Because bed bug bites affect everyone differently, some people may have no reaction and will not develop bite marks or any other visible signs of being bitten. Other people may be allergic to the bed bugs and can react adversely to the bites. These allergic symptoms can include enlarged bite marks, painful swellings at the bite site, and, on rare occasions, anaphylaxis.  So, why exactly do some people say bed bugs seemingly bite one person over the other?

Characteristics of Bed Bug Bites

Since bed bugs usually attack their victims during the night, it will most likely happen when you are sleeping in your bed. Which means the parts of your body that are usually exposed during the nighttime are the most vulnerable to their bites. Most cases of bed bug bites show up in a small area clustered together. The cluster of bites may also form a line pattern on your skin. The bites usually cause a burning and itching sensation and appear to have a reddish presence to them. There can also be signs of small blood stains on your bed sheets that alerts you with the presence of bed bugs. 

Do Bed Bug Bites Typically Swell?

Bed bug bites form red, swollen areas with dark red centers. These marks are a reaction to the saliva used by the bug to numb the area while feeding. An allergic reaction to bed bug bites could increase swelling or cause hives near the surrounding area, mostly from excessive scratching.  Most bites will heal within one to two weeks of appearing and not cause any long-term problems. Those with stronger sensitivities to insect bites may take up to three weeks or longer to heal.

Is There a Blood Type Preference?

You may have fewer or more bed bug bites on your body than your spouse or a roomate due to your blood. These pests prefer a certain blood type and get it where it is available. They prefer blood that they’ve been accustomed to. For instance, bed bugs that grew up drinking O+ blood will feed on O+ blood in the future. If they grew up feeding on AB+ blood, they would prefer people with this blood as well.

This means that bed bugs don’t have a preference for a single type. They can drink any blood. It only depends on their taste. This is probably why bed bugs often target you and you don’t see any bites on your spouse or a roommate.

Is it Bed Bug Bites or Something Else?

There are many other insects (not to mention the many other non-insect related causes) that leave similar markings on a human’s body.”  A rash can be concerning, of course, but just because you noticed it first thing in the morning or it looks a bit like what you think a bed bug situation might, that doesn’t necessarily mean that that’s what is happening. Talking to your doctor or a dermatologist or hiring a pest control company to come out and take a look can help you figure out what you’re really dealing with — and help you get to a place of resolution much sooner, whether you do really have bedbugs or not.

If you need an professional opinion feel free to contact us at (202) 709-7490.

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