It goes without saying that finding even one bed bug in your home is reason for concern. Even while you might not believe a single tiny bug is a significant concern, it can be an indication that an infestation is rapidly spreading right under your nose.
Why a Few Bed Bugs Pose a Risk
It’s possible that only a few hitchhikers made it inside your home by clinging to a piece of luggage brought back from a hotel, a ride share or a guest’s clothing, but if you find one, there are likely more. Because of their social nature, bed bugs tend to congregate in huge numbers.
There’s especially cause for concern if there are any female bed bugs—if one is pregnant, it will start laying eggs rapidly and then reproduce with its offspring. A single female can lay 500 eggs in her lifetime. Male bed bugs have pointed abdomens, whereas females have round abdomens.
Because bed bugs are only 7 millimeters long at their longest, this distinction may be difficult for some to see.
Why Are Bed Bugs Difficult to Spot
Bed bugs are challenging to find for a variety of factors. Before they gorge themselves on the blood of human and animal hosts, their bodies are slim. The body is shaped like an apple seed and has a reddish-brown tint that blends well with dark baseboards, furniture, and flooring.
Bed bugs prefer to feed when you are at your most vulnerable, which is while you are sleeping. Typically, when a bed bug bites someone, they do not notice it. In fact, the bite is so insignificant that nobody would likely be awakened by it. The way that a bed bug bite affects a person’s body varies. While some people may have a slight allergic reaction, others might not.
How to Determine if It Is a Bed Bug
Before you jump to conclusions, it’s a good idea to confirm that what you’ve found or the bites your waking up with is really from a bed bug. Bed bugs are oval-shaped, reddish-brown, and 5-7 millimeters long, with six legs and small, segmented antennae.
Cockroach nymphs, carpet beetles, and fleas are all common pests that people misidentify as bed bugs. Even bites in similar locations on the body can look similar. Therefore. It is critical to understand additional potential bed bug warning signs.
Signs That You Have Bed Bugs
There are a few telltale indicators that you may have a bed bug infestation that is larger than simply one bug.
- Blood stains—Are mostly small, dark red, and roundish or smeared. Blood stains from bed bugs occur during feeding and are most commonly found near the foot of the bed or on your pillowcase.
- Exoskeletons—Bed bugs resemble their molted skins. They look alike and are translucent. Nonetheless, they resemble bed bug shells. The bed bug that molted will determine their size.
- Eggs—Resembles a grain of rice but smaller. Most are pearly white-grey with a 1 millimeter-long oval form. A hinged cap at the front of each egg opens to release a bed bug nymph.
- Egg casings— translucent, hollow shapes of juvenile bed bugs. Are typically simpler to find than the bugs themselves.
- Fecal matter—These fecal spots are black in color (not red because the blood has already been digested) and are often seen in clusters.
- Bite marks—If you’re allergic to bed bugs, you’ll likely have marks on your face, neck, arms, and hands. Usually small, flat or elevated spots that may become irritated, itchy, red, or blistered and tend to leave straight rows of bites.
- Musty, sweet berry like odor—This unpleasant, moldy smell comes from bed bugs’ scent glands. It often takes a large infestation to detect this bed bug smell.
How to Spot Bed Bugs
If you want to look for more indicators of bed bug activity before calling in the pros, you should begin by moving your bed away from the walls. There is a reason why they are called bed bugs. They tend to congregate in your bed frame, mattress, box spring, and linen because they enjoy living close to their food source.
Turn pillows and comforters inside out and remove all bedding. Examine each and every fold and crease. Your mattress and box spring are excellent bed insect harborages, especially the piping along the edges of your mattress. Check both sides of your mattress by flipping it over. You will need to carefully disassemble your bed frame and inspect each joint individually.
Calling the Professionals
There are a few steps you can take from here, such as thoroughly washing your linens and drying them on the highest heat setting possible, and purchasing zippered mattress and box spring encasements. However, your next step should be to contact a professional pest control company.
Following a thorough inspection, ECO will devise a targeted, tailored plan to eliminate all bed bugs—eggs, visible ones, and any that may be hiding.