How to Identify if Bed Bugs Have Invaded Your Bed
Bed bugs are blood sucking insects that cause red itchy welts that are often misdiagnosed as mosquito, bee stings or ant bites, often resulting in the spread of further infestation and growth of these home invaders. Identifying a bed bug infestation is often hard to determine due to their small size and nocturnal activities.
These pests are no larger than 1/5th of an inch at maturity, are oval in shape with small heads and expansive widths. Mature bed bugs are brownish red, or mahogany in color, while newly hatched bed bugs are white. Infestation of these pestswere once attributed to overcrowding and run down housing. Yet, their rampant resurgence in urban areas and their presence in your home may be due to increased human travel. Bed bugs are often picked up through close human contact in trains or cars, and can be carried into your home by hanging onto your clothing or by hiding in your luggage.
Information on How Bed Bugs Spread and Feed
Once inside your home they can then hide anywhere, such as in mattresses, box springs, couch upholstery, cracks in the walls or in wooden furniture. After establishing themselves in a home, several generations can live within a single area while female bed bugs can reproduce up to 50 eggs at a time. A temperature of 70 to mid-80 degrees Fahrenheit and lots of blood for nourishment effectively means that your home provides the optimal conditions needed in order for new eggs to mature. These conditions will cause infestation to grow at a higher rate causing the life cycle of an egg to grow into a mature bed bug to decrease from 4 months to only 5 weeks. Though these pests need food to survive and mature a fully matured bed bug can last anywhere from 80 days to 550 days without a single drop of blood, therefore a home owner cannot realistically starve out their pest problem.
To identify if you have an infestation it is recommended that you check your body for raised skin that will be small and round in shape that itches, and often only show up after a night’s sleep. If you are unable to determine if a bite is due to a bed bug or another biting insect then another indicator are the appearance of exoskeletons that mature bed bugs leave behind after molting. These can appear in the carpet, between the sheets, under the bed or around potential sleeping areas. Additional evidence can be found on sheets where family members generally sleep. Such evidence will include small blood spots, and will leave behind disgusting fecal stains that are reddish brown in color, small in size and smell.
Bed Bugs Can Cause Health Problems
Though bed bugs are not known to cause diseases, they can cause other health problems. Oftentimes after scratching, these bug bites can become infected if not treated properly. Other conditions that may be a result of a bite includes impetigo which are blisters filled with pus, ecthymawhich is much like impetigo but occurs under the skin, and lymphanigitis or acute streptococcal infection of the skin. Much like a bee sting to those who are allergic, a bed bug bite may cause anaphylaxis, or an allergic reaction that will manifest itself through stomach pains, rashes, difficulty breathing and swallowing. Infestation of these bugs can even cause more than just physical health problems, but also mental health problems such as anxiety and insomnia.
Don’t hesitate to call CANTU right now at 972-562-9999 (Dallas, Fort Worth) or 713-956-7822 (Houston) to schedule an appointment if you believe that you may have a bed bug problem. CANTU can give you back a good night’s sleep, and peace of mind.