
Bed bugs can also be hiding inside piles of clothes. You may have them on the floor and in drawers. Bugs can be hidden anywhere. The house does not have to be dirty to get bed bugs. Even though your house is clean but cluttered you may easily get bed bugs in.
As said before, bed bugs are travelers, the notorious one. Here is an example. You must bring luggage when traveling. When staying in a hotel somewhere, you might put the luggage on the bed.
There is a chance the bugs from that bed hitch a ride and get inside your luggage that you will bring home.
Symptoms and Location of Bed Bug Bites
Usually, a bite from the bed bug will appear as a red mark. You can get it anywhere on your body. Sometimes, the red mark is a little bit raised. Sometimes it stays flat like a rash. The bits can come in the form of a line since they like to line up once they have a nice spot for feeding.
Besides, the same bed bug can return to the same spot to feed again. There are some spots on your body that is likely to be bitten by bed bugs. They are neck, hands, face, legs, torso, and arms. Most people would feel itchy after a bite of the bed bug, just like a mosquito bite.
Some other people can have no reaction when they bed bug bite. They will only get the red mark. Well, some people with a certain allergy could have a bad reaction to the bed bug bites. Do not worry! Generally, the bites from bed bugs will be healed on their own.
However, if the bed bugs become a concern, you need to seek medical treatment from the doctor. If you have a bad reaction to the bites, well, you have to seek physician treatment as soon as possible. Not to be bitten is probably the best way to deal with these bugs.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
The first thing you need to do before getting rid of bed bugs in your house, you have to make sure that the insects you find are indeed the bed bugs. After it is confirmed, you can begin the treatment of the bed bugs. Here are some treatments you can try.
– Give the space an extended exposure to temperatures below 0 degrees Celsius or above 49 degrees Celsius.
– Do the heavy-duty vacuuming to all carpets, beds, upholstered furniture, molding, and cracks in the wood.
– For the clothes and bedding that contains bugs, you should wash it immediately
– Seal the entire infected mattress in plastic to make the bed bugs suffocate.
– Use dust insecticides to kill the bugs slowly. The chemical will act as drying agents.
– Use insecticides that will stop the reproduction of the bedbugs
– Use contact insecticides to kill the bed bugs right away. It contains chlorfenapyr and pyrethroids.
– Fumigate the entire spot with poisonous gas
You can try some of the treatments above. If one method is comfortable enough for you and able to stop your bed bugs problem, then you do not need to try another treatment.
A problem with bed bugs is something we need to concern about. The best thing you could do is to prevent the bed bugs from coming into the house by regularly cleaning the house and keep checking the potential spots for bed bugs infestation.
By ready the whole article here, you now know how to treat the bed bugs in your house. You can also recognize which one is the real bed bugs and which one is the bugs that look like bed bugs.