What Is Bed Bug. Bedbugs are tiny, wingless insects that survive only on the blood of warm-blooded animals. The two major species prefer to infect humans as their hosts.
Bedbugs can be found feeding on human blood in two different species. Cimex lectularius and Cimex hemipterus are the scientific names for them. They have been discovered in Egyptian tombs dating back 3,500 years.
Bedbugs have developed as nest parasites and dwell in the nests of birds and bats over millions of years. Some of them have mastered the art of adapting to human conditions.
What is bed bug
Bed bugs, also known as Cimex lectularius, feed on blood at night and are insects from the genus Cimex.
Bites may cause skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms in humans. They may also cause other health problems. Skin changes from minor redness to huge blisters may occur as a result of bed bug bites.
Itchiness is usually present and symptoms may appear in minutes to days. Some people may be sleepy or have a fever. The body’s uncovered regions are frequently impacted.
They don’t seem to transmit any illnesses through their bites. Areas of dead skin or vasculitis may occasionally occur as complications.
Cimex lectularius (common bed bug) and Cimex hemipterus, which is most often found in the tropics, are the two species of insects that cause bites. They range in size from 1 to 7 mm.
They were transported inside personal belongings or spread by crawling between nearby sites. The most common cause of infestation is not a lack of hygiene, but rather in crowded places.
The discovery of the insects as well as the presence of matching symptoms is required for diagnosis. Bed bugs like to hide in dark, undiscovered areas such as mattress seams or wall cracks.
What do bed bugs look like?
Flat, brown or reddish-brown bugs with six legs, bed bugs are flat. Bed bugs are smaller than apple seeds (5-7 mm) and adults.
If they haven’t been fed, young bed bugs are white to yellow in color and appear transparent. The eggs of bed bugs are tiny, almost the size of a pinhead, and have a pearly white color.
A black dot on a white egg indicates that an egg is more than five days old. Even a few bed bugs in your home can quickly turn into an infestation, because a female bed bug lays 200 to 500 eggs throughout her lifetime.
Where are bed bugs found?
From North and South America to Africa, Asia, and Europe, bed bugs may be found all over the globe.
Bed bug infestations have lately exploded rapidly in sections of the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and other areas of Europe, despite their presence having previously been regarded as a difficulty in catching countries.
The presence of bed bugs in five-star hotels and resorts is not determined by the cleanliness of the living conditions where they are found; rather, it is determined by their presence.
The places where people sleep are often infested with bed bugs. Apartments, shelters, rooming flats, hotels, cruise ships, buses, trains, and dorm rooms are among the types of locations in this category.
They hide among the folds of mattresses, boxsprings, bed frames, headboards, dresser tables, behind wallpaper, or any other clutter or objects around a bed during the day.
Bed bugs are known to travel up to 100 feet during a single night, however they prefer to stay within 8 feet of where people sleep.
Where do bed bugs live?
Bed bugs are most typically active at night and dwell within eight feet of where you sleep.
Bed bugs hide in the places around your bed, such as: around the bed frame, inside the mattress, and near the sheets.
Along the mattress seams.
Box springs, bed frame, and headboard are all included.
Between and along the seams of bedroom furniture or sofa cushions.
In the joints of drawers of bedroom furniture.
In your bedroom or next to your bed, look for cracks, crannies, and folds in anything.
Along the margins of loose wallpaper, around electrical outlets, and around corners of walls.
Bed bugs typically survive six to 24 months on average. Bed bugs can survive for up to a year without eating, depending on the severity of the infestation.
When Bedbugs Bite
Bedbugs are most likely to bite people while they are sleeping, and they are most active at night. They pierced the skin and took blood via an extended beak, which they did. After feeding for three to ten minutes, the insects become swollen and crawl away unnoticed.
Bedbug Bites normally start out as painless welts, but they soon turn into itchy welts. Bedbug stings are anyplace on the skin that is exposed while sleeping, unlike flea stings, which are mostly around the ankles. In addition, unlike flea bites, the bites do not have a red center.
People who are suffering from bedbug bites and welts may blame the symptoms on other factors, such as mosquitoes. You’ll have to locate and identify bedbugs in order to confirm your bites.
While their victims are sleeping, most bedbugs feed. They draw blood in a way that is painless.
They inject a little amount of saliva into the host’s skin while feeding. The person may become more sensitive to their saliva and the chemicals it contains if they feed on one individual for many weeks. An allergy might develop in the host as a result of the infection.
Biting patterns in bedbugs are similar to fleas. Each row is likely to have two or three bites. The bedbug is most likely feeding when it is interrupted, and then returns for its next bite about half an inch further down.
Bites may take up to 14 days to appear, although they typically appear within a few days. Bites from bedbugs are bigger than fleabites and do not feature a red center. The bumps are usually raised and reddish in color.
They might be found along the veins’ routes, known as the “breakfast, lunch, and supper symbol,” in groups of three.
The majority of individuals who are bitten experience little or no symptoms, and they are unaware it happened. As a result, it becomes more difficult to prevent or detect future infestations. Some people, on the other hand, may experience nausea. Scars and skin infections can be caused by scratching the bites, according to a trusted source.
People may have anaphylactic symptoms after being bitten by bedbugs. Asthma may occur in response to bedbugs, however this is uncommon.
Signs of Infestation
You might have bedbugs if you awakened with itchy regions you didn’t have when you went to sleep, particularly if you acquired a used mattress or other used furnishings at the same time. Bedbug infestation can also be indicated by the following:
Blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases.
Bedbug excrement stains on sheets, mattresses, bedclothes, and walls in the form of black or rusty spots.
In places where bedbugs hide, check for bedbug fecal spots, egg shells, or discarded skins.
The bugs’ scent glands produce an offensive musty odor.
Remove all bedding and check it thoroughly for indications of the bugs or their before you decide if you have an infestation. Excrement is what you may call it. Check the seams in the wood framework and remove the dust cover over the base of the box springs. Where the fabric is stapled to the wood frame, peel back the fabric.
Also look inside books, telephones, and radios, the carpet edge, and even electrical outlets in the area surrounding the bed. Bedbugs can attach to your clothing, so check your closet. Call an exterminator if you aren’t sure about bedbug symptoms; they’ll know what to look for.
Begin steps to eliminate the pests and prevent them from returning if you discover evidence of infestation.
How can I prevent bed bug bites?
Inspecting your home for signs of bed bugs is the best way to prevent bed bug bites. Following these steps may also help reduce your risk of bringing home bed bugs:
Protective plastic covers should be used to cover mattresses and box springs.
Throughout the evening, vacuum often, particularly in rooms near your bed.
Eliminate some bed bug hiding spots by reducing clutter in your home.
Close off your unit if you live in an apartment or other shared housing. Around baseboards, seal cracks.
Bed bugs cannot enter your home if there are light sockets and doors.
Bed bug detecting can be done in your hotel room before you leave. Make sure to check your hotel room/stay space for any upholstered furniture and the bed (undo the sheets/check the mattress). Before you prepare for your return journey home, inspect your luggage.
Wash all garments immediately with hot, soapy water and dry on high heat for 20 minutes when you get home after a trip.
Before bringing any of the furniture or mattresses you buy into your house, make sure they’re in good condition.
Before you buy, thoroughly examine any used clothing and textiles. Wring out the clothes and dry them on high heat for 20 minutes after washing them in hot, soapy water.
Should I also try pesticides?
If pesticides are utilized incorrectly, they may be ineffective and/or harmful. Use pesticides only if you follow these guidelines:
Only use pesticides that have been registered with the FDA. The Environmental Protection Agency is located in the United States. Ensure that they are labeled to manage bed bugs and have an EPA Registration Number on the label.
There are no repellents registered to control bed bugs that can be used on the human body, so do not apply pesticides directly to your body.
Do not use outdoor pesticides indoors.
Ensure that the pest control firm you choose has experience with bed bugs before you hire them. They should do everything IPM recommends, as well as any pesticide application. Use a company that has licensed applicators and is properly registered. A list of licensed companies may be found on the Department of Environmental Conservation’s website.
Bed bugs can be difficult to get rid of, and they may need the help of landlords, neighbors, and other people. It may be mentally and physically taxing.
If pest control firms are called in, it can also be costly. Just keep in mind that bed bugs are more of a inconvenience than a health risk and, with care, you may avoid or manage infestations.
The Residential Tenants’ Rights Handbook might tell you many of the rules that may assist you, as well as provide resources for more information on landlord and tenant concerns, such as bed bug infestations.
In order to manage bedbugs, cleaning up infested locations is important, but chemical therapies are typically required. It is vital to utilize products that may be safely used in bedrooms, even if treating your bed and room with insecticides might be harmful.
Unless the label says otherwise, do not treat mattresses or bedding.
For bedbug extermination, it’s usually best to hire a professional pest control technician.
What’s the best way to treat bedbug bites?
Bedbug bites typically heal in 1 to 2 weeks in most situations. The following are some ways to alleviate symptoms:
To relieve inflammation and itching, apply an over-the-counter or prescription steroid cream.
To relieve itching and burning, take an antihistamine pills.
To relieve swelling and discomfort, take an over-the-counter pain killer.
Take an antihistamine or take a Benadryl prior to bed to reduce your itching. Ask a doctor for stronger medication if needed.
There are various home treatments that may assist relieve the symptoms of bedbug bite, in addition to over-the-counter cures. Try any of the following options:
A towel wrapped around an ice pack or a cold cloth
Baking soda and water are mixed together in a thin paste.
How should you treat bedbug bites on a baby?
Check your baby’s sheets, mattress, bed frame, and baseboards for signs of bedbugs if you believe they have been bitten.
Bedbug bites on your baby or child can be treated with soap and water. Consider using over-the-counter anti-itch creams or low-strength steroids, in addition to a cold compress, for further relief. Make sure the baby’s nails are cut short so they don’t scratch their skin.
Before using topical steroid creams or swallowing antihistamines to treat the bites, speak with your child’s doctor or pharmacist. Babies and small children should not take some drugs.
Ask your kid not to scratch the bites if they are old enough to comprehend your instructions. It’s also a good idea to cut your child’s nails and apply a bandage to the bites to help prevent scratching.
Bed Bug Myths
Myth: Bed bugs can’t be seen.
Reality: With your naked eye, you should be able to see adult bed bugs, nymphs, and eggs.
Myth: Bed bugs prefer to live in filthy environments.
Reality: Bed bugs are drawn to heat, blood, and carbon dioxide, not dirt and grime. Clutter, on the other hand, provides more concealment opportunities.
Myth: Bed bugs transmit diseases.
Reality: Bed bugs have not been shown to transmit illness to people in any way, according to authorities.
Myth: that bed bugs are not a public health issue.
Reality: Bed bugs are a public health concern that must be addressed. We issued a Pesticide Registration Notice that listed pests of major public health concern, in collaboration with CDC and USDA, to identified public health concerns.
This list includes the term “bed bugs.” A joint statement on the public health consequences of bed bugs was issued by EPA and CDC in 2009.
Bed bugs are said to hide during bright light.
Reality: Bed bugs will bite you even if the lights are on at night.
Myth: Bed bug infestations can be easily killed by pesticide applications.
Bed bug management requires a treatment plan that incorporates a range of tactics as well as close attention to monitoring in order to be effective. Pesticide usage might be included into the plan, however it would not suffice to eliminate bed bugs.
Furthermore, bed bug populations have acquired resistance to the ways many pesticides work to exterminate bed bugs in different regions of the country. Certain products and techniques may fail if you’re working with a difficult population.
If you have bed bugs in your home, it’s a good idea to get advice from a pest control specialist.
Myth: Those that need assistance with bed bug management may get funds from the EPA.
Reality: Unfortunately, EPA does not have the funds to assist individuals with bed bug management. In the bed bug problem, our tasks are as follows:
When pesticides are used properly, they must be effective and will not harm people, non-target animals, or the ecosystem. Evaluate them to make sure this is the case.
To provide accurate information on bed bugs and how to manage them, he works with other federal agencies.
When attempting to eradicate or identify a bedbug infestation, keep the following facts in mind:
Between midnight and 5 a.m., is when the animals are most hungry. At any time, hungry bedbugs will seek to feed, but they avoid the light and choose the dark. It takes between 5 and 10 minutes to consume one meal. It will then hide itself in its own spot.
Every 5 to 10 days, the bugs will feed. They might, however, go without eating for up to 70 days. A bedbug that has been fed well has a life expectancy of up to three months.
They detect the presence of carbon dioxide on the breath and seek out human body heat to find their host.
With its mouth part, a bedbug will puncture the skin of its host. The host feels nothing because it injects saliva that contains an anesthetic, and the blood flows out freely because it injects a coagulant. After that, it drains blood until it is full. The bites aren’t felt until the skin has healed.
It may take up to 14 days for a bite to show up, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Only after they reach adulthood can bedbugs reproduce. A bedbug mother lays around seven eggs per day and up to hundreds throughout her life.
While bedbugs are highly resistant to removal techniques, they appear to be more of a bother than a significant health concern, according to a 2016 study of bedbug research. The bedbugs associated with humans and human disease have been linked in a study, but no evidence of a link between the two has been found.
Secondary bacterial infection is the greatest health concern for us. Scratching the skin would cause bedbugs to appear. If the skin is broken, normal bacteria from the surface is able to enter deeper due to scratching.
As a result, the human host, not the bedbug, is the source of any bacterial infection.