How Long Can Bed Bug Eggs Live

Bed Bug Life Cycle

Bed bugs are nocturnal, reddish-brown insects that feed on the blood of humans and other warm-blooded animals. These wingless insects have dorsoventrally flattened bodies that allow them to hide in areas such as floor cracks, carpets, beds and upholstered furniture.

A bed bug’s life begins with an egg, grain like and milky white in color. Female bed bugs lay between one and five eggs each day and may lie up to 500 eggs within one lifetime. Eggs are laid singly or in clusters and are placed within tight cracks or crevices. The egg is approximately 1 mm in length and is comparable in size to two grains of salt. Within two weeks, eggs hatch and immature bed bugs begin immediately to feed.


These young bed bugs, or nymphs, pass through five molts before reaching maturity. Although nymphs appear similar to adults, they are smaller in size and are not yet sexually mature. Young nymphs are also yellow-white in color, while older nymphs and adults are reddish-brown. In order to complete a molting stage, each nymph requires a blood meal. At room temperature, nymphs molt and become adults within five weeks.


Upon reaching maturity, bed bug adults often make weekly feedings.

Adult Bed Bug

How Long Do They Live?
The life span of a bed bug most commonly ranges from four to six months. However, some bed bugs may live up to a year under cool conditions and with no food.

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.


How long can bed bugs live without blood? The answer depends on the age of the bed bug, if it is resistant to certain pesticides and the temperature range it is exposed to. “How long can bed bugs live without feeding before becoming adults?” is the first question to ask yourself.

A newly hatched bed bug is called a nymph. Nymphs go through five stages before becoming mature adults. When a bug molts, it sheds its skin. Immature bed bugs molt five times before reaching maturity and must feed in between every molt. For that reason, nymphs must feed more often. Despite their young age, newly hatched bed bugs can still survive for at least a few weeks without feeding.

But if nymphs can survive weeks without feeding, how long can bed bugs live without blood after maturity? That depends. When living in warm conditions, bed bugs will usually try to feed at regular intervals. Adult bed bugs can survive for about five months without a blood meal.

Once the bed bug settles on a host, it will feed for a few minutes. Length of feeding depends on the stage of development, how much it ate last time and how long it’s been since it last fed. After the bed bug is full, it will leave the host and return to a crack or crevice, typically where other bed bugs are gathered.

Bed bugs usually feed every three to seven days, which means that most of the population is in the digesting state, and not feeding much of the time. However, because bed bug infestations can spread so rapidly, it can often feel like you are waking up with new bites every morning. This can lead to high stress levels and a lack of sleep.

Don’t let bed bugs get the best of you. A pest control specialist can help you kick bed bugs out of your house and keep them out.

Polanco AM, Miller DM, Brewster CC. Survivorship During Starvation for Cimex lectularius L.. Insects. 2011; 2(2):232-242.

How Long Can Bed Bugs Live Without A Host? (A Simple Answer)

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​Bed bugs are a very frustrating problem for lots of homeowners especially across many states in the United States.

Their excellent adaptability to a wide range of climates and their rate of reproduction have earned these parasites a notorious reputation throughout the country.

Because they get bitten every night by these nasty and stubborn parasites, a lot of homeowners are drawn into the wrong conclusion that leaving the house for a few days can starve the bed bugs to death or at least force them out of the property in search for a new host.

But does it really work?

​The bed bugs’ ability to survive without a host depends on a number of factors. And understanding these critical elements can help you land on the ultimate answer to the question.

​How Does A Bed Bug Feed?

​Before we can really answer the main question, it is best that we first take into consideration how a bed bug feeds.

As we all now know, bed bugs don’t have a chewing mouth part that help them burrow deep into our skin. Instead, these parasites are equipped with a needle like proboscis which they use to pierce through our skin and into the nearest blood vessel.

Prior to feeding, the bed bug excretes an ample amount of saliva which acts as an anesthetic component. It numbs the nerves of the skin surrounding the target area so that the victim doesn’t feel a thing. The be bug’s saliva also acts as an anticoagulant which helps keep the blood flowing as it feeds.

​Is Blood The Only Type Of Meal bed Bugs Prefer?

​Yes. Blood is the only type of nourishment bed bugs require and accept. They can’t and will not feed on anything else other than a thirst quenching blood meal.

Bed bugs need blood for them to molt and to develop full sexual maturity. Proteins and other nutrients found in their host’s blood is essential for the development of their eggs.

The following video is a close up documentary on how a bed bug bites and feeds.

​A blood meal from a human host is what bed bugs prefer. These nasty buggers are significantly attracted to us because of the heat signature that our bodies give off and the carbon dioxide that we exhale. But in the absence of a human host, bed bugs acquire blood meal from animals nearby.

​How Often And How Long Does A Bed Bug Feed?

​When an egg hatches, a nymph emerges. This nymph requires at least one blood meal to molt into the higher stage of its life. The nymph undergoes several molting process (less than two months) before it reaches full maturity.

Nymphs usually take about 5 minutes to feed. Adults on the other hand, may take around 10 minutes per feeding session. It then retreats to a safe spot for digestion of the blood meal it has acquired from its host.

Both nymph and adult bed bugs feed only once per week. If you get bitten by these critters every night, it simply means that you have a sizeable bed bug population to deal with.

​How Long Can A Bed Bug Survive Without Feeding?

​Basically, bed bugs can survive from several months to a full year without a host. But this survivability directly depends on a few factors.

​Adult bed bugs can survive longer compared to the younger ones or nymphs. The absence of a host for a blood meal doesn’t hinder the nymphs from developing into full adults.

Rather, it drastically decreases the amount of time needed for nymphs to reach full maturity. Nymphs become adult bed bugs in just about a month resulting to significantly weaker insects.

Temperature of the direct environment also plays a crucial role on how long a bed bugs survives without a host. Under normal room temperature, adult bed bugs can linger for a year. Increased temperature on the other hand, remarkably decreases the total length of time a bed bug can survive without a host.

Read More Bed Bug Answers

Check out our other bed bug guides. Each guide is expertly crafted to help you make sure these pests never bother you again.

Can Bed Bugs Live in your Clothes or Hair All Day?

Do bed bugs hide in clothes? This seems to be the question most people ask, especially for those who do not understand how these bugs spread from one person to the other. In this article, I seek to present the answer to the question:Can bed bugs live in clothes?

How Do Bed Bugs Spread from Person to Person?

Bed bugs spread from one person to another in the clothing or luggage of travelers. The bugs are picked up from infested areas, particularly in public places such as motel rooms. They are then carried back to your place of residence.

In the case of an exceptionally serious infestation, these insects travel through on pipes, ceiling openings, floor, and wall within buildings.

Another method they are transmitted into your home is through bringing second-hand items such as furniture at home.

Can Bed Bugs Live in your Hair?

Never, bed bugs can hide in your hair to move from place to another, but can’t stay there for long. First, you need to understand that these bugs rarely hang out in your hair or on your skin. They like to nest in an area that is out of sight unless when they are feeding.

In the event that you see them crawling on you the whole day, it’s probable that what you are dealing with are lice, ticks, or fleas, as opposed to bed bugs.

You are unlikely to find them in your hair since, unlike ticks and lice which have claws that help them to traverse in hair.

Can you carry Bed Bugs in your Hair?

It is possible if you have long and covered hair. In most cases, they cannot navigate in your hair since they lack claws for doing that.

Bed Bugs in Hair Pictures

Here are some of the pictures you may not want to see showing bed bugs in hair. The tiny nature of bed bugs may sometimes make them hard to spot when crawling in the hair.

How to Kill Bed Bugs in Hair Using Natural Methods

There are several natural ways you can completely get rid of bed bugs in hair. First, you need to know that sometimes it’s extremely difficult to make your home proof from these bugs once they infest your rooms. They are hardy insects known to thrive under any prevailing condition, live long without feeding, and reproduce at an alarming rate.

Although there are chemical extermination choices in your local market, a few people would like to have their rooms sprayed with chemicals.

Also, with time, the bugs have become resistant to some extermination chemicals. This is really proving to be a big issue in homes.

But, here is the option to deal with this issue head-on:

  1. Inspect your home repeatedly

Early detection of these bugs and prevention are your best resources you have to fight or kill bed bug infestation. Therefore, don’t hesitate. First, get a mirror and a flashlight.

These tools will help you spot the tiny and small eggs of these insects which your naked eyes cannot see.

The possible areas of infestation and look at include bed frames, around mattresses, and any place that is cracked or has crevices. So, start there.

  1. Remove any spotted Bed Bugs physically

Start a war against the bugs by flicking them out of their hiding areas using a business card. Use a paper towel to crush them. Catch them using a sticky tape or vacuum them up. Use any possible means to get rid of them.

  1. Dry-clean all your Bedclothes

Collect all your bedding or any other suspicious washable clothing or items close to the sleeping region, including sheets, blankets, pillow, and stuffed animals. Wash them and dry in hot series. The high heat will eliminate all the eggs and bugs.

  1. Freeze it if washing the Infested Items is not possible

Some household items cannot be washed. In such an event, put such things in a freezer and set the temperature extremely low. That will kill both the eggs and bugs as well.

  1. Vacuum Exhaustively

Another choice you have is to vacuum your rooms including all likely places for their hideout. Repeat this process for some weeks daily if these insects seriously infest the home. Immediately through away the vacuum sack far away from your compound.

  1. Try Using Essential Oils

Orange oil, cedar oil, and tea tree oil are known to exterminate the bugs on contact. Combine the oils with water and spray the mixture on the affected area using a spray bottle. Do this daily until you are sure that they are completely killed.

Bedbugs Spray for Clothes

Are therebed bug repellent for clothes? Well, yes, there are many sprays one can use to get rid of bed bugs on clothes. There are many sprays you can use to do that.

Examples of the sprays used to protect clothes from bed bugs include:

  1. FabriClear Bed Bug Spray
  2. Harris Bed Bug Killer
  3. EcoRaider Bed Bug Killer Spray
  4. RestEasy Environmentally friendly Bed bug spray

Can Bed Bugs Stay on Your Clothes All Day?

It’s most unlikely but possible that bed bugs can stay on your clothes all day. There exist several myths about these mysterious bugs. First, you should know that they exclusively live in hidden places such as mattresses.

They are a misnomer and terribly nondiscriminatory in nature. They can be found at any place or location. They can travel on your body, including on top of your clothes.

However, they don’t like heat and thus, would probably hide inside your clothes close to the heat of your body. They mostly travel on items further removed from the body, such as shoes, luggage, and backpacks.

How Long Do Bed Bugs Live on Clothes

The question on the number of days or months bed bugs stay on clothes may have varying answers depending on several other factors. For example, the answer depends on whether or not the clothes in question are worn regularly or if they are left untouched for several months.

If bed bugs infect you your clothing, and you d wear them on a regular basis, then bed bugs will stay in the clothes forever till the day you get rid of all of them using pest control methods.

However, if you abandon clothes infested by bed bugs in the wardrobe and stay away from the house, then ned bugs would die naturally at the end of their lifespan due to a lack of food (blood). On average a bed bug has a lifespan of 4 to 6 months. That then means it would take about 6 months for bed bugs living in your clothes to die out.

FAQs on Bed Bugs in Clothes

Below are the frequently asked questions about bed bugs in clothes. In this section, we seek to address all aspects of this issue exhaustively:

Can you Carry Bed Bugs in your Clothes? Do bed bugs travel in clothes?

Of course, you can carry bed bugs in your clothes. However, they will likely hide inside the clothes because they don’t like being exposed to heat. They would rather be close to body heat. So check your clothes properly, bed bugs may be traveling in your clothes!

Do you have to Wash Your Clothes if you Have Bed Bugs?

Yes, you can definitely wash your clothes if you think they are infested with bed bugs. But, you should expose the cleaned clothes to hot air to kill the remaining bugs.

Can Bed Bugs Survive in the Washing Machine?

It is possible, but it depends on the set temperature of the machine. Extreme temperatures kill all the bugs.

Do bed bugs eat clothes?

Well, bed bugs do not bite clothes. Unlike cockroaches or rats, bed bugs just stain the clothes with their feces and eggshells

Bed Bugs on Clothes Pictures

Here are some of the rare pictures of bed bugs on clothes you will ever come across. As you can see in the picture, bed bugs tend to crowd in a corner where they lay eggs and reproduce rapidly.

Bed bugs on Clothes

How to Eliminate Bed Bugs in Laundry!

The cheap and simple way to get rid of bed bugs is through washing bedding and clothes. It’s a critical way to control them.

Laundry may eliminate some of the bugs but not all. It’s the drying heat, which may kill the remaining eggs and bugs. Using a couple of commonsense practices, your clothes can easily be disinfected. But the question remains,how do you get bed bugs out of your clothes?

Well, here are key laundry steps you can use to control bed bugs in your clothes:

These steps encompass: organizing clothes; doing laundry and exposing to air or heating; and keeping washed, clean clothes.

  1. Arranging garments:
  • Pre-sort your clothes in the infested location using the same procedure during your normal laundry and place each of the sorted clothes in its plastic bag. Follow the washing and drying processes discussed above.
  • Isolate the clothes that are dry and clean to avoid making them wet. You can as well dry them in a dryer.
  • Cover the plastic bags before moving your washing. By doing so, it will help in preventing the transfer of the bugs into other places not infested either in the Laundromat or your home.
  1. Doing Laundry and Exposing your Clothes to Air or Heat:
  • Into your dry-clean-only, dryer, or washer, tip each bag.
  • After emptying each bag, fold and wrap the paper with the opening being at the center.
  • Put the emptied sacks into a clean one immediately and deal before disposing of them.
  • On the hottest temperature, wash and dry your wear.
  • Use dryer or dry-clean-only where possible following the right procedure.
  1. Keeping the Cleaned Clothes:
  • Immediately you remove the clothes from the dryer, fold them. Don’t or avoid spreading the clean and dry clothes on the table before inspecting to see whether it has bed bugs.
  • Keep in bags the clean clothes until you get at your residence or home.
  • Put away your clothes from laundry after ensuring that you have successfully eliminated the bugs.
  • Otherwise, store the folded laundry the plastic sack and take away garments as required. This way, you will prevent re-infesting the clothes.

Where Do Bed Bugs Hide On Your Body?

Bed bugs.Chances are good that you’ve heard of them, or even had a friend who has had a run-in with these pests that love to bite humans, feeding on their blood and leaving an itchy, painful rash behind. For most of us, the idea of bed bugs sends a shiver of fear up the spine, yet many people don’t actually know much about this insect, its habitat or its habits.

Can you find bed bug eggs in hair, and are these pests able to live on clothing or our body? Do they fly or cause diseases? And how difficult are they to get rid of, once they’ve invaded your living space? The more you know about bed bugs, the better you can protect yourself and your home from a bed bug infestation.

A very common question homeowners ask is “Where do bed bugs hide on your body?”, so let’s address this query first. The main time bed bugs are hiding is during the day, when they fit into the smallest crack and crevices in areas where people sleep. These areas tend to be close to where they can feed during the nighttime hours and could be in a crack or another narrow, protected space in a bed frame, couch box spring, mattress, recliner or your headboard.

Since bed bugs can multiply quickly, these pests can move onto other parts of your home if not controlled, making elimination extremely difficult. As we will discuss throughout this post, as we address other frequently asked questions, bed bugs do not hide on humans because they prefer a cooler, safer environment. So, they actually don’t hide on your body. After they have taken their blood meal, bed bugs will retreat into a safe location to begin the process of digesting, which can take quite some time before they strike again.

If bed bugs don’t live on your body, can they live in your hair? Let’s explore this question next.

Symptoms Of Bed Bugs In Hair

Can bed bugs live in your hair? The short answer isno. That’s not to say they can’t bite you on your scalp, forehead, cheeks or neck, but bed bugs’ legs and bodies aren’t designed for crawling through human hair. Plus, they prefer a cooler environment than that created by human body heat, so even if they do happen to feed on the skin of your head or neck, they aren’t likely to stick around afterward.

Bed bugs can bite you on the legs, hands and arms, but are more likely to feed on your neck and head. One reason these bugs are so sneaky is that their bite doesn’t hurt, so an affected person doesn’t often notice until and unless they have a reaction. A bed bug will most likely get you on the face, since they prefer bare skin. S ymptoms of bed bugs in hair might include red, intensely itchy welts along your hairline or across your forehead, cheeks or neck and small dots of blood on your pillow. Again, though, bed bugs don’t typically take up residence in human hair the way lice or fleas might, and they typically bite skin that is exposed, not covered by hair. Thus, if you do have insect bites on your scalp, it’s less likely to be a bed bug than some other insect.

After two to five minutes of feeding, the bed bug will retreat to the closest hiding spot, where it will begin the digestion process, which can take several weeks. After that point, the bed bug can lay eggs which are about the size of a grain of sugar. Since bed bugs don’t live on humans, they also won’t lay their eggs on humans, so you won’t have to worry about getting bed bug eggs in your hair.

Can Bed Bugs Live On Your Body?

While travelers are known to carry bed bugs with them from one destination to the next, these insects are highly unlikely to hitchhike on your body, in your hair or in the clothes you’re wearing. Instead, they’re far more likely to hitch a ride in the clothes youaren’twearing—that is, the ones in your luggage or backpack. That’s why it’s so important to take prompt measures if you suspect you’ve stayed, slept or stored your belongings in a bed bug-infested room on a trip.

If you’re traveling and you suspect you’ve stayed in a room or traveled on a bus or train that was infested with bed bugs, it’s important to wash every bit of your clothing as soon as possible, in the hottest water available, and then dry them on the highest setting. Both high temperatures and steam kill bed bugs, so these steps should get rid of the problem. Use a flashlight to inspect your shoes, bag and other items as well, paying extra attention to the small folds and corners . You might need to dispose of your suitcase and get a new one.

Bed Bug Bites On Scalp: Pictures And Description Of Affected Area

Bed bugs tend to leave several bites in a row which become itchy, red and irritated. As we already mentioned, these pests prefer to feed on bare skin, so it’s more likely that you will notice a bite on your arms, legs or neck rather than your scalp. The most obvious exception to that rule is if you are bald.

While many victims of bed bug infestations experience allergic reactions to the bites, some have no symptoms, other than small dots where the creature feeds. Some people notice a clear raised center on the affected area. In the most severe cases, individuals may experience nausea, blisters, fever and difficulty breathing after being bitten.

You can see photographs of bed bug bites on the website of the Environmental Protection Agency, in a clinical review by the Journal of the American Medical Association and in an informational report on integrated pest management to control bed bugs. In these images, you will notice that bed bug bites resemble mosquito and flea bites, which is why bites from all of these insects can often be confused.

Bed Bug Facts

After being all but eradicated in the 1940s and ’50s,Cimex lectularius—otherwise known as bed bugs—began making a resurgence all over the world in the early 2000s due to the insect’s growing resistance to commonly used insecticides. Full-grown bed bugs are small, only about a quarter-inch in diameter —about the size of an apple seed. Reddish-brown in color, bed bugs have banded, oval-shaped abdomens that can turn bright red after feeding, when they’re full of blood. Since they are so small and flat , they can slip into spaces that are as narrow as a credit card. Similarly, they’re often able to go undetected in the folds of mattresses or armchairs, beneath rugs and in other furniture and living spaces. Since these pests live indoors, there is no “high” or “low” season for bed bugs.

Bed bugs are mostly nocturnal and seem to be most active in the wee hours of the morning. Still, they have been known to bite during the daytime as well. Unfortunately, bed bugs seem to be impervious to most commonly used insecticides and bug repellent sprays (the kind you would use, for example, to repel mosquitoes and ticks), so spraying your bed or your skin before bedtime won’t help you avoid the bite of this pesky little nuisance.

It’s important to know that bed bug infestations are not due to an unsanitary environment. Even the cleanest homes and hotels can be prone to an infestation since bed bugs do not live in filth—they live off the blood of mammals, including humans. So wherever humans (and other mammals) live, bed bugs can live happily, too, even if it is kept immaculately clean.

How To Know If Bed Bugs Are In Your Home

Travelers know bed bugs can live and hide in many places besides the bed itself. Bed bug infestations can also spread to upholstered couches and chairs, not to mention trains, buses and other areas. Bed bugs can also crawl up walls, hide behind picture frames or headboards or sneak into the cracks and corners of furniture drawers.

The same inspection technique you use when traveling might help you determine whether you have a bed bug infestation in your home, but eradicating the insects from your living space is likely to be much more difficult and costly than just ridding them from your overnight bag after a trip. Signs of a bed bug infestation in your home include, first and foremost, itchy bites that appear in lines on your skin. Other signs you might find in your bed, on walls or on other furniture include blood spots on sheets and mattresses, dead bugs or exoskeletons, pale whitish or yellow nymphs (baby bed bugs) and bits of the insects’ dark, blood-filled excrement. (Yuck!)

The Good News About Bed Bugs (Yes, There Is Some!)

When it comes to bed bugs, it’s not all bad news. Here’s the good part: first, unlike mosquitoes or some other pests, bed bugs are not carriers of infectious diseases . So even if you do have bed bug bites, you won’t pick up with any nasty bacteria or illness beyond the effects of the bites themselves. Another bit of good bed bug news is that they don’t reproduce very quickly —not as quickly as certain other pests, anyway, such as cockroaches or flies. And speaking of flying insects, since bed bugs can’t fly , at least you’ll only have to deal with them crawling on you, not zipping airborne into your hair.

Okay, maybe calling that last bit “good news” is a bit of a stretch. And when bed bugs infest your home, any way you look at it, they’re bad news. In fact, pest professionals call bed bugs the most difficult pest to treat. If the professionals have trouble, the average homeowner may find it nearly impossible to eradicate bed bugs without calling in the experts.

ABC Can Rid Your Home of Bed Bugs

If you suspect you might have bed bugs in your home, the best thing you can do is to call ABC immediately to schedule a service. Our experienced, professional team will conduct a thorough inspection to determine whether it’s bed bugs or some other pest that has invaded your home. Then we will eliminate the problem using methods that are proven to get rid of bed bugs, once and for all.

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