Bed Bugs How Do They Occur

Bed bugs how do they occur

Understand how bed bug infestations occur and learn what are the possible methods to prevent bed bugs infestations in the house.

How Does a Bed Bug Infestation Occur

There are many ways a dwelling can become infested with bed bugs. In most common cases, bed bugs are unknowingly picked up from infested areas such as hotels, hostel or motels and transported to non-infested areas when they cling onto someone’s luggage, or clothing that is then brought into homes.

Bed bug infestations can also occur in homes because contaminated furniture, especially used bedframes, mattresses, wardrobes or couches are introduced to the home. Toys such as stuffed dolls can also be infested as well.

Since bed bugs are able to live for several months without feeding it is possible for them to be hiding in vacant apartments and homes that appear to be clean. It also possible for bed bugs to migrate from apartment to apartment through small crevices and cracks in walls and floors.

Bed bugs can also live on birds, rodents and household pets and that can be easily carry into a home, allowing the bugs to spread in this manner.

How to Detect the Seriousness of a Bed Bug Infestation

Here are some simple signs that will let you identify infestation and whether the area is heavily infested or if it is a mild bed bug infestation.

    Bed bug bites are usually the first clue in identifying an infestation. The bites will leave red bumps on the back, legs and arms. Since they feed while you are sleeping it is hard to catch them in the act. They can look like other insects bites except they will appear in groups or rows of bites and usually are accompanied by a rash. You will also notice that you are getting bitten just about every night and you are going to see the bumps regularly.

Bed bugs leave behind a great deal of waste in infested areas and it is another method of identifying an infestation. You will notice small bloodstains on your bed sheets from crushed insects, or dark spots from their droppings around your mattresses. Also you will find the skin that is shed during molting, empty egg shells and dead bed bugs in the seams and tufts of your mattress or inside the box spring. The more waste that is found the more heavily infested the area is.

A great way to go about identifying infestation is to use double sided tape. You should line the edges of your mattress and box spring with the tape as well as place it on the floor around the bed. The more heavily infested the room is, the more bugs will be on the tape.

  • When a bed bug infestation becomes severe, the room would also carry a distinctive and unpleasant almond-like scent.
  • Methods to Prevent Bed Bug Infestations

    Some of the things you can do yourself to stop bed bug infestations in your home include:

      You should regularly inspect all possible hiding places of your home for evidence of bed bugs, especially the mattresses and your bedframe.

    Repair and seal any cracks that may be present in you the interior and exterior of you home to prevent bed bugs from entering and escaping.

    Be sure that windows have screens and repair existing screens to keep birds and other rodents from entering.

    Regularly remove excess clutter and clothing because they can be additional hiding spots for bed bugs.

    Vacuum the mattresses, bed frames, carpets and upholstered furniture regularly to remove any possible bed bugs and their eggs. Immediately after vacuuming, dispose of the vacuum bag in a sealed plastic bag in an outdoor trash bin.

    Use a bed bug spray to treat any suspected infested areas or furnitures. A spray is also a handy tool to help kill off any bed bugs on sight.

  • One of the best ways to prevent bed bug infestation is to avoid buying or accepting any previously used furniture. Check all luggage and clothing after traveling before returning home especially if you have bed bug bites symptoms in the hotels or accomodations that you have previously stayed.
  • Bed Bugs Travel Prevention Tips– Checklists and tips on how to avoid bed bugs while you travel.

    Bed Bug Traps– Monitors and traps for the detection and trapping of bed bugs in the house.

    Bed Bug Repellent– Get the truth about the effectiveness of bed bug repellent for skin.

    Additional Resources:

    U.S. EPA on Bed Bug Control
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on controlling and treating bed bugs.

    Cornell University Bed Bug Guide
    Guidelines for prevention and managment of bed bugs in shelters and group living facilities.

    Bed Bugs FAQ
    Frequently Asked Questions on bed bugs from the National Pest Management Association.

    This website’s mission is to provide comprehensive information about bed bugs .
    Popular topics include how to kill bed bugs , bed bug rash , bed bugs treatment and what do bed bugs look like .

    Department of Health

    Bed Bugs – What They Are and How to Control Them

    Bed bugs have been around for thousands of years. They feed on blood, but are not known to spread any diseases to humans. Some people can be allergic to their bites. Getting rid of a bed bug infestation is not easy, but there are steps you can take to control the problem. There are also steps you can take to avoid bringing bed bugs home.

    What are bed bugs?

    How can bed bugs get into my home?

    • They can come from other infested areas or from used furniture. They can hitch a ride in luggage, purses, backpacks, or other items placed on soft or upholstered surfaces.
    • They can travel between rooms in multi-unit buildings, such as apartment complexes and hotels.

    How can I avoid bringing bed bugs into my home?

    • When staying in a hotel, place your bag on a suitcase stand rather than on the bed or floor. Keep the rack away from walls or furniture. When returning home, wash the clothes from your trip and put them in a hot dryer.
    • Inspect new and used furniture before bringing it inside. Look in seams, tufts and under cushions.

    How do I know if I have a bed bug problem?

    • You can see the bed bugs themselves, their shed skins, or their droppings in mattress seams and other items in the bedroom.
    • There may also be blood stains on sheets.

    How do I control a bed bug problem in my home?

    It can be done, but it usually requires what is called an "integrated pest management" (IPM) approach. This combines techniques that pose the lowest risk to your health and the environment. Try these strategies:

    • Clean and get rid of clutter, especially in your bedroom.
    • Move your bed away from walls or furniture.
    • Vacuum molding, windows and floors every day. Vacuum sides and seams of mattresses, box springs and furniture. Empty the vacuum or the bag immediately and dispose of outside in a sealed container or bag.
    • Wash sheets, pillow cases, blankets and bed skirts and put them in a hot dryer for at least 30 minutes. Consider using mattress and box spring covers –the kind used for dust mite control–and put duct tape over the zippers.
    • Seal cracks and crevices and any openings where pipes or wires come into the home.

    Should I also try pesticides?

    Pesticides may not be effective and can be dangerous if used improperly. If you decide to use pesticides, follow these rules:

    • Only use pesticides that are registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (look for the U.S. EPA Registration Number on the label) and make sure they are labeled to control bed bugs.
    • Do not apply pesticides directly to your body (there are no repellents registered to control bed bugs that can be used on the human body).
    • Do not use outdoor pesticides indoors.
    • If you decide to hire a pest control company, make sure they have experience with bed bugs. They should follow the steps of IPM, along with any pesticide application. Use a company that is registered and employs licensed applicators. The Department of Environmental Conservation has a list of registered companies.

    It takes time and persistence to get rid of bed bugs, and in some cases, the cooperation of landlords, neighbors and others. It can be physically and emotionally exhausting. It can also be expensive when pest control companies are called in. Just remember – bed bugs are more of a nuisance than a health concern and, with vigilance, you can avoid or deal with infestations.

    See the following for more information on bed bug biology and control measures:

    Photo courtesy of Dr. Harold Harlan, Armed Forces Pest Management Board Image Library

    Bed Bug Infestation

    Bed bugs are flat and small in size, allowing them to hide easily from view during the day when they are not active. They hide in mattresses, bed frames, bedding, furniture, carpets, baseboards and bedroom clutter. They are most commonly found in the seams of mattresses or inside box springs. However, it is not necessary to locate a specimen to identify an infestation. Their excrement leaves brown to black stains on mattresses and linens, and bloodstains may be visible where bed bugs have been accidentally crushed.

    Bed bugs are commonly transported within luggage, allowing them to spread anywhere humans settle. Infestations have become a problem in domestic households, hotels, dormitories and other places of residence. Because of their small size and propensity to hide within mattresses and furniture, controlling a bed bug infestation can prove difficult.

    The presence of only one fertile female bed bug in a friendly environment such as a single or multiple family dwelling is an infestation that is waiting to happen. Since a healthy, blood-fed female bed bug can produce from 200-500 healthy eggs during her lifetime and may lay from 2-5 eggs each day, the likelihood of an infestation of bed bugs is extremely high unless bed bug control efforts by your pest management professional are employed to eliminate the infestation.

    Mattress Infested With Bed Bugs

    Bed Bug Control

    Cimex lectularius L.

    Learn what Bed Bugs look like, and how to detect if you have a Bed Bug Infestation.

    Find out how Bed Bugs infiltrate your home and where they are attracted to.

    Learn about Bed Bug bites. their feces and how they can impact your health.

    Learn how Orkin handles Bed Bugs, homeopathic cures and the cost of Bed Bug extermination services.

    Everything you need to know about bedbugs

    If you buy something through a link on this page, we may earn a small commission. How this works.

    Bedbugs are small, wingless insects that feed exclusively on the blood of warm-blooded animals. Humans are the preferred hosts for the two main species.

    There are two species of bedbugs that are known to feed on human blood. They are known scientifically asCimex lectulariusandCimex hemipterus. They have been found in the tombs of ancient Egyptians from 3,500 years ago.

    Over millions of years, bedbugs have evolved as nest parasites, inhabiting the nests of birds and the roosts of bats. Some of them have learned to adapt to the human environment.

    Newborn bedbugs, called hatchlings or nymphs, are tiny but visible and about the size of a poppy seed. Adults grow to about 0.25 inches long with an oval and flattened shape when they are not feeding. After feeding, they can double in size. Nymphs, eggs, and adults are visible to the naked eye.

    They are called bedbugs because of their preferred habitat in human homes: Sofas, bed mattresses, clothing, and other soft furnishings. They also prefer the dark.

    Bedbugs are seen as a growing problem within all types of dwellings, including private homes, dormitories, cruise ships, army barracks, and shelters.

    When seen close up, their color may range from a white, light tan to a deep brown or burnt orange color. When they have fed, a dark red or black blob may be observed within their body. They seek shelter in dark cracks and crevices when disturbed.

    Fast facts on bedbugs

    • Bedbugs are small wingless insects that feed on the blood of warm-blooded animals.
    • Most bedbugs feed on their hosts while they are asleep.
    • The peak time for feeding is between midnight and 5 am.
    • Bites can be seen quickly but may take up to 14 days to become visible.
    • Bed bugs need to feed regularly to reproduce, lay eggs and survive.

    Share on Pinterest A bedbug may cause a coriander-like smell.

    The most obvious sign of bedbugs in the home is that people complain of bites that occurred while they were asleep. If this happens, examine the bedrooms for bedbugs and signs of bedbug activity.

    Look carefully in bed linen and the seams and tufts of mattresses and box springs for bugs or eggs. The eggs will look like tiny, pale poppy seeds.

    Signs of bedbug activity may occur beneath loose areas of wallpaper near beds, in the corner of desks and dressers, in the laundry, and in drawers.

    Keep an eye out for dark brown or rust-colored bedbug droppings that stain material and mattresses. Bedbug excrement is a liquid that looks either light brown or black, and it usually either beads up or is absorbed by the material around it.

    A large population of bedbugs may produce a coriander-like odor.

    Treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and includes:

    • topical creams, such as cortisone, to relieve itching
    • an oral antibiotic, if infection occurs because of skin irritation around the bite
    • corticosteroids, if a person has a severe allergic reaction
    • antihistamines, to help relieve allergic reactions

    Most bites heal within 1 and 2 weeks of occurrence.

    Some of these treatments are available for purchase online, including cortisone and antihistamines.

    Since bedbugs can hide in a wide range of places in the home, they are not easy to remove. It is advisable to bring in a pest control professional.

    Removing excess clutter from the house, giving the bedbugs fewer places to hide, makes inspection and removal less difficult.

    Some pest control companies request that furniture is pulled away from walls and mattresses and box springs stood on edge before they enter the home. Other companies prefer everything to be left where it is so that they can perform a check before moving the furniture themselves.

    Scientists at Ohio State University have determined that combining the chemical signals of bedbugs with a common insect-control agent can make it an effective treatment for killing the bugs.

    Most bedbugs feed on their hosts while they sleep. They draw blood in a painless way.

    While feeding, they inject a small amount of saliva into the host’s skin. If they feed on one particular person for several weeks, the individual may become more sensitive to their saliva and the chemicals that it contains. The host might eventually develop an allergic response.

    Bedbugs, like fleas, tend to bite in rows. There are likely to be two or three bites in each row. This is probably because the bedbug is interrupted while feeding, and then comes back about half an inch further down for its next bite.

    Bites can take up to 14 days to become visible but often appear within several days. Bedbug bites are larger than fleabites and do not usually have a red dot at the center. The bites tend to be raised and red.

    They can be scattered or occur in clusters of three over the paths of blood vessels, known as the “breakfast, lunch, and dinner sign.”

    Most people who are bitten show no symptoms at all and often do not know it happened. This makes it more difficult to prevent or identify potential infestations. Some individuals, however, may become ill and nauseous. It is possible to get scars and skin infections from scratching the bites.

    Very rarely, people might have an anaphylactic reaction to bedbug bites. It is possible but rare to have an asthmatic reaction to bedbugs.

    Bedbugs are adaptable, and there are many ways in which a bedbug infestation can occur.

    They may get into a new home as stowaways when luggage, furniture, and bedding is moved in. People should be careful when purchasing second-hand furniture and should never purchase used mattresses. A careful visual inspection should allow a person to detect bedbugs or their droppings.

    Even vacant and seemingly clean homes may have bedbugs in them. They can survive for over two months without any food. It is also believed they can move from apartment to apartment through hollows and holes in the walls and the tubes through which wires and pipes run.

    Bedbug infestations can be difficult to prevent.

    It is possible to encase both the mattress and box spring in a protective cover, as some people do for allergy relief. Some pest control firms sell them, as well as a number of retail outlets. Click here for a range of products that can help to protect a bed against infestation.

    Once encased, any bedbug trapped inside and prevented from feeding will eventually die. Some people keep their new beds encased, as it prevents the bugs from getting into the crevices in the mattress and makes it easier to keep the surface clean and bug-free.

    When traveling, avoid putting luggage on the bed to reduce the risk of bringing bedbugs home in a suitcase. It is also worth vacuuming any luggage after you return home and making sure you get rid of the contents of the vacuum in a tightly sealed bag. Dispose of this bag in a trashcan outside.

    Separate travel clothes from laundry and immediately wash them in hot water.

    If you spot bedbugs in the home, call a professional and do not attempt to resolve the infestation. Bedbugs can spread from room to room in clothing, and trying to remove them yourself can often make the matter worse.

    Although they are not known to carry diseases, bedbugs can affect an individual’s quality of life, causing distress, discomfort, embarrassment, and broken sleep.

    Here are the important facts to have in mind when trying to remove or identify a bedbug infestation:

    • The peak time for feeding is between midnight and 5 AM. Hungry bedbugs will try to feed at any time, but they do not like sunlight and prefer the dark. One feed will take between 5 and 10 minutes. The bug will then return to its hiding place.
    • Bedbugs will feed every 5 to 10 days. They can, however, last for about 70 days without feeding. A well-fed bedbug has a lifespan of several months.
    • They find their host by seeking out human body heat and sensing the presence of the carbon dioxide on the breath.
    • A bedbug will pierce the skin of its host with its mouth part. It first injects saliva that is a mixture of an anesthetic, so that the host feels nothing, and an anticoagulant so that the blood flows out freely. It then sucks out blood until it is full. The bites are not noticeable until after the skin reaction has occurred. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it can take up to 14 days for bites to appear.
    • Bedbugs can only reproduce when they have reached maturity. A female bedbug lays approximately seven eggs in a day and hundreds during her lifetime.

    A review of bedbug research conducted in 2016 found that while they are highly resistant to removal methods, bedbugs seem to be more of a nuisance than a serious health problem. Research has failed to show any link between the bedbugs associated with humans and human disease.

    The biggest risk for humans comes from secondary bacterial infection. With bedbugs, this would occur as a result of scratching the skin. Scratching, if it breaks the skin, allows normal bacteria from the surface of the skin to penetrate deeper.

    The source of any bacterial infection is, therefore, the human host and not the bedbug.

    Bed Bug Symptoms

    Bed bugs have made resurgence in the world in recent years. These nasty little bloodsuckers are disgusting and can be troublesome to anyone that comes in contact with them. In fact, this problem is considered a national epidemic. Even fine four-star hotels have found themselves facing infestations. In ancient times only the wealthiest families would find themselves to have them because these people had the warmest homes.

    What are They?

    This bug is a member of the Hemiptera family. The mouthpieces are made for piercing and sucking. There are at least 92 known species of them in the world today, including those based in tropical locations like Florida. This bug not only feasts on humans; it likes chickens and bats as well.

    These bugs are parasites that don’t discriminate. They don’t care if you live in the most expensive house in the most expensive neighborhood in your town or in a cardboard box under a bridge. They are bloodsuckers. You are a human and you have blood therefore you are a candidate for this parasite’s next meal.

    They are a bigger nuisance than mosquitoes or flies because they are more difficult to get rid of. If you have ever suffered through a flea infestation in your home, you know how difficult it is to get rid of them and how much work it entails. Getting rid of them is much more difficult.

    How are They Different?

    They cannot fly or hop. They simply crawl wherever they want to go. They crawl anywhere, including up walls and across ceilings. To get into different homes and hotels these nasty little parasites tend to hitchhike rides on your clothing, in your purse, or other pieces of luggage. Once in their new home they will crawl into your couch or sofa or the mattress on your bed. They can even make a home in that nice pile of blankets you have folded in your closet.

    Have Bed Bug Problems?

    These little insect vampires do not live on or in humans. They simply feed off of us and then head back to their home to rest and digest our blood. These tiny pests feed about once a week and it takes only five to ten minutes of sucking your blood to fill them up. The female will lay five to ten eggs immediately after feasting.

    How do They Spread?

    These bugs multiply by what is called traumatic insemination. This means the male bug slices through the female’s abdomen and inserts his semen directly into her body cavity.

    The fertilized female will then remove herself from the population to a safer location so she will not run the risk of being further injured. It is in this place that the female will lay her eggs.

    What do They Look Like?

    They are sort of round or oval and are flat. They have six legs and on their head they have two mouthpieces, which are used to pierce the skin and then suck blood similar to sucking through a straw. Their color ranges from straw colored to dark red or mahogany in color to even dark brown.

    The six legs are well developed and allow these critters to climb up vertical surfaces such as a wall or window although they struggle when climbing glass. Their upper body is crinkly like paper and hairy.

    They cannot fly but have what are considered “half-wings” They have front wings that are basically scales. They have two eyes with approximately 30 facets in each. A male bug is easy to distinguish from a female because the male has an abdomen that comes to a sharp point and females have a rounded abdomen.

    Common Symptoms

    The first thing to do if you suspect you have an infestation is to know what they look like. The adults are brown and sort of round shaped, flat and about a quarter of an inch in length. When they have had your blood for dinner they are a dark-red color and increase in size to about three eighths of an inch.

    Usually when a person suspects an infestation it is because they wake up in the morning with a bite mark of some sort on their body. If it is just one mark, chances are you had a sleep encounter with a spider of some sort.

    Many bite marks that are itchy could be signs of a stray mosquito in your bedroom. They can be difficult to find in the daytime so you may have to look around for a while.

    Many small, red bite marks on your upper body can indicate you are the host of a bug brothel. If you tend to have several small bite marks on your legs and feet this can mean you have a flea infestation instead.

    You may not always see them. They can hide under carpeting, between walls, under flooring and other dark places. Their favorite place to call home is soft, cushiony places that are dark. When a home first contracts them they may not be seen until the population grows.

    How Difficult is it to Find Them?

    It may be very difficult to find them at first. Don’t be fooled though. You can see them…eventually. As the population multiplies they are easier to find. These nasty little bloodsuckers don’t like coming out during the day, just like vampires.

    As the infestation grows it is not only easier to see them during the day, they begin leaving their mark on everything. You may notice a dark line, particularly in the crevices of your mattress. If you have light-colored furniture you can also see the dark lines they leave behind during their travels.

    If you think you have an infestation you can test your suspicions by sleeping on a white sheet. In the morning, check the sheet for little dots of blood. This is not any blood; it’s your blood. These parasites actually inject a secretion into your skin before feeding and this can cause an allergic reaction in some people.

    Where to Look for Them

    They like to hide in certain places. If you suspect you have an infestation but can’t see the nasty little suckers on your mattress, you should strip all of the sheets and covers from your mattress. Next, flip up your mattress and check the top of the box springs.

    If you still don’t see anything, flip up the box spring to check the underside. They like to hang upside down on the bottom of box springs. Once you have removed the mattress and box springs are removed from the bed frame check the frame thoroughly especially in the corners.

    Another place to look aside from the bed is your dresser drawers. If you do have an infestation they are likely in your clothing as well as your bedding. Pull out your drawers and look in the crevices of the drawer as well as the crevices inside the shell of the dresser.

    No matter how infested your home is, they can be difficult to see. Remember, they are tiny creatures. When an infestation is bad enough you will be able to see clusters of them on top of your mattress.

    Other Search Tips

    Another way you can see them is to inspect your mattress and other furniture at night with a red light only.

    Other places to look are dark areas such as behind wallpaper that has lifted, in curtains or drapes, in stoves and ovens or any other unused appliances throughout the house, behind switch plates for your switches and outlet covers and under the tack strips of carpeting. Basically, these insects can live anywhere in your home.

    Because it is possible for them to have a host other than a human host, it is necessary to make sure you caulk and seal all openings or cracks and crevices to your home. You need to ensure no rodents enter your home carrying a hitchhiking bug.

    Do They Leave Marks on the Mattress?

    Yes. They leave their mark behind. The first, and most obvious sign, is their waste. As gross as it sounds, it’s one of the telltale signs of bed bugs. This waste consists of different things such as blood, fecal matter, skin shed, eggs and other dead bugs.

    This type of waste will show up as dark spots on the mattress, especially in the crevices or on the box springs. The waste can also be found in other areas of the bedroom or house where these little nuisances like to live.

    In early infestation, are found mostly along the seams of a mattress as well as the tufts. As time goes by and the population increases, they move out and on to bigger and better spaces. They prefer to gather on rough surfaces and harbor on wood or paper surfaces.

    How Long Does it Take for Bites to Appear?

    These bugs only need to feed once a week so they can be difficult to diagnose. In addition, each person reacts differently to the bites and still others have no response at all.

    Most people will show signs of a bite in the morning after getting the bite. The initial bite presents as a red welt similar to a mosquito bite but smaller.

    Other people are very allergic to the bites and will have a severe rash-like symptom. Still others may have a delayed reaction and not show welts for several days. It can even take up to ten days for some people to show bite marks.

    For some unknown reason it is unlikely for people over the age of 65 to get bitten by one or have a reaction to their bites. A survey conducted found that 42% of people over the age of 65 either did not have any bites or did not have any reaction to the bites despite living in an infested area.

    How Do the Bites Appear on the Skin?

    The bites tend to appear in rows of three or four and are very itchy. There are a couple of theories on why the bites appear in rows.

    First, there is a theory that they feed while you are sleeping and when you move or twitch and the bug will remove its mouthparts from your skin. When you stop moving the bug crawl a short distance and bites again; this can result in one bug leaving several bites in a row.

    Another theory is that you lay on a crease in your sheets and there are several bugs in that crease. As you lay there the bugs bite at the same time which leaves a row of bite marks.

    Just because you have several bites this does not dictate the number of bugs you have. The theories above just show ways in which you can have rows of bite marks.

    Can I Get a Disease From a Bite?

    There have been around 30 disease pathogens found in these bugs, but none of these diseases have ever been transmitted to a human from a bite. It is considered highly unlikely that they transmit diseases. The only medical worry is the itching and swelling caused by the bites.

    Another report claims that they are capable of spreading blood infesting disease organisms that can affect the nervous system and digestive system. Children who live in an infested household tend to become listless and pale.

    Some disease organisms found include anthrax, plague, typhus, tularemia, yellow fever and relapsing fever.

    What are Common Reactions to the Bites?

    The first, and most annoying, part of a bite is the intense itching. The actual bite itself looks like a small, red, raised welt most commonly found on the upper body although you can get a bite anywhere.

    Some people may have no reaction whatsoever to a bite. Other people may have a delayed reaction and not have any signs or symptoms of a bite for several days. There are a few people who are extremely allergic to the bites and will have a severe reaction.

    In cases of allergy, the bites can be extremely swollen and itchy. In this case, a person may need to visit his/her personal physician in order to get steroid cream or a steroid injection to decrease the allergic reaction.

    Do They Leave a Scent or Odor in the Room?

    In a heavily infested room you will notice a sweet, musty smell that is obnoxious. The smell is most often the strongest under the headboard and mattress. People have equated the smell to that of rotten raspberries mixed with moldy shoes. Yuck!

    As it is possible to have these insects in other parts of your home, you can have this musty smell anywhere in your house where there is furniture or pictures on the walls. They like to follow their hosts, and they will follow you. Wherever you are, that’s where they will be.

    This odor is caused by an oily secretion emitted by the bugs.

    How Can I Keep Them Out When I Am Traveling?

    There are some simple steps you can take to ensure you don’t take the chance of bringing them into your home when you return from a trip.

    First, you should never set your suitcase or any clothing or shoes on the floor of the hotel room. Instead, keep them in the bath tub, on the toilet or on the clean counter top.

    Before you lay your head down to rest for the night, be sure to pull the blankets and sheets down and check the mattress for any bug waste (remember the dark lines). If you want to be really thorough you should check in the dresser drawers and under the mattress and box springs.

    Spots and stains on the mattress can indicate infestation but will not tell you if it is present or in the past.

    Returning Home

    If you are in your own vehicle, make sure you put your luggage in large plastic bags. When you get home, immediately take your suitcase and clothing to the washer and place your clothing directly in the washer. Wash your clothing in hot water and dry them on high heat for at least 30 minutes.

    After removing your clothing from your suitcase you need to put the suitcase in the garage for a day or two in case you do have any residual hitchhikers. If you do not have a garage you need to keep your suitcase outside for a couple of days.

    You should also remove the clothing you are wearing and wash and dry it with the clothing that was in your suitcase. This will ensure you have gotten rid of any unwanted guests before you get an infestation.

    If you were in your own vehicle when traveling you need to vacuum the seats and trunk of the car and then immediately throw the vacuum bag away. If you have a bag-less vacuum you should empty the container in the trash and then immediately take the trash bag out to the dumpster.

    Getting Rid of Them

    There are several things you can do to get rid of them rather than calling the exterminator.

    Vacuum Daily

    Also vacuum your mattress and furniture at least once a week. This is a good practice because it will also remove dust mites and skin mites.

    Stay in the Same Bed, Regardless of Infestation Status

    If you move throughout the house, so will these bugs. They use the carbon dioxide you exhale as a sort of honing beacon to tell them where you have gone and how to get to you for their next meal. They have trouble sensing you if you are further than five feet away from them.

    They may be small, but they are fast! They can move up to 30 feet in six minutes. Moving to different spots in the house will just make your infestation more widespread.

    Get a Mattress Cover That is Approved for Treating

    This mattress cover should completely encase both the mattress and the box springs and should zip tightly closed. For added protection you can cover the zipper area with duct tape or masking tape. Mattress covers are not a solution, but they will allow you to sleep without getting bites and will assist you in getting the problem under control.

    Be Careful Who You Visit

    Never decide just to stay at someone else’s house. You could potentially spread the bugs to your friends or family.

    Get Rid of All Clutter

    They love to live in dark places. The more clutter you have in your home the more likely you are to have great difficulty getting an infestation under control.

    Consider a Professional Exterminator

    They are going to charge you a small fortune to get rid of the infestation, but you will get a guarantee with a professional. There are several treatments you can purchase to get rid of the pests yourself but you may find that these products just make them go into hiding for a period of time and then come back out when the coast is clear.

    If you do decide to use a professional exterminator, ask him/her if they have a bug sniffing dog. There are an increasing number of K-9s that can sniff out these little pests. Be aware that the cost of using a K-9 to sniff them out can be expensive, but has been shown to be 97% effective.

    Today, these bugs are generally resistant to all types of pesticides so getting rid of them can be extremely challenging.

    Extreme Cold Will Kill Them

    If you are suffering from infestation in one room in your home you can close off that room and open the windows in the winter. The adults will die in a matter of hours while the eggs will take 30 to 50 days to die. During all stages of their lives they have the potential to live for five days in 14°F temperatures.

    Heat Will Also Do the Trick

    Temperatures of 97°F to 99°F will kill a large amount of infestations although certain thermal death occurs around 111°F to 113°F.

    If you have a large infestation you can get the temperature in your home up to 140°F for an hour or 120°F for a couple of hours.

    This will normally eliminate almost all infestations. Keep in mind you may have to do this once per week for a period of time in order to eradicate the infestation entirely.

    Use a steam cleaner to clean your mattress paying extra attention to the creases and crevices in the mattress itself. You can put your mattress in a sauna at 170°F to kill the bugs.

    Never Cover Your Mattress With Harsh Chemicals

    Instead, use baby powder or other talcum powder. They have great difficulty surviving in fine powder.

    Steps to Prevention

    1. Keep all wood piles and debris away from your house.
    2. Make sure to trim the weeds and other growth that are next to the foundation of your home.
    3. Keep garbage to a minimum to keep rodents away.
    4. Seal cracks and crevices in your siding and around windows to ensure no rodent can enter.
    5. Make sure your attic and crawl space is well lit and has air circulation while not being accessible to rodents.
    6. Vacuum your house daily.
    7. Wash your bed linens weekly.
    8. Dust at least once a week.
    9. Store mattresses in protected areas.
    10. Fumigate any mattress that has been in storage with carbon dioxide before using them.
    11. Cover all drawers and outlets as well as all mattresses with a light coating of baby powder or other talcum powder.


    • Nymphs feed on their human host for about three minutes.
    • Adults feed on their human hosts for 10 to 15 minutes.
    • They easily survive six or more months between feedings.
    • In cooler climates, they live over one year without feeding.
    • They live over 18 months without oxygen.
    • They feed on other hosts including household pets, birds, poultry, and bats.
    • They travel more than 100 feet to get their next meal.
    • A nymph matures to adulthood in four weeks.
    • The life cycle of is three to 18 months, depending on the circumstances. For example, heat will shorten their life. In addition, a minimal amount of food will decrease their life span.
    • One report showed a female lived for 565 days without food.
    • A recent study was conducted in Vancouver, Canada where five bugs were smashed to see if they had diseases.Three of the five were found to be carrying the super bug MRSA, or methicillin resistant staph aureus. This is the bacterium that is resistant to almost all antibiotics.The other two bugs had another type of bacteria known as VRE or vancomycin resistant Enterococcus faecium. This is another type of antibiotic resistant bacterium but it is less serious than MRSA.
    • The center of an infestation is normally the sleeping area for human hosts.
    • Once they find a host they normally do not travel far.

    Armed with your new information you are better prepared to not only prevent them from entering your home, but you will be able to recognize even the earliest signs.

    The most important step is to take action at the first sign of infestation. There are many things you can try to get rid of these pesky little critters as well as things you can do to prevent getting them. Keeping your home bed bug free means you won’t ever experience their bite.


    Thanks for all the very useful information. Its disgusting but useful.

    Baby powder suffocates them. Wintergreen rubbing alcohol kills them on contact ! Using tea tree oil around the edges of each room and outside edges of building will keep them at bay . I am a neat freak and clean freak and still got them gross lil buggers . I also heard high heat in a room kills them off as well .

    Thank You for the info, it has truly been helpful, and it really works. as for me myself I noticed something. Was wrong because I felt so drained and tried to the point that I thought it was due to chronic fatigue because I work so much putting in many hours a day and to add to the problem I’m one of those people who don’t have any reaction to being bitten so it was very hard to discover what was the root of the problem that all changed once I finally saw one and I knew from there exactly what it was”The Cursed Bed Bug” I went away from a vacation and didn’t come back alone the thing is at the hotel I was staying in the buggers didn’t feed on me there they waited until I came home and settled in to begin my life of working long hours a day to enjoy the things I want out of life and that’s when it started on my rest day I work everyday accept on Sundays which I sleep in all day to start a new on Monday or the following week but I could not shake the feeling of being so drained and tried I was not myself anymore and I didn’t know why until I finally saw one… But now with the help of tea tree oil, rubbing alcohol and I used the raid bed bug killer I’m slowly but surely KILLING THEM and getting my life back it is and was a nightmare come true… I thought it was just a saying Good Night Sleep Tight And Don’t Let The Bed Bugs Bite… From my childhood days… Was I And Many Others Soooo Wrong… Thanks Again and I hope my story can help someone else find a piece of mind and get there life back by killing them slowly… Take Care Rich

    my cousin mellisa has bed bugs underneath her skin, i have no idea how to get read of them please reply at my email ([email protected])

    scabies live under the skin

    My Cousin, Mellisa, has Bed Bugs underneath her skin. I have no idea how to get rid of them. Please reply at my email…etc… There, that’s better!

    Bed Bugs Do Not live under your skin. They bite you and suck your blood but Do Not live under your skin! It sounds more like Scabies that do live under your skin. I would go see a Dermatologist to get an accurate diagnosis.

    I seem to have scabies and bed bugs at the same time.
    Can’t understand how that happened.

    I found an almost full grown bed bug and eggs when cleaned my butt tonight. Mind you I don’t know if this is possible, I had been itchy in my behind since last autumn, the doctor even looked last spring said didn’t see anything, and have been scratching almost continuously. Is it possible they’ve been there that long, but had no bites until 3 weeks ago and never saw one?

    I also saw tons of black hard oval little dots on bed, looks like eggs, but not bedbug eggs.

    Maybe the bites are only scabies, but have been looking at everything like crazy and that is why I saw the bed bug?

    I am so freaked out.

    Maybe the bedbug is feeding on the scabies.

    Loaded my bottom with baby powder, thanks for the info… whatever was moving down there isn’t moving anymore….

    Never had anything like this…. and I really hate bugs too…. so you can only imagine how freaked out I am.

    Thanks all for taking the time to post.

    That information was quite helpful I have been bitten by some of them and I swelled up bigger than a mosquito.

    When they bite do they leave their nasty smell behind?

    I would really like to hear a reply to the comment about bugs under her skin. I have been feeling sick and tired all the time lately ever since my roommate and I had bedbugs. I feel this is getting worse. im so frustrated andstressed out idk where to turn. my dr acted like it was no big deal and said no diseases can be transmitted by bites. Please help me.

    actually they do transfer disease its rare but if feces gets into and opening like u wipe your eye or mouth without knowing it is on your hand or skin and it enters your body, due to the overwhelming epidemic spread throughout the us, a lot are denying this fact of infection, as for the bugs under the skin, I have never heard of this nor am I an expert but have experienced 4x of bed bugs which they also deny. They say there is only three species of the bed bug, when at the moment in new york there is actually a new type of looking bed bug not like any other normal ones that are ¼ inch long, oval, reddish-brown, and wingless. Their body is very flat, and they possess long, slender legs and antennae. The new ones in new york which is spreading and multiplying extremely fast has a round butt body and are not flat and dont look like a squashed oval roach, yet new york exterminators who dont know how to rid of them correctly state they are in fact bed bugs even though they dont fit the description. The bites are exact the same and the trauma is exact the same, which is three or four bites in a row usually yet can be less or more. Now after you experience bed bug trauma, not only do you experience it but your skin does too. So after they are long gone and nothing is crawling on you for many months after you will feel as if things are still crawling on you/in you. If you are feeling sick and I hope due to my late response you are in fact ok. Please find a bug specialist doctor who knows what they are talking about. I wish all the best of luck with ridding of these nasty disgusting pests. Twice I dealt with them by moving into other peoples houses. It is about the right exterminator to rid of the problem for good several times and is not cheap. Remember if its free it will not rid of your problem.

    My friend has a very bad problem wst I font know nobody knows wst it is we need help w a professional will come in and inspect they want to put her in the physco ward they think she us crazy. No she not. She lost all her clothes she lost all her furniture cause of this bed bug or watever it is that’s going on. Please help us. A friend

    yes you can get diseses from bed bug bites :p

    i was wondering if these bedbugs bites can causes muscle spasms in adults and what kind of sickness would it be like a flue or some thing else and what kind of nerve damaged could it be in the adults and could it make the skin pigment to be eating on its self or not so i am just wondering and if any one can help me out with this please do so

    I am getting bit by something at night.
    But I am the only one with bites. My wide doesn’t have any.
    This has been happening for about 5 years and only for a couple weeks at the end of June.
    They bite for a couple weeks and then they are gone.

    Should have said where you live. Where do you live?

    Is there clear liquid with a bubble or yellowish liquid ?

    My doctor diagnosed me with scabies before we discovered a houseguest gave us a gift of bedbugs. During that time, I was told to buy Nix or other drugstore treatment for lice. The active ingredient starts with “pyr—“…Instead of following the package directions, leave it on your whole body from the neck down, for 12-14 hours, then strip your bed, wash the sheets and clothing in very hot water, and enjoy a long hot shower. I discovered that the exterminator used the same active ingredient on our bedbug problem, and ai also discovered that while I gave myself the treatment, it resulted in dead bedbugs. Good luck…I sincerely hope this works for you.

    Jackie, did you rub the contents of the live shampoo all over you!? And only for 12 hours. How did this kill the bug itself! Is it because when feeding it ate the pest!?

    I went to my friends house who knows she has bed bugs and stood in there for about 5 mins then we walked to cafe for coffee, i hugged her as we left and walked home. Later that evening about 7 hours since seeing her i itched my arm and found a little bite nark and as i itched more 5 more became noticable. They were skin coloured raised bumps and the skin around was red where i was itching and in the morning they were red! Straight away i took off all my clothes and threw them in the wash and hopped in the shower. Now i am so oaranoid i bought home a bed bug on my clothes and my whoke house is going to get infested as i will never find one bedbug until the problem gets bigger. I was sitting on my sofa and cleaning my whole house inbetween seeing my friend and finding the bites so if one was on my clothes it could be anywhere in my house. I took all the cushions off my sofa and sprayed all over with flea spray but im still so paranoid that there is this one bed bug in my house laying eggs and im not gonna know about it for weeks!

    Why is there no edit button? This webpage is not zoomable THUS too tiny to read.
    my bites are big like a mosquito. All over my body and still itching 2 weeks pass the beginning. Immediately left the house where I receive them after staying there for 2 nights since I have had no new bites just the same first ones are still itching two weeks since it started the doctor said bed bug bites are you sleeping here. I also had videos about the night it happened and the exterminator said it was a baby cockroach but on this website the picture they have of a bug looks like what I had videotaped.

    My question seems picky but as you know these little devils ARE in the details…: I read “How Long Does It Take Bites To Appear” with great interest and I really appreciate the information above. But now I need to know: can one person have some bites appear immediately and others appear a week later? Or does each person have a specific reaction? It’s important because I have been home from the hotel for a week and assuming that “new bites” means that I need to treat for an active infestation in my home. (Sob.) I.e., I had a few bites show up right away in the hotel, and a few more the next day, but in the week since then I have had many, many dozen bites show up daily. I assume(d) that that means that I need(ed) to treat for live bugs in my home (exhausting!). But I have yet to see a bug or any other signs (spots on sheets or bed) even though I examined my bed and suitcase with a magnifying glass. And my husband (who was not with me at the hotel) has not had any bites. So: am I treating for an infestation that does not really exist? THANKS for any input.

    I wish I could tell you!! I’m experiencing the same thing now. About 8 days after returning home from a camp trip in a cabin and a night in a hotel. First bites didn’t present until 5 days later and now I’m covered/miserable. Hubs doesn’t have any bites since I returned home, but I’m terrified I brought them home because I didn’t wash until a few days later. Any advice. What did you end up doing?

    My pest control technician just came to inspect my house since a lot of bites showed up after I stayed at a hotel, and then more kept showing up randomly days later. I’ve had difficulties sleeping because I keep thinking I’m being bitten, but I can’t see anything. She said the bite marks can continue to show up for 2 weeks AFTER being bitten. My house was clean, phew!

    I had my place treated for bed bugs as i had bites. I keep a very clean place so i was shocked to find 2 or 3 bed bugs on box spring after i lifted my mattress . The itch is what brought my attention. So i had a person come down and fumigate. 4 days later 1 rash on hand which is clearly a bit developing. can these bites be from before the fumigating and just took this long to show signs or do you think the exterminator did a bad chemical treatment?

    I have bed bugs.. I don’t think k it is bad now but what can I do to help it not spread threw the rest of the house I dont have money for exterminator

    I had my friend in my car the next day I started iching with bumps she say she got mosquitos in her apartment is it possible she gave me bed bugs I just got my apartment spray for bed bugs now I am getting the same night she get out my car

    Do the bedbugs leave their heads inside of you after they bite you? How long do they lay on you after they bite?

    Ticks embed their heads inside your body when they bite. When they are removed from a dog or such, if you are not careful you can leave part of them in your body when you remove them.

    However, bedbugs do not like heat, so other than feeding on your blood, they prefer to hide elsewhere & are not likely to stick in your hair or stay on your body for extended periods of time.

    No idk all I know is my body is tore up now from these horrible bite marks

    They keep their heads on and after they feast they usually go to the nearest crease, such as couches, box springs, mattresses, etc.

    Hello I’m suffering with bites all over my body they are causing me to bleed and swell up and I’m the only one in the house getting infected what should I do.. also the house was treated 3 time and still I’m getting bitten. What should I do it’s hurting and burning when I scrat

    I stayed at a Holiday Inn in Johnson City Friday Night a week ago. I woke Saturday Morning this week itching like crazY. I totally think it’s bedbugs. I took a video with my phone of a tiny red bug running along the white sheets. THEN I smooshed it and there was a blood spot.. that’s all a blood spot. Bedbug came to mind, but not knowing much about them I wasn’t sure.

    NOW I am. I read the bites can show up 10 days later. I itch like crazy, tried epsom salts, lemon, aloe.. everything. UGH. Some are swollen really huge, and my hand is covered. It traveled either from my neck down my chest and down my arm to my fingers, or vice versa. GROSS.

    I stayed at a hotel in Arkansas feeling just fine. But when I woke up, I was groggy, scratched my lower torso, and felt bumps! They were large, raised, and white (pretty similar to a mosquito bite). Through the day they started to turn into red splotches, in some spots they bruised into a deep purple (they , almost black in some areas. And after the first day, God, do they itch! The first encounter with the bumps happened Saturday morning, it’s now Tuesday morning, and I feel new, smaller bumps are appearing.

    It’s frustrating because sometimes, when I’m stressed, I get rashes. Well, I’m definitely stressed and completely paranoid there are bugs following me or are still on me– maybe burrowing in me? I don’t know if I’ll ever feel relaxed again! I immediately bagged my luggage and washed them with boiling hot water once I got home last night. Dried them for two full, high heat settings. But I’m paranoid they’re still around. Is it truly just a rash? Are they still around and biting me? I don’t get large bumps like I had on Saturday, but small, itchy rashes, with little bumps, are forming on my inner forearms. What looks like inflamed cat scratches have appeared in the initial areas on my lower torso, there’s one on my lower back/buttocks as well. I’m not scratching hard enough to break the skin (I scratch with my knuckles), there shouldn’t be scratch marks. Is it scabies? Is it just part of the reaction to the bites, can some of them be delayed? Maybe the scratches are striae from my skin ballooning? Is it something else!?

    The American healthcare system is garbage. I’m going to be so angry if it’s something that I can treat at home or with medication that can be bought OTC. I really am annoyed that I’ll be slapped with an $150 medical bill to go to an urgent care for something that could be potentially treated by myself. Hotels should really be held accountable for these matters– it’s disgusting! I’m going to job interviews and it’s really making things even more stressful than they need to be. I’m afraid to even shake people’s hand!

    I live in a house with many many people and 2 dogs. I am moving I have noticed there is bedbugs so I have been putting my clothes in trash bags and taking them to the Laundromats and leaving them in a new trash bag at my mothers house till I can move I also put my flatscreen TV in a trash bag at my moms in her garage I am throwing away my bed my tables and plastic dressers away but Im really worried putting all the infested stuff in my car in bags sealed as best as I can get it. Im really worried I could end up getting them in my car.I don’t have alot of money how would I go about treating my car the best way that’s also pretty cheap?

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