header background image
Current Weather 54° F
  • Bed Bugs

     

    Bed bugs are small insects that feed on the blood of mammals and birds. Adult bed bugs are oval, wingless, rusty red-colored, have flat bodies, antennae and small eyes. They are visible to the naked eye, but often hide in cracks and crevices. When bed bugs feed (usually at night when people are sleeping) their bodies swell and become a brighter red.

    What does a bed bug bite feel and look like?

    Typically, the bed bugs bite is painless and rarely awakens a sleeping person; however, it can produce large, itchy welts on the skin.

    • Welts from bed bug bites do not have a red spot in the center.
    • Bed bugs normally do not reside on people like head or body lice. Immediately after feeding they crawl off and reside elsewhere.
    • Although bed bugs may be a nuisance to people, they are not known to spread disease. They are known to cause allergic reactions from their saliva in sensitive people.

     

    How does a home become infested with bed bugs?

    • These bugs are efficient hitchhikers and are usually transported in on luggage, clothing, beds, furniture, and other items.
    • In apartment buildings, town homes, hotels or other connected dwellings bed bugs can migrate from one infested unit into another via electrical wiring, plumbing and adjoining walls.

     

    How do I know if my home is infested with bed bugs?

    • Waking up with red, itchy welts on you or your family member’s skin. A pattern of three bites in a row is a reported characteristic of a bed bug bites.
    • Visual sightings of bed bugs themselves or small bloodstains from crushed bed bugs.
    • In more severe infestations, bed bugs may spread to cracks and crevices in bed frames and box springs, behind headboards, inside nightstands, behind baseboards, window and door casings, pictures, nearby furniture, loosened wallpaper, and cracks in plaster and flooring.
    • The level of cleanliness has little to do with most bed bug infestations. Pristine homes, hotels and apartments have plenty of hiding places and an abundance of warm-blooded hosts.

     

    What can I do to control the infestation?

    Bed bugs are difficult pests to control and elimination is not always a certainty. An integrated program of chemical and non-chemical measures, followed by monitoring, is recommended in trying to eradicate bed bugs.

    A professional pest controller should be consulted to perform a thorough evaluation. Experienced pest control firms know where to look for bed bugs, and they have an assortment of management tools at their disposal.

    Can I prevent bed bugs from entering my home?

    Some infestations can be prevented by washing clothing and bedding immediately after returning from a trip.

    • Inspect all used beds, sofas or upholstered chairs and bedding for signs of bed bugs before bringing them into your home.
    • Never bring discarded bed frames, mattresses, box springs or upholstered furniture into your home.

     

     

     

    Last Updated: 4-24-2013
  • Bed Bugs Resource Documents