Bedbugs are tiny insects that feed on human blood. They hide in dark places close to where humans sleep and usually crawl out to feed while people are fast asleep.
Bedbugs can be a problem in the cleanest of homes. These insects need only human blood to survive, so having an immaculate home will not keep them away. And it’s easy to bring bedbugs home. They can crawl into luggage, clothing, and even furniture, unnoticed.
Once inside your home, bedbugs will find a hiding place. Favorite hiding places include a mattress, box spring, headboard, couch, and tiny cracks and crevices.You rarely see bedbugs during the day.
Having bedbugs can cause a great deal of anxiety and some restless nights. Most people want to get rid of bedbugs as soon as possible, so they buy bug sprays and foggers. These will not get rid of bedbugs.
Leaving your home for a few weeks will not get rid of bedbugs. Although these insects need human blood to survive, they can live for a year or longer without blood. During this time, they remain in hiding.
Getting rid of bedbugs can be difficult. Most people need the help of a pest-control company. Make sure the company has experience eliminating bedbugs. Several treatments may be necessary to get rid of bedbugs completely. You also will need to follow the guidelines that your pest-management professional recommends.
If you have many bites or a bite looks infected, you should see a dermatologist. A dermatologist can treat an infection and help relieve the itch.
Having bite marks on your body is the most common sign of bedbugs. Most people are bitten while they sleep and do not know that they have been bitten until the next day when they notice one or more of the following:
The first time you are bitten, the bites may not itch right away. It can take time for your body to develop a reaction to the bites. Some people develop itchy welts within a few days of the first bites, but it can take as long as 14 days before the bites itch.
If you have blisters, a fever, or trouble breathing, seek immediate medical care.
People tend to become increasingly sensitive to bedbug bites. If you have a bedbug infestation and the bugs bite repeatedly, you may get itchy welts within seconds.
You will not see bedbugs living on your body. Unlike lice and the mites that cause scabies, bedbugs do not live on humans. Bedbugs come out of hiding to feed on human blood. Feeding lasts about 4 to 12 minutes. After a bedbug feeds, it returns to its hiding place.
Although less common, it is possible to develop a serious or even life-threatening reaction to bedbug bites. These reactions include:
Serious reactions require immediate medical care.
Anyone can get bedbugs. An infestation can happen even if your home is spotless. Getting bedbugs has nothing to do with good hygiene and housekeeping.
People get bedbugs when they bring bedbugs home with them. It’s easy to do, and you probably won’t notice until you get a few bedbug bites. The bugs can crawl into luggage, clothing, and onto other personal items without anyone noticing.
Places that can have bedbug infestations include:
You also can bring bedbugs into your home in a secondhand mattress or other piece of used furniture.
Bringing home just a few bedbugs can quickly turn into an infestation because: