Don’t Let the Bed Bugs Bite

Savannah Anderson - August 30, 2019

From left to right: Egg to Adult Full of Blood

 

Bed bugs (pictured left) likely get their name from their habit of feeding on humans while they sleep in their beds. They are found in virtually every place people tend to gather, including homes, hotels, schools, offices, retails stores, and even public transportation. The good news is bed bugs do not transmit diseases, but their bites can become red, itchy welts.

 

 

 

Signs of Bed bugs:

Bed bugs are about the shape and color of a very small to medium sized apple seed. This means that they are small but it is possible to see them without the use of a magnifier. Beside visual confirmation of a bed bug you can look for the following signs:

  • Black-rusty-reddish fecal spots sheets, mattresses and/or box springs
  • Pale yellow  skins that have been shed by growing bed bugs

 

 

Bed Bug Prevention:

There are a few ways you can help prevent your home from getting bed bugs.

  1. While traveling:
    • Upon arrival at destination:
      1. Place your suitcase in the bathtub (bed bugs have a hard time climbing up smooth surfaces).
      2. Inspect the mattress and box spring by gently peeling back the covers into the middle of the bed. Look for signs of bed bugs. Definitely check the seams and don’t forget those plastic corner guards – bed bugs LOVE those hiding spots!

 

  • Upon returning home:
    1. Place your suitcase in the bathtub and unpack it, shaking each item into the bathtub (bed bugs are hitchhikers and can be shaken off clothing easily, and bathtubs are usually light colored and bed bugs are darker colored, so you should be able to see them easily).
    2. If you have any suspect items, place them in the dryer on high-heat setting for 20-ish minutes (anything above 125 degrees Fahrenheit will kill all stages of bed bugs).

  1. While at home:
    • Never bring second-hand furniture, especially mattresses and box springs, into a home without thoroughly examining for signs of bed bugs.
    • Bed bugs like humans best, but do feed upon pets, so regularly check where pets rest and sleep.