Bed Bugs Bite How To Cure
Bed bugs: Six cheap and natural solutions to treat itchy bites at home
BED BUG bites can be extremely irritating, especially if you have a serious infestation and lots of bites, but there are ways to deal with them. David Cross, head of Technical Training at Rentokil Pest Control outlines six ways to treat the itch.
Bed bugs are small insects that live in the cracks and crevices in and around beds, and the recent heatwave has caused a reported increase in their numbers in the UK.
They crawl out at night and bite exposed skin, leaving small, red lumps. Bites can appear from a few minutes after being bitten up to a week or two later, according to the NHS.
Although bed bug bites are painless, they can be very itchy and irritating.
“Bedbugs aren’t dangerous and don’t spread any diseases, but some people experience a reaction to their bites and they can be stressful to live with,” the NHS said.
There are many natural remedies and ‘old wives tales’ on what you can use to help reduce the inflammation and itching associated with bed bug bites
David Cross, Rentokil Pest Control
So what’s the most effective method of treating bed bug bites?
“There are many natural remedies and ‘old wives tales’ on what you can use to help reduce the inflammation and itching associated with bed bug bites,” said Rentokil’s David Cross.
According to Cross, there are six treatments to try, which should be applied after washing the bites with soap and water, before drying them.
This relieves itching and also helps to dry rashes and protect the skin.
Baking soda and water
Make a paste with baking soda and water, and apply it directly to the skin. Let it dry before wiping away with a cotton pad.
Bed bug bites are painless but can be itchy and irritating (Image: Getty Images)
The menthol contained in toothpaste is said to be a good anti-itch remedy. Apply a generous amount to the bite to soothe the burning sensation and relieve the itching.
This provides a mild anaesthetic effect that helps to calm the itching caused by bites.
Both “fresh” Aloe Vera or gel works well against insect bites. The active substances and amino acids present in Aloe Vera help relieve itching and burning sensations.
This has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It is also a natural astringent. Lemon juice can help dry rashes and itchiness while reducing redness and swelling.
As bed bugs are small and only come out at night, they can be difficult to spot and it is therefore not always easy to identify if you have an infestation.
Bed bug bites usually fade in a few days, but there are ways to treat the itch (Image: Getty Images)
Bed bugs often bite in lines or clusters on the skin (Image: Getty Images)
Bed bugs: How to spot them and how to get rid of them
Bed bugs: What are bed bugs? How to spot an infestation and how to get rid of them.
Bed bugs: How to spot them and how to get rid of them
However, one thing which distinguishes them from other biting insects is the pattern in which they bite.
Because they are crawling insects, as opposed to flying insects such as mosquitoes, bed bugs often bite in lines or clusters across the skin.
Bed bug bites also usually occur on exposed areas such as the face, neck, hands or arms.
In more severe cases, bed bug bites may cause a rash or fluid-filled blisters. They can also become infected with bacteria if scratched.
According to the NHS: “The bites usually fade in a few days. If they’re very itchy, you can buy a mild steroid cream (such as hydrocortisone) or antihistamine tablets to relieve the itch.”
“See your GP if you develop signs of a skin infection, including pain, redness and swelling, as you may need antibiotics,” the NHS said.
In this Article
In this Article
In this Article
Bedbugs are small, oval, brownish insects that live on the blood of animals or humans. Adult bedbugs have flat bodies about the size of an apple seed. After feeding, however, their bodies swell and are a reddish color.
Bedbugs do not fly, but they can move quickly over floors, walls, and ceilings. Female bedbugs may lay hundreds of eggs, each of which is about the size of a speck of dust, over a lifetime.
Immature bedbugs, called nymphs, shed their skins five times before reaching maturity and require a meal of blood before each shedding. Under favorable conditions the bugs can develop fully in as little as a month and produce three or more generations per year.
Although they are a nuisance, they are not thought to transmit diseases.
Where Bed Bugs Hide
Bedbugs may enter your home undetected through luggage, clothing, used beds and couches, and other items. Their flattened bodies make it possible for them to fit into tiny spaces, about the width of a credit card. Bedbugs do not have nests like ants or bees, but tend to live in groups in hiding places. Their initial hiding places are typically in mattresses, box springs, bed frames, and headboards where they have easy access to people to bite in the night.
Over time, however, they may scatter through the bedroom, moving into any crevice or protected location. They may also spread to nearby rooms or apartments.
Because bedbugs live solely on blood, having them in your home is not a sign of dirtiness. You are as likely to find them in immaculate homes and hotel rooms as in filthy ones.
When Bedbugs Bite
Bedbugs are active mainly at night and usually bite people while they are sleeping. They feed by piercing the skin and withdrawing blood through an elongated beak. The bugs feed from three to 10 minutes to become engorged and then crawl away unnoticed.
Most bedbug bites are painless at first, but later turn into itchy welts. Unlike flea bites that are mainly around the ankles, bedbug bites are on any area of skin exposed while sleeping. Also, the bites do not have a red spot in the center like flea bites do.
People who don’t realize they have a bedbug infestation may attribute the itching and welts to other causes, such as mosquitoes. To confirm bedbug bites, you must find and identify the bugs themselves.
Signs of Infestation
If you wake up with itchy areas you didn’t have when you went to sleep, you may have bedbugs, particularly if you got a used bed or other used furniture around the time the bites started. Other signs that you have bedbugs include:
- Blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases
- Dark or rusty spots of bedbug excrement on sheets and mattresses, bed clothes, and walls
- Bedbug fecal spots, egg shells, or shed skins in areas where bedbugs hide
- An offensive, musty odor from the bugs’ scent glands
If you suspect an infestation, remove all bedding and check it carefully for signs of the bugs or their excrement. Remove the dust cover over the bottom of the box springs and examine the seams in the wood framing. Peel back the fabric where it is stapled to the wood frame.
Also, check the area around the bed, including inside books, telephones or radios, the edge of the carpet, and even in electrical outlets. Check your closet, because bedbugs can attach to clothing. If you are uncertain about signs of bedbugs, call an exterminator, who will know what to look for.
If you find signs of infestation, begin steps to get rid of the bugs and prevent their return.
Getting rid of bedbugs begins with cleaning up the places where bedbugs live. This should include the following:
- Clean bedding, linens, curtains, and clothing in hot water and dry them on the highest dryer setting. Place stuffed animals, shoes, and other items that can’t be washed in the dryer and run on high for 30 minutes.
- Use a stiff brush to scrub mattress seams to remove bedbugs and their eggs before vacuuming.
- Vacuum your bed and surrounding area frequently. After vacuuming, immediately place the vacuum cleaner bag in a plastic bag and place in garbage can outdoors.
- Encase mattress and box springs with a tightly woven, zippered cover to keep bedbugs from entering or escaping. Bedbugs may live up to a year without feeding, so keep the cover on your mattress for at least a year to make sure all bugs in the mattress are dead.
- Repair cracks in plaster and glue down peeling wallpaper to get rid of places bedbugs can hide.
- Get rid of clutter around the bed.
If your mattress is infested, you may want to get rid of it and get a new one, but take care to rid the rest of your home of bedbugs or they will infest your new mattress.
While cleaning up infested areas will be helpful in controlling bedbugs, getting rid of them usually requires chemical treatments. Because treating your bed and bedroom with insecticides can be harmful, it is important to use products that can be used safely in bedrooms. Do not treat mattresses and bedding unless the label specifically says you can use them on bedding.
Generally it is safest and most effective to hire an experienced pest control professional for bedbug extermination.
University of Kentucky College of Agriculture: "Bed Bugs."
Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet: "Bed Bugs."
The New York City Department of Heath and Mental Hygiene: "Stop Bed Bugs Safely."
University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension Lancaster County: "Managing Bed Bugs."
How to Get Rid of Bed Bug Bites: The Most Effective Home Remedies
“Don’t let the bed bugs bite” is a common phrase that people say before going to bed. Unfortunately, if you have bed bugs, good wishes aren’t enough to get rid of these little biting critters for good. Bed bug bites can cause itchy red clusters of bumps on your skin which are also called bed bug rashes. This severe itching creates a strong urge to scratch and is very frustrating. You may even lose sleep scratching through the night and worrying about the bugs in your bed.
Getting rid of bed bug bites can be very effective with home remedies. Many home remedies help to treat the itchy bites that these nasty bugs cause and also help to reduce skin irritation, reduce redness and swelling as well as prevent infection. Some natural remedies for treating bed bug bites like apple cider vinegar, witch hazel, and oatmeal reduce itching and swelling around the affected skin area. Other remedies include coconut oil, tea tree oil, or aloe vera to soothe the itchy skin and the inflammation around the bed bug rash.
Before learning about the best home remedies for treating bed bug bites, let’s look at the signs and symptoms of bed bug bites.
Signs and Symptoms of Bed Bug Bites
Bed bugs are tiny parasitic insects that range in size from 1mm to 7mm. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, these little pests feed on the blood of humans and animals. 1 The bite from a bed bug can cause a bed bug rash which is an allergic reaction that makes the surrounding area inflamed, red, and itchy. Sometimes bed bug bites are confused with flea bites. Flea bites on humans occur at any time you are around the house, bed bugs are mostly active when it’s dark, so you will be bitten while you are asleep.
Dr. Varnada Karriem-Norwood on WebMD says that the red, itchy bites usually occur on the arms or shoulders, but they can also be on the face and be a reason for itchy hands. The red bumps on the skin tend to be in straight rows, although they can be in clusters. Although bed bugs don’t carry disease, scratching the skin irritation can lead to secondary skin infections. 2
How Long Do Bed Bug Bites Last?
Bed bug rash or bite marks may appear several hours or even several days after the bite has occurred. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that it may even take up to 2 weeks for bed bug rash and bite marks to become itchy, inflamed spots, depending upon the person’s allergic reaction to the bites.
Usually bed bug rash or bites last several days and then slowly fade, but in some cases they can last longer if the bitten person is more sensitive to the bites. Some people may not have any reaction at all, while others who are more sensitive can develop bite marks or rashes that cause severe itching.
What are the Signs of Bed Bugs?
You can spot bed bug signs by carefully examining your bed linen. Some of the telltale signs of bed bugs are exoskeletons left behind after molting, tiny blood spots on your mattress or bed sheets, and a sweet musty odor. 1
Doctors from the Mayo Clinic recommend checking in the cracks and crevices of beds, headboards, bed frames, and in the seams of mattresses. 3 Generally, bed bugs live within 8 feet of sleeping areas.
To eliminate bed bug infestation, please read my article about the top 10 home remedies to get rid of bed bugs naturally. You’ll discover effective bed bug treatments and detailed instructions how to use them.
Home Remedies to Get Rid of Bed Bug Bites
To get rid of bed bug bites, it’s important to reduce the itching and inflammation. This will prevent you from scratching the itchy bumps and rashes that the bed bug bites cause.
The simplest way to stop bed bug bites itching fast is to apply a cold compress to soothe the red bed bug rash. The effect of cold helps to calm the nerve endings and take the itch out of the bite.
Many doctors recommend a cold compress to reduce pain and redness of a bed bug bite. Dr. Charles Patrick Davis on eMedicineHealth says to first of all wash the affected skin area. Then place a cold pack or ice wrapped in a towel on the affected skin area. 4 Leave on for around 10 minutes. Use the cold compress as needed to relieve the itchy skin and reduce redness causes by bed bug bites.
Apple cider vinegar
Raw apple cider vinegar (ACV) is a great natural remedy to make bed bug bite go away because its acidic properties relieve itching and redness. ACV contains acetic acid which is a natural anti-inflammatory and also acts as an antiseptic. Applying apple cider vinegar to bug bites can also help to prevent any secondary skin infection.
Scientists have found that topical applications that have a low pH level (acidic) help to relieve pruritus (skin itching). 5 Apple cider vinegar has the effect of balancing the skin’s pH level which is higher when inflamed.
The journalPLoS Onealso found that acetic acid protects the skin from bacterial infections and speeds up the healing process. 6
To use apple cider vinegar to relieve the irritation caused by bed bug bites, please do the following:
- Dilute raw ACV with equal parts of water.
- Using a cotton ball, apply the vinegar remedy to the itchy bed bug bites.
- Leave to dry before rinsing off with warm water.
- Apply 2-3 times a day for quick relief from itchiness and to reduce redness.
Washing your face with apple cider vinegar is another reason to use ACV to quickly cure bed bug bites around your nose and cheeks.
Another great and easy home remedy to alleviate the discomfort caused by bed bug bites is to apply lemon juice. Because of its citric acid content, lemon juice has medicinal properties that work similar to apple cider vinegar in relieving itchy skin.
To get fast relief from bed bug bites, dip a cotton ball in lemon juice and apply to the itchy bed bug rash. Repeat the process 2 or 3 times a day to stop the bites itching.
Use the natural astringent properties of witch hazel to dry out bed bug rashes quickly and reduce the urge to scratch. Witch hazel contains tannins which not only help get rid of itching caused by bed bug bites but also have antibacterial properties that prevent infections. Witch hazel is also one of the best home remedies to get rid of flea bites.
Doctors on WebMD say that witch hazel is applied directly to the skin to reduce itching, pain, and swelling caused by insect bites as well as mite bites. 7 Studies into the anti-inflammatory effects of witch hazel found that the astringent properties help to reduce skin inflammation and improve its appearance. 8
To soothe an itchy bed bug bite, you can apply witch hazel directly to the affected skin area. This is what you should do:
- Dip a cotton ball in witch hazel and place on the itchy skin bump.
- Hold the witch hazel compress for around 10 minutes to relieve the discomfort and reduce swelling.
- If you have a cluster of bed bug bites, then you can apply witch hazel by gently rubbing the mixture over the bed bug rash.
- Repeat a couple of times each day to get relief from itching and burning and to help the healing process of the bed bug bite.
Baking soda is a natural antibacterial agent that can help dry out inflamed skin rashes and help to cure bed bug bites. Baking soda is also anti-inflammatory and will reduce the itchy sensation from the bed bug rash on your skin.
Doctors recommend using baking soda to soothe the redness, itching, and stinging that are caused by a mild reaction to an insect bite such as bed bug bite. 9 A study into the antibacterial activities of baking soda found that it is also effective against a number of strains of bacteria. 10
Make a home remedy for getting rid of bed bug bites by combining some water with baking soda. Here is how to make your anti-itch paste:
- Mix a little water with a tablespoon of baking soda to form a thick paste.
- Apply the remedy to your bed bug bites and leave for 15 minutes.
- Rinse off with warm water.
- Use twice a day until the symptoms of bed bug bites have gone for good.
The baking soda treatment will help to protect the bed bug rash on your skin from becoming infected with germs. When combined with other ingredients, baking soda can help you get gorgeous, healthy-looking skin.
Pure aloe vera gel will help to get rid of the itch from an insect or bed bug bite. Aloe vera is rich in soothing properties that reduce inflammation and nourish your skin. To relieve skin itching, you can use aloe vera in its pure form straight from the plant leaf or you can buy pure aloe vera gel.
Aloe vera is known for its healing effect on the skin. In a study published in the journalSkin Pharmacology and Physiologyon the anti-inflammatory properties of aloe vera, it was found to be more effective at reducing skin irritation than 1% hydrocortisone gel. 11 Hydrocortisone creams are often prescribed for insect bites.
It is very easy to use pure aloe vera gel to heal bed bug bites. All you have to do is apply the aloe vera gel liberally to the affected skin area a few times a day. The soothing effect of aloe vera on the skin will quickly get rid of itching and help to protect your skin.
Oatmeal is a natural remedy for skin inflammation and will soothe bed bug bites and other insect bites. The anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and cleansing effect of oatmeal quickly reduces irritation, itching, redness, and swelling associated with painful bites.
A study published in theJournal of Drugs and Dermatologyfound that applying a topical treatment of colloidal oatmeal (ground oatmeal) helped reduce itching, skin rashes, burns, and eczema. 12 In fact, colloidal oatmeal is registered at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to “provide temporary relief of itching and irritation caused by insect bites.” 13
To get rid of bed bug bites with oatmeal, here is an effective home remedy:
- Grind a cup of oatmeal into a fine powder.
- Add enough plain yogurt to create a smooth paste.
- Apply the oatmeal remedy to the itchy bed bug rash on your skin for fast relief.
- Leave for 20-30 minutes before rinsing off with warm water.
- Repeat the process 2-3 times a day until all itchiness and redness have gone from your skin.
You can also add some honey to the oatmeal anti-itch remedy to help boost its antibacterial potential.
Oatmeal is so effective at getting rid of any kind of skin irritation, you can use it in a warm bath as a home remedy to stop itching all over your body.
Honey, especially Manuka honey, contains powerful medicinal properties that can soothe an itch and heal bacterial skin infections. A dab of raw honey on the bed bug bite may be all you need to soothe the irritation. Honey should also be applied to insect bites to help prevent secondary skin infections developing.
The Mayo Clinic reports that there is some evidence that honey can be used as a topical itch treatment and it can help form a protective barrier on the skin. 14 Studies have shown that honey can help reduce scalp itching and prevent infections. 15
All you have to do to relieve itching from a bed bug bite and speed up the healing process is apply a little honey to the itchy spot. You can repeat as necessary throughout the day whenever you feel the urge to scratch the bed bug rash.
Another natural remedy to cure bed bug bites and soothe the discomfort they cause is to put some slices of cucumber on the itch. Cucumber is especially soothing on the bed bug rash if you take it straight out the refrigerator before applying it.
A medical study found that cucumbers have anti-inflammatory activities and help to inhibit inflammatory enzymes like COX-2. Cucumbers are also rich in vitamin C, E, and A – all of which are essential for keeping skin healthy. 16
Place slices of cooled cucumber directly on the bed bug rash to ease pain, reduce inflammation, and quickly stop the itch. Use as necessary every time the insect bite starts itching.
Cool tea bag
Relieving the discomfort of bed bug bites is one great way to use your old tea bags. There are various types of tea that you can use to soothe a painful itchy bite.
Black teacontains tannins which act as an astringent on the skin to reduce itching. TheJournal of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistrysays that the tannins are released when the black tea is put in hot water. The journal reports that tannins can be used to heal the skin and form a protective layer over tissue. 17
Chamomile teahas a soothing effect on the skin as well as the mind. Studies into the anti-inflammatory and protective properties of chamomile show that it’s a great herb to relieve itching and inflammation and speed up the healing process of skin infections. Chamomile tea has been shown to be more effective than 1% hydrocortisone creams and is safe for long-term use. 18
To use black tea bags or chamomile tea bags, you should place one teabag in a cup of hot water. Leave to infuse for a few minutes. Place the tea bag in the refrigerator to cool is down. Use as a cold compress on the itchy bed bug bite to get rid of the irritation and to get a quick itch relief.
You can also use the essential oil of chamomile to relieve itching. The University of Maryland recommends putting 5 to 10 drops of chamomile oil in a warm bath to soothe bed bug bites. 19
Essential Oils to Get Rid of Bed Bug Bites
There are many other essential oils for skincare that are excellent home remedies to reduce swelling and redness and prevent itching caused by bed bug bites.
Apart from tea tree oil and lavender oil, which can be applied directly as a spot treatment, essential oils should always be diluted before using on the skin. Coconut oil is a great carrier oil to use to reduce itching and prevent skin infections.
Coconut oil has many beneficial medicinal properties. The journalPharmaceutical Biologyreported that coconut oil reduces inflammation and eases pain. 20 Read more about the 10 secret ways to use coconut oil on your skin.
When using essential oils with coconut oil on your skin, you should add 2-3 drops of essential oil in 1 tablespoon of coconut oil.
Tea tree oil for bed bug bites
The journalClinical Microbiology Reviewsreported on studies showing that tea tree oil shows anti-inflammatory and antibacterial activities. It can be added to coconut oil to help heal bed bug bites speedily and kill off any germs that may cause infection. 21
If you have just one or two itchy bed bug bites, you can put a drop of tea tree oil directly on the spot to get instant itch relief. If however you have a sensitive skin or need to apply it on a larger skin area, mix a few drops of tea tree oil in a tablespoon of coconut oil and apply to the bed bug bites to reduce skin irritation and inflammation.
Using tea tree oil is also good for treating spider bites and cockroaches bites.
Tea tree oil is also one of the ingredients in my effective bed bug spray.
Lavender oil for bed bug bites
A study from 2015 found that lavender essential oil contains antioxidant, pain relieving, and anti-inflammatory properties. Lavender oil was just as effective as dexamethasone, a pharmaceutical drug that is sometimes prescribed to relieve allergic reactions and reduce swelling. 22
Another study found that lavender oil helped to reduce allergic skin reactions when used topically. 23
Like tea tree oil, you can dab a drop of lavender oil directly onto a small itchy bed bug bite. For larger bed bug rash area, you should mix lavender oil with coconut oil to make a topical anti-itch cream.
Calendula oil for bed bug bites
The University of Maryland reports that calendula oil is an effective treatment for itchy skin inflammation. 24 You can use a few drops of calendula oil mixed with coconut oil. Or you can buy a calendula cream to relieve itchiness from bed bug bites.
Bed Bug Bites – When to See a Doctor
Usually, home remedies quickly and effectively heal bed bug bites and all your symptoms should be gone within a week.
However, doctors from the Mayo Clinic 25 advise that you should see a doctor if you have a severe allergic reaction to the bed bugs or if the rashes caused by the bites start to blister.
How to Treat a Bed Bug Rash
How Does an Individual Get a Bed Bug Bite Rash?
Bed bugs commonly infest summer cabins, especially at camps, hiking trail shelters and parks. Many times, when they are found in an urban home they can be traced back to a visit to one of these facilities.
These parasites are attracted to warmth, which is why they bite us as we sleep. They are also attracted to carbon dioxide, which is what is exhaled by oxygen breathing species.
They reside in dark areas and crevices near the host. Their only food is the blood they obtain from the host. Hosts for this bug are many different species of vertebrates including canaries, poultry, guinea pigs, cats, dogs, mice, bats and unfortunately, man.
How They Feed
These bugs feed on the host while the host sleeps, generally just before dawn. They will usually not be seen during the daylight hours unless the infestation is severe.
This bug will secure itself to the host’s skin using its claws and then inserts it ‘beak’ into the skin of the host. The ‘beak’ consists of two tubes (stylets); one sucks up the host’s blood while the other injects saliva (venom) in the wound.
This saliva assists in preventing the host’s blood from coagulating to keep it flowing. It also has an anesthetic to numb the feeding area on the host. This saliva is what causes the itching sensation on the host’s skin.
Have Bed Bug Problems?
Feeding Based on Age
Nymphs (adolescents) feed for approximately three minutes while an adult may continue to feed on the blood of the host for ten to fifteen minutes.
Amazingly, they can survive 18 months without any oxygen and as much as a year without any blood. The bites cause burning, itching and swelling. The degree of symptoms depends upon the host’s susceptibility.
How Common are These Rashes?
The National Pest Management Association has stated that prior to the year 2000, as few as 25% of the pest control companies in the United States had encountered an infestation of these nasty bugs. Currently that number has risen to 95%.
At this point in time 76% of the United States pest control professionals think that this bug is the most difficult pest to eradicate.
Companies that previously received one or two calls per year are now reporting that they receive one or two calls weekly.
Why has the Infestation Returned?
There are various factors that are contributing to the resurgence in the United States. Citizens are frequently traveling to foreign areas that are infested.
Second-hand furniture and furnishings have become extremely popular. Populations have increased their resistance to the various pesticides. Control has been neglected by the pest control industry since the ‘40s.
What Does a Typical Bite Rash Look Like?
When these bugs bite an individual, they can develop a rash. These rashes have the ability to cause an extremely irritating itching sensation. The actual rash is not considered to be detrimental to one’s health.
Many times a rash is mistaken for bites that are caused by insects commonly found in a household. These insects include fleas, lice, ants and mosquitoes. The truth is that the majority of individuals are not aware they have been fed on by these parasites. Many times, they assume the rash is just a skin allergy.
However, once you are aware of what to look for, it is very easily recognizable.
One of the first signs is numerous tiny or raised skin bumps. These bumps will always be in a row or cl ustered pattern. This is because they generally feed more than one time at the same location.
Other Signs to Watch Out For
The next sign is that the bites will occur nightly while sleeping and the rashes will increase daily. These rashes will usually be located on the legs, arms, neck, face and back, which are the most common areas. The reason these places are the most common sites is because these areas are usually exposed during the night. Exposed areas of the host are what they prefer.
For a lot of individuals these tiny red bumps will generally manifest hours or even days after the bite. These bumps will then begin to itch. If these bumps are scratched, the area may become inflamed because of a severe infection.
The bites or welts are misdiagnosed by many dermatologists as bites from fleas or even scabies. Only around half of the populace notices the very first bite and makes the correlation to these bloodsucking bugs.
Many reactions to bites are delayed for approximately ten days. People over the age of 65 either react less or are not usually bitten. In one survey, 42% of individuals over 65 years reported no bites or reactions even though there was an ongoing presence.
These bugs are very shy and cautious. During the night, they are attracted to the odors and warmth of the closest human being. Believe it or not, they are able to feed for ten minutes or longer non-stop!
One will consume as much as six times its body weight in blood. However, usually the individual is unaware that they are being bitten. Once they have completed feeding, they look extremely bloated and have even been characterized as animated blood drops.
Not only can bites create a rash or welts, they also have the ability to spread disease organisms that bring on digestive and nervous disorders. Allergic reactions, particularly in more sensitive individuals can occur. The have been known to carry contributory agents for plague, anthrax, tularemia, typhus, relapsing fever and yellow fever.
They have been known to CARRY these diseases; at this point in time, there is NO PROOF that they actually TRANSMIT them. Children residing in homes that are extremely bug-ridden tend to become pale and listless.
How Long Does a Bite Rash Last?
Usually, the rash will appear several hours after the actual bite has occurred. In some cases, however, the rash may not appear for days. The appearance of the rash is dependent upon the individual’s allergic reaction to the bites. For the most part, the rash will last just a few days and then begins to fade slowly.
Unfortunately, the bite rash does have the ability to last a lot longer if the individual has a more intense allergic reaction to the bites. Some individuals will not have any reaction whatsoever, while others who have more sensitivity to allergies may develop rashes that cause extreme itching as they are continuously bitten nightly.
Many times medical attention will be necessary for these individuals to eliminate the rash completely.
How Can a Bite Rash be Treated?
The swelling and redness that is associated with a bite rash does not clear very easily. However, the itching and discomfort can easily be treated with several remedies including natural remedies and medications.
Oral antihistamines and steroid creams can be used in treatment regime. These medications will help to ease the itching that is associated with the rash.
It is important to remember not to scratch the bites. Scratching the bites ONLY MAKES THEM ITCH MORE and does have the ability to cause a secondary skin infection.
Names of Medications Used for the Treatment
There are topical steroid creams that are applied directly to the affected area to eliminate the itching sensation. One of these creams is hydrocortisone. Hydrocortisone is available with or without a prescription. The lower strength creams may be purchased over-the-counter.
However, if the low dose cream does not work, you may need to obtain a prescription from your physician to purchase a stronger dose.
Creams Containing Dephendrydramine & Pramoxine
The optimal creams contain a mixture of pramoxine to assist with the tenderness and pain and diphendrydramine to eliminate the itching associated with the rash.
Creams & Lotions Containing Benzyl Alcohol
Lotions and creams containing benzyl alcohol may also be used to treat both the symptoms of itching and pain. These lotions and creams can be extremely effective in eliminating the itch to resolve the bite rash rather quickly.
The use of Calamine Lotion will assist in protecting the skin while it heals. It also speeds the drying of the rash, which facilitates a quicker healing process.
If the individual is NOT allergic to aspirin, a cotton ball can be dipped into an Alka-Seltzer solution and then rubbed onto the bite rash to assist in clearing it up quicker.
Oral steroids are also useful in treating the itching. One of these steroids is called Prednisone and a prescription must be obtained from a physician to purchase this product. It is not an over-the counter medication.
Oral antihistamines can be very effective in relieving the itching sensation. One of these antihistamines is called Benadryl; however, these medications tend to cause drowsiness.
Therefore, this kind of medication is better used prior to retiring. It is not necessary to obtain a prescription from a doctor to purchase this medication. It is an over-the-counter product available at your local pharmacy.
Zyrtec & Claritin
There are some oral antihistamines that may be taken during the daytime and are not prone to cause drowsiness. A couple of these medications are Claritin and Zyrtec. It is not necessary to obtain a prescription for these medications either. Both are available over-the-counter at your local pharmacy.
Oral Antibiotic or an Antibiotic Ointment
If a bacterial infection occurs on the skin, a health-care provider/physician may prescribe an oral antibiotic or antibiotic ointment to treat the skin infection.
Corticosteroids, Antihistamines or Epinephrine Injections
Should an individual be suffering with a systemic allergic reaction, a physician can administer antihistamines, corticosteroids or epinephrine to the individual. *It is important to note that this condition is extremely rare.
Natural Remedies to Consider
Apply lukewarm water above 120°F or 50°C to the area that has been bitten as soon as possible. This has been known to relieve some of the symptoms.
Just by washing the rash regularly with the use of antibacterial soap helps to keep the bacteria from growing on the rash and causing an infection.
Applying a mixture of baking soda and salt to the affected areas will help to relieve inflammation.
Soaking in a lukewarm bath after adding powdered oatmeal will provide some relief from the itching sensation and reduce inflammation. A paste can be made out of the powdered oatmeal and applied to the areas affected.
A paste can be made from water and baking soda. Rub this paste on the area infected with the rash. Let the paste dry and then peel it off. This should help relieve some of the itching.
Lemon juice or Witch Hazel may be applied directly on the bites.
Home Treatment Suggestion Regimen
Wash the affected area with hot water and soap. Apply anesthetic lotion or cream liberally. To avoid welting and swelling apply ice to the affected areas.
Repeat the regimen every 6 to 8 hours until the symptoms subside.
When to Seek Medical Attention
If unsure what is actually causing the skin lesions, call a health-care provider or a physician.
If any signs that indicate a secondary infection are present, it is time to call the doctor. *Many times this secondary infection is caused by scratching of the bites/rash.
It is rare, but there have been cases of systemic allergic reactions, meaning affecting the body throughout. It is necessary to seek medical attention if this condition occurs.
Following-up with the health-care provider or physician could be necessary following a systemic allergic reaction. The health-care provider or physician may want to monitor your progress especially if a secondary skin infection had developed.
Preparing to See the Health-Care Provider/Physician
Prepare a List
Write down a very detailed description of all your symptoms.
Provide history related to any recent travel, especially international travel. Include information concerning any recent motel or hotel stays.
All the supplements and drugs you have taken including the dosage, frequency and when the last time was that you took these medications or supplements.
The health-care provider or physician will examine the areas that have been bitten.
The Life Cycle
Each female will lay from one to five eggs every day. That means that each female can lay anywhere from 200 to 500 eggs in her lifetime. These eggs are yellow/white and elongated. They are approximately 1/25” in length and just slightly curved.
Each batch of eggs is fastened on rough surfaces with cement after being laid in clusters. This process occurs several times daily in protected places such as the ceiling, floor crevices and furniture cracks. These are just a few places they deposit their eggs.
Nearly several hundred could be deposited in a period of just two months. A female will not continue to lay eggs after 11 days if she does not feed.
When Do the Eggs Hatch?
The eggs will hatch sometime between one to three weeks. The length of time prior to the hatching of the eggs will depend on the temperature where the eggs were deposited. In the warmer weather, the incubation time will be shortened. Once the eggs hatch, it is now considered to be a nymph.
Nymphs are tiny and have no color upon hatching. They have five stages. The nymph has to molt or instar five times and feed on a full meal of blood prior to proceeding to the next stage of its metamorphosis. The amount of the host’s blood that is taken at each of these 5 meals is from 2 ½ to 6 times the nymph’s original weight.
This period can continue for several weeks when the conditions are favorable or up to an entire year when there are no hosts to feed on and the temperatures are low. The nymph looks similar to an adult, only smaller and pale yellow, straw colored or white prior to feeding.
Once the nymph has fed, it will turn purple or red. A nymph can survive for nearly 2 months without feeding on a host. A nymph is approximately the size of the letter ‘R’ in the word ‘liberty’ that is on a penny.
The nymph will undergo a gradual and simple metamorphosis and eventually become an adult. Once they reach adulthood it will be shiny and brown.
Very soon, after becoming an adult, they mate and the cycle will begin again. The adults are about as big as Lincoln’s head on the penny. An adult prefer humans as their host.
Where to Look
It is important to remember that they have a very flat body that allows it to hide almost anywhere. During the initial onset of the infestation, they are only visible around the tufts and seams of the mattress. As the infestation grows, these bugs spread out and inhabit larger and larger areas. Generally they prefer rough surfaces like wood or paper for their harborages.
These parasites can be found in a multitude of places throughout the home. However, they will not usually stray very far from their host; therefore, the bedroom would be a good place to start the search. It is usually the center of the infestation.
Favorite Hiding Spots
Some of the places they reside include dark and tight cracks in the home, in mattress seams, under buttons, in holes, inside walls, upholstered furniture ticking and seams, in or on bedside furniture, dressers, electrical outlets, wall boards, window and door frames, behind baseboards and pictures.
They can also hide out in where slats join beds, under wallpaper or borders that are loose, under wall-to-wall carpeting, under tack boards, in bed clothes, hollow bed frames and any place that is dark and isolated is a place that they would call home. Inspecting the home at night with only a red light will assist in locating the infestation.
Smell the suspicious areas; if there is a sweet smell resembling rotting raspberries you may have an infestation. This is the smell of the liquid excreted by the bug when it is afraid.
Brown or black spots of dried excrement on the bed linens also indicate their presence.
Tips on How to Eliminate Within the Home
These bugs are extremely sensitive to heat in every stage of their life. Thermal death point of a common bed bug is just 111°F to 113°F. Many times even temperatures that are lower than this, 97°F to 99° F can kill multitudes. If the temperature is raised to 140° F for about an hour or to 120°F for several hours most infestations will be eradicated.
If a steam cleaner is used to steam or hair dryer is used to heat the crevices and cracks of the mattress every week, this will assist in keeping them at bay. The mattress can be placed inside a sauna at 170°F weekly to help eliminate any bugs.
Low temperatures also kill these pests, including the eggs. These temperatures range from 32°F to 48°F and must be maintained for up to 50 days to ensure the eggs have died. The nymphs and adults will die within a few hours. An infested bedroom can be closed off and unheated during the cold weather and the bugs will be eradicated.
Vacuuming and Changing Lines
Vacuum all the areas where they routinely reside. By vacuuming all the hiding places daily, the bugs and their eggs will be removed along with their shelter-the dirt. ALWAYS be sure to place the vacuum bag into a sealed garbage bag outside.
Do this OUTSIDE of the home and immediately after vacuuming. EVEN IF THE BAG IS NOT FULL-this needs to be done EVERY time the home is vacuumed until the bugs have been TOTALLY eliminated from the home.
Change bed linens daily, or in the least weekly. Wash the bedding and the bed with Borax. The bedding should be laundered at the minimum of 120°F. Dry the bedding on high heat as well. Place the pillows and any other non-washable items in the dryer on high heat at least once weekly. Do not allow the bedding to touch the floor at any time.
Other Home Maintenance Tips
Since this bug cannot fly and only has the ability to crawl, moving the bed away from the wall would be helpful. To further protect the bed, sprinkle the bed with talcum powder. A vinyl cover placed over the mattress and the box springs will help to eliminate these bloodsuckers. Leave the vinyl covers on for at least a year.
Dust all the cracks, drawers and electrical outlets with talcum powder. Be sure to tighten, caulk and then screen all possible entry routes. Then, lightly dust these areas with Comet® or talcum powder.
Steam clean, vacuum the mattresses, or clean with Borax to remove bugs and any debris remaining. Caulk all the crevices and any cracks and re-glue any wallpaper or borders that are loose or falling down.
Vacuum all drawers and cabinets, this will also deter rodents from nesting in these areas. Consider hiring a pest control company to assist in the elimination process. These creatures are a very annoying and pernicious vermin and with an experienced professional helping, the time necessary to eradicate these pests will be shortened.
Eliminating and Preventing Outside the Home
Keep all vegetation away from the home’s foundation. This includes shrubs as well as weeds.
Move all woodpiles and debris away from the home.
Eliminate all the rodent pests and garbage outside the home.
How To Cure Bed Bugs Bite?
Bed bugs bite tends to be intensely itchy. Although, bed bugs are not known to carry ailments, there are often some sort of health risks associated with their bites. Treating the itch will help prevent scratching. It is vital that you avoid scratching as it could lead to a skin infection. You may unknowingly bring bed bugs home from a holiday, second hand furniture or they may have entered your home from a neighbour’s house. Bed bug bites must be quickly treated once spotted.
How To Cure Bed Bugs Bite?
Bed bugs are tiny parasites that feed on human blood. Their bites can lead to rashes. Although, these rashes are not always harmful, they can cause discomfort and itchiness. When it comes to recognizing a bed bug bite, it can appear to be similar to an itchy welt, other insect bite problems or a cystic acne. Bed bug infestation can happen in any home, at anytime. Here’s how you can treat and cure bed bug bite.
Thoroughly Cleaning The Bed Bug Bites Affected Skin Area!
Once you discover that you have been bitten by a bed bug, it is a good idea to treat it like any other insect bite. However, never scratch the affected area. Firstly, you should clean the bitten area thoroughly with warm soapy water. You must ensure that all the bacteria gets cleaned up. This will prevent infection and itchiness. Use a soft, fresh and clean towel to pat dry. Apply an anti bacterial gel or ointment. This will help you to reduce soreness, scratching and puffiness.
Home Made Cure for Rashes Caused By Bed Bugs Bite!
Recognizing bedbug bites, is vital. An easy way to discover signs of this pest, is to look around the dark corners of your home and seams of mattresses. However, since they are hard to detect and can survive up to temperatures of 45 degrees Celsius, they are hard to eradicate without employing special pest control treatment. Listed below are two effective home remedies for bed bug bites:
1. Baking soda mixed with regular water –This is an easy to prepare home made solution for treating bed bug rashes. After cleaning the affected area with soap and water and patting it dry with a soft clean towel, apply the above mixture over the rash. Leave it on for an hour before thoroughly cleaning it away.
2. Apply Corticosteroid cream –For itchy bites, apply a corticosteroid cream. A mild cream can be obtained over the counter at any drug store. However, a doctor’s prescription may be required for a stronger corticosteroid cream.
Dermatologist Treatment For Bed Bug Bites!
Bedbugs have become a significant problem in Singapore and many other countries across the world. They spread rapidly and are challenging to treat. This has caused an enormous rise of bedbug outbreaks. It does not necessarily indicate uncleanliness or poor hygiene conditions. The key to solving this problem, is to ensure that pest control service Singapore is immediately called in to treat bed bugs in your home.
For multiple bites, blisters, skin infection, red or swollen skin and allergic skin reactions, consult a reputed dermatologist. The usual prescribed treatment deals with the following:
Infection:An antibiotic is prescribed for a mild infection along with an antiseptic medication.
Allergic reaction:The patient may be required to take an antihistamine, epinephrine or corticosteroid injection for severe allergic reactions.
Itch:You could apply a prescribed corticosteroid over the bites. Your dermatologist may also prescribe an antihistamine pill or a liquid to reduce itchiness.
Contact a leading pest control company before the bed bug problem worsens. The professionals will carry out a thorough inspection of every area of your home and suggest an effective treatment plan. Multiple visits may be required to completely eradicate the bugs and their eggs.
Reputed pest control company in Singapore offers fast, safe and effective service. They will offer the highest safety levels for your family members as well as pets. If you manage to recognize a bed bugs bite, you should treat it instantly. These bites usually go away and heal within a week or two. You should visit a dermatologist for severe itching or infection. If you do not experience any signs of a serious infection or reaction, you could consider treating the bed bugs bite at home.