ABOUT BED BUGS
When someone wakes up with a line of red, itchy bites, they may not recognize that they have a bed bug infestation. These bites frequently are confused with bites from other insects or are mistaken for a rash.
However, when waking up with insect bites becomes a normal occurrence, then it is time to consider bed bug control. Such infestations are becoming increasingly common, and there are no reliable DIY methods for getting rid of them.
Instead, home and business owners are encouraged to hire a reputable pest management company to deal with the problem. These well-trained professionals have treatment methods at their disposal that are much more reliable and powerful than any DIY technique. Thanks to their expertise, it is possible to put an end to bed bug infestations.
One of the reasons why a bed bug infestation can be difficult for the average person to detect is the size of the insect. When it has been a while since a bed bug ate, then they may measure just five or six millimeters. Moreover, their bodies are quite flat, which means that they can hide in small cracks and crevices.
Those oval-shaped bodies appear flattened when the bed bug has gone without a meal for some time. Feeding causes a remarkable change in the insect's appearance. Its body shape becomes rounder, and their brown color changes to a reddish hue. They even grow somewhat larger, measuring up to 10 millimeters.
A bed bug is an insect, which means that it has six legs. However, many people are surprised to learn that this insect does not have wings and must walk wherever it goes.
Bed bugs rely on a mammalian host to obtain nutrition. Blood meals are taken from the host at night, and humans appear to be preferred hosts. However, bed bugs are known to feed on pets when human hosts are not available. Bed bugs typically emerge every three to four days to feed, but they are capable of surviving for several months between meals, which means that an infestation may persist even when a location is uninhabited by people for an extended period.
Thanks to their small size and flattish bodies, bed bugs are adept at hiding in small spaces. They are capable of fitting into any crack into which a credit card could be slipped, and this means that a typical bedroom provides a multitude of hiding places.
Bed bugs are averse to light, so they prefer to hide in a spot that receives no or very limited daylight. Additionally, they prefer to be close to their food source. This leads them to conceal themselves in the seams of mattresses and box springs or in the cracks of a bed frame. Headboards and footboards also are common places to hide.
Large infestations force bed bugs to hide in areas that are adjacent to the bed. Common habitats include nightstands, lamps and chairs that are placed close to beds. Bed bugs may be discovered behind light switch plates, baseboards and window frames as well.
PROBLEMS WITH BED BUGS
It is important not to understate the psychological and emotional impacts that arise during a bed bug infestation. Many people are horrified by the idea that a tiny, blood-eating insect is dining on them while they sleep. The result frequently is an inability to relax, let alone sleep, in the bedroom or elsewhere in the home.
Loss of sleep is a critical problem as it affects every aspect of the family's life. Tempers are short, everyone feels under pressure and it is difficult to carry on as usual. Days at work or school may be missed as the family deals with the problem.
In some cases, it is necessary for the occupants to vacate the infested property. This may only be required for a few hours, but in extreme situations, the family may feel more comfortable staying elsewhere for a few days. Clearly, this represents a great deal of inconvenience and expense.
It also important to know that bed bugs can damage or totally ruin bedding, pajamas and mattresses with spots of blood and waste. Additionally, bed bugs have been found to deposit their waste in small cracks and crevices that can prove difficult to clean.
Bed bugs are extremely well adapted for survival. As they are light averse, they tend to hide during the daylight hours. This means that it is relatively rare for bed bugs to be seen when people are most likely to be awake.
The heat and carbon dioxide that people emit as they sleep attracts the interest of bed bugs. Using their uniquely honed senses, bed bugs use heat and carbon dioxide to guide them to their next meal. Bed bugs attach themselves to their host as they eat, then disengage and return to their hiding place.
Regular blood meals are required for bed bug reproduction. When meals are routinely available, the insect population is capable of explosive growth. Keeping this many individuals fed means that people in the infested bedroom are likely to wake up with several bites each morning.
Moreover, as the infestation grows, the bed bugs may be forced to establish themselves in adjacent bedrooms. This means that what may have begun as an infestation in one room soon can become a problem for the entire household.
Bed bugs are not known to transmit any illnesses to people through their bites. However, some individuals still may experience medical complications as a result of an infestation.
While many people have no reaction to bed bug bites, others have an allergic reaction that is impossible to ignore. Symptoms may include extreme itchiness as well as red, flaking skin. People who suffer a more severe reaction may be troubled by breathing problems like congestion. Over-the-counter treatments like medicated creams for itching and antihistamines for congestion generally can ease these symptoms.
Rare individuals are prone to a severe allergic reaction that at its most extreme may require hospitalization. An all-over rash, hives and relentless breathing difficulties are the most common signs of this reaction.
SIGNS OF A BED BUG INFESTATION
A bed bug infestation is indicated by these signs:
• Being routinely plagued by red, itchy bites in the morning
• Red blood stains on pajamas or bedding
• Brown stains from bed bug waste products on mattresses and bedding
• Shed yellow skins from bed bug nymphs anywhere in the home
• Visual sightings of living or dead bed bugs
To help prevent bed bug problems the following steps should be taken:
• Enclose mattresses and box springs in protective coverings
• Make a habit of frequent laundering of bedding
• Vacuum the surface of the mattress
• Vacuum and mop floors to get rid of insects, larvae and eggs
• Eliminate clutter, especially in bedrooms
• Comprehensively inspect all secondhand items before bringing them home
• Examine all luggage and purses when returning from vacation
• Be on the lookout for signs of bed bugs in shared laundry facilities
• Check hotel rooms for bed bugs before settling in
BED BUG CONTROL
There are a number of different methods and techniques for DIY bed bug removal. However, such do-it-yourself treatments rarely, if ever, prove either successful or permanent. That is why it is important to call a professional pest control company.
SafeGuard Pest Control, LLC. has been providing area homeowners and business owners with quality, long-lasting pest control extermination services for nearly 30 years. And as a licensed pest control provider, we have the products, tools, and experience to eradicate any type of bed bug infestation.
We provide clients with a 100% guarantee and follow up visits to ensure peace of mind and complete bed bug eradication.
BED BUG INSPECTION
If you suspect you may have a bed bug problem, call us. We will conduct a FREE professional inspection of your home or business within a 10-mile radius of our office, searching for all of the known tell-tale signs of a bed bug problem, in all of the areas that could harbor bed bugs and bed bug eggs.
In the event bed bugs are discovered, we will discuss our findings with you and explain the best treatment options for your situation.