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Bed Bugs

Actual Size: 4-5mm (Adults)

Characteristics: Reddish brown, oval-shaped insects. Typically flat, and the size of an apple seed. There has been a sharp increase in bed bugs since the 2000s.

Behavior:

  • Bed bugs feed primarily on human blood.
  • Because of their small size and flat bodies, bed bugs can fit into narrow spaces.
  • Typically nocturnal, though known to be active in the daytime if hungry.

 

Category:

Pest Description

Bed Bug Behavior

Bed bugs feed exclusively on blood, and typically human blood. Primarily nocturnal, bed bugs will adapt to the sleeping patterns of their chosen hosts. They live in cracks, crevices, and other small spaces. seeking locations that allow them access to sleeping hosts. Bed bugs can move both horizontally and vertically very quickly. Bed bugs will infest box springs, headboards, and mattresses, but have also been found in furniture, pillows, picture frames–any place that their hosts spend long periods of time. Bed bugs can also travel in luggage, bags, backpacks, and any other item taken in and out of the house. Finding the origin point for an infestation is nearly impossible.

Problems Caused by Bed Bugs

Although they do not carry disease, bed bugs can cause significant mental distress, as well as physical symptoms from the bites themselves. Not everyone has the same reaction to a bed bug bite; bites can cause a range of symptoms, including rashes, swelling,  and even hives. Some people will also have delayed reactions to bed bugs, becoming symptomatic days or weeks after initial exposure. Once bed bugs have infested an area, they are extremely difficult to get rid of, contributing to psychological stress.

Preventing Bed Bugs

The resurgence of bed bugs in the United States has become a significant issue for both urban and rural areas. Bed bugs are extremely difficult to see and eliminate, and their eggs are even more difficult to eradicate. Bed bugs can go a week or longer without food, and in some radical conditions, can even go months in between meals. Frequent changing of bedding, vacuuming of mattresses and furniture, and semi-regular inspections can spot a bed bug problem before it becomes an infestation. Bites are not a good indication of an infestation, as not all people react in the same way.

Controlling and Eliminating Bed Bugs.

Inspection of mattress and furniture areas is the first step in controlling or eliminating bed bugs. There are a number of insects that can mimic or replicate bed bug indications. Once a thorough inspection has taken place, a professional should be called in to determine the scope of the infestation, and the best method of treatment. Chemical and thermal treatments appear to be the most effective against bed bugs. A well-constructed mattress encasement is great way to control or prevent issues with bed bugs, as the majority of infestations are associated with mattresses and box springs. Lastly, a follow-up inspection is crucial to ensure the bed bug infestation has been eliminated and treated correctly, as bed bugs can and will re-infest a location. At Pest Control Inc, we offer all three of these considerations as part of an individual treatment plan.