Bed Bugs

How to tell if you have Bed Bugs, Signs, How to Find them, Pictures

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Where do bed bugs come from? Where do they come from? Where do they bite? Get more insights on the causes, signs, bites and how to get rid of bed bugs fast.

How to tell if you have Bed Bugs

how to tell if you have bed bugs

bed bug picture

There are several numerous signs that can be a pointer to the fact that your home is infested with bed bugs. The following are among some of the signs:

  1. Nymphs

Bed bugs go through several life cycle stages. Until they reach adulthood they are known as nymphs. During their first cycle these nymphs are white colored and they get darker as they grow.

  1. Blood or rusty reddish stains

Since bed bugs insert an anesthetic and an anti-coagulant into their host skin when they feed, a person may bleed a bit. You can also find smears of blood or reddish stains of blood on your mattress, bed sheets, sofa or chair.

  1. Dark Fecal matter

Bed bugs leave fecal deposits after they consume a blood meal. They are often black dots as well as the tip of a pen that you can see on fabrics like a mattress or mattress cover.

  1. Sheds of skin

Bed bugs will molt and shed their skin before each new life stage. Often you can find these shaded skins lying around areas of infestation such as in creases in the mattress, around the edges, and in the crevices that serve as hiding places.

  1. Eggs and eggshells

Although bed bug eggs are very small and had to see, you can see the small whitish eggs. They are translucent and narrow. They can be found in mattress creases and other places where the insects can be found.

  1. Odor

In a house that has heavy infestation of bed bug there is often a bad odor.

  1. Live adults insects

Although they prefer to be active at night when you are sleeping, you can see live bed bugs if you search for them. They can be tough to find, however which is why it is highly recommended to act a pest control professional.

How to find Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are flat and can easily hide in almost any crevice or space. They can hide in the creases in your mattress and within the mattress covers. Other than the bed there are other hiding places where they rest between blood meals including:

  1. Headboards

They can hide behind headboards on the wall, and if the headboard is wood there can be cracks where they squeeze in. Eggs , fecal matter, nymphs and shed skins can also be found there.

  1. Luggage

Bed bugs are notorious travelers and if you stay in a hotel and put your luggage on the bed, there’s a chance one could hitch a ride and end up at your home.

  1. Sofas and chairs

Just because they are called bed bugs doesn’t mean they only hide out in the bedroom. If you spent time in a favorite chair or on the sofas you might find them in the creases and around the cushions and beneath the cushions.

  1. Electrical gadgets and appliances

Such as wall sockets and faceplates to find bed bugs remove and check behind them.

  1. Anywhere that can provide shelter

Bed bugs usually hide in piles of cloth or anywhere that can provide protection and shelter. If you have piles of clothes on the floor, in drawers, on the floor of the closet they can be hidden there. A dirty house does not mean you will get bed bugs, but one that is cluttered may hide them more easily.

  1. Dresser drawer joints

Check all of the nooks and crevices inside dresser drawers.

  1. Behind picture frames

Behind picture frames are good hiding places for bed bugs. So check anything that is hanging on the wall, especially above the beds, sofas and chairs, where the little insects can gather. Some of the signs listed above might be on the floor beneath the picture.

Where do Bed Bugs Come From?

When you visit a place that is already infested with bed bugs, it is likely that these bugs will cling onto your cloth, suitcases, bags, or any material they can hold on to. These notorious pests can easily move from their current home to new one and cause an outbreak. Be it a house, a hospital, or a hotel, they can show up anywhere.

Pictures of Bed Bugs on Mattress

Signs of Bed Bugs bite

What are bed bugs? Bed bugs are small flat oval-shaped insects. They do not have wings and rely on humans to carry them from one place to next. Bed bugs are a reddish- brown color and can be between 1 and 7 millimeters. They feed on blood from humans or animals, and they are most active at night, feeding on their victims while they sleep.

Symptoms of bed bug bite

Bed bug bites don’t always appear immediately after you are bitten. They sometimes take a few days to begin causing symptoms. It should also be noted that bed bugs don’t come out to feed every single night. In fact, they can go several days without eating. It may take a few weeks to notice that your bites are part of a larger pattern

Bed bug bites are often very itchy. You may experience a burning sensation on the skin several days after you have been bitten. You won’t feel the bugs bite on you because they excrete a tiny amount of anesthesia into your body before they bite. If you scratch the bite you may cause a secondary infection that can lead to swelling and bleeding.

How bed bug bites look like

Some people will not experience a reaction to a bed bug bite at all. Those that do experience symptoms of a bite are likely to experience one or more of the following:

  • Bite with a red, swollen area and a dark red center
  • Bites in a line or grouped together in a small area
  • Welts or Blisters or hives at bite site
  • A skin infection caused by scratching the itchy skin and allowing bacteria to enter the wound.

Bites can happen anywhere on the body. Most commonly they occur on areas of skin that are exposed while sleeping, such as the face, arms, legs and hands.

Where do Bed Bugs bite?

Bed bug bites are more clustered and often occur in a distinct bite pattern that can be described as being multiple and arranged in a linear or circular fashion. Common locations include the neck, chest, arms, around the crotch, face, back and legs.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs fast

Getting rid of bed bugs begins with thorough cleanliness of places where bed bugs live. This should include the following:

  • Vacuum your bed and surrounding areas frequently. After vacuuming, immediately place the vacuum cleaner bag in a plastic bag and place in a garbage can outdoors.
  • Encase mattress and box springs with a tightly woven, zippered cover to keep bedbugs from entering or escaping. Bed bugs may live up a year without feeding, so keep the cover on your mattress for at least a year to make sure all bugs in the mattress are dead.
  • Get rid of clutter around your bed
  • Repair cracks in plaster and glue down peeling  wallpapers to get rid of places bed bugs can hide
  • Use stiff brush to Scrub Mattress seams to remove bed bugs and their eggs before vacuuming.
  • Clean bedding, linen, curtains and clothing in hot water and dry them on highest dryer setting. Place stuffed animals, shoes and other items that can’t be washed in the dryer and run on high for 30 minutes.
  • If your mattress is heavily infested, you may want to get rid of it and get a new one, but take care to rid the rest of your home from bed bugs or they will infest your new mattress.

Home Remedies to get Rid of Bed Bugs

Diatomaceous earth

This is a powder that is effective for a quite a number of pests including bed bugs. It is made from tiny aquatic organisms and contains properties that absorb fat and oils from insects. If used on bed bugs it kills them by dehydrating them. Apply pure diatomaceous earth powder around the infested areas and eventually you will see dead bugs that can be vacuumed away .While it doesn’t kill bed bugs instantly but it has a high mortality rate at 96%, just sprinkle in the cracks and crevices that can otherwise be had to get to.

Before you use diatomaceous earth, wash all your linen in the hottest of water possible and vacuum your home thoroughly. When you are ready to sprinkle it onto affected areas like your bed and bedroom make sure to put on a mask.

After a few days, vacuum the powder up and repeat the entire process to ensure you get recently hatched bed bugs. Continue to follow to follow the process every few days for about two weeks.

Cayenne Pepper, Ginger , and Oregano Bed bug Fighting Spray

This homemade powder is highly effective when it comes to getting rid of bed bugs. The spiciness of cayenne and ginger are very potent and combined with the strong smell of Oregano essential oil that is known to drive away bed bugs, the results are always perfect.

To make the spray you will need the following ingredients:

  • 4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • 4 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 4 teaspoon of Oregon essential
  • 1 cup of water

Procedure:

  • Add the cayenne pepper, grated ginger, and oregano essential oil to the cup of water in a pan on the stove
  • Boil the for about 7 minutes
  • Strain the solution into a spray bottle and then spray it around any entry points of that room that has bed bugs as well as around bed frames and mattresses. You need to repeat this process till the problem has been resolved.

Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil is antibiotic, antiseptic, antifungal, expectorant and antimicrobial. It also has anti-parasitic properties, which is capable of destroying or suppressing their growth, these properties make tea tree oil effective in killing bed bugs and other insects.

To use tea tree oil:

  • Dilute 20 drops of pure tea tree oil in a spray bottle with water
  • Shake well to mix
  • Wash linens and any other fabrics in the hottest water possible
  • Spray the affected furnishings, mattresses, cabinets, curtains, cushions and other soft materials
  • Repeat the process once a week until the problem is totally eliminated.

Pepper mint leaves

You can also use peppermint leaves to get rid of bed bugs, peppermint has powerful bed repellant action.

  • To use peppermint leaves:
  • Crash up a handful of dry mint leaves
  • Add 2 cup of water and then spray the crushed leaves around infested areas.
  • Of course if you have a bigger problem, you may need two or three cups of the leaves.
  • Repeat once a week until the problem is gone, vacuuming up the old leaves that have lost their potency, replacing with new ones.

Black Walnut Tea

Black walnut tea offers antifungal, antibacterial and insecticidal repellant properties that can help to eliminate bed bugs.

To use black tea walnut:

  • Simply place used walnut tea bags strategically throughout your home, in all nooks and corners, mattresses and bedding to eliminate the bugs and their eggs.

Lavender / peppermint oil pesticide spray

Lavender similar to tea tree oil can make an excellent spray for killing bed bugs. Lavender oil has antiseptic and insect-repellant properties that are highly effective in eliminating bed bugs.

One study that looked at effects of essential oils and their use on insects and bug control discovered that a combination of lavender oil and peppermint oil managed to effectively kill insects.

Lavender oil in particular is known to destroy the eggs and larvae of bed bugs as well as repelling the bed bugs. Peppermint also offers a powerful repellent action.

To use lavender /peppermint oil spray:

  • Fill a bottle of 500ml with water and add about 15 drops of lavender essential oil
  • Add 15 drops of peppermint oil
  • Shake the mixture well
  • Spray all the infested areas of your home

Baking soda

Baking soda works by effectively drying out the bed bugs; it sacks moisture from them and ultimately kills them.

To use baking soda:

  • Spread a light layer of baking soda throughout the infested areas in the room.
  • Allow the baking soda to sit for 4 days
  • Suck up all the baking soda with vacuum cleaner to ensure that there are no eggs or bed bugs anywhere.

Vacuum Everything

Vacuuming everything at your can possibly help to eliminate bed bug infestation. Ensure you vacuum all chairs and other soft furnishings, all carpets, box spring and mattresses as well as mattress encasements and even curtains. Bed bugs can basically be hiding anywhere and everywhere, including upholstered furniture and especially in obscure places. It’s actually not all that uncommon to discover them in electric appliances too. Vacuum all rooms thoroughly, at least once a week, leaving no stone unturned. Dispose of the vacuum bag, outside, after you finish vacuuming the area.

Steam Cleaning

Steam cleaning using high temperature heat is very effective in killing insects such as bed bugs and their eggs. The best thing about steam cleaning is that the heat treatment penetrates deep into the fabric and it also reaches areas that would otherwise be impossible to get to, like small cracks, crevices and corners.

You can buy a small handle held steam cleaner that has strong vapor flow or rent a professional steam cleaner. The devices come with multiple different attachments that will help you access even the most troublesome spots.

Use basil leaves

Basil leaves with antiseptic, anti-microbial and insect repellent properties. These properties are highly effective especially when basil leaves are used to get rid of bed bugs.

To use basil leaves:

  • Take a handful of dry basil leaves and then ground them into powder form
  • Add the powder to 3 cups of Boil water
  • Allow the mixture to steep.
  • Using a spray bottle spray all bed bug infested areas at your home

Inspect the whole house

Prevention and early detection are your best resources a bed bug infestation, so you will need a flashlight and a mirror.

Remember that bed bugs are too small and eggs invisible by human eye. Most bed bugs are found on and around mattresses and bed frames, so start there.

To inspect bed bugs in your house consider the following:

  • Carefully inspect the mattresses and the box springs for each bed in your home. Don’t forget to lift the mattress and the box spring checking underneath and in all seams.
  • Look for bed bug feces- rusty brown smudges or spots that look like dried blood
  • Check all crevices and cracks in your bed frame. Even better, take the bed frame apart for a thorough inspection
  • Inspect the headboard and behind it.

Further references:

  1. How to get rid of stubborn insects like bed bugs https://wellnessmama.com/128305/bed-bugs/
  2. How to get rid of bed bugs domyownpestcontrol.com/how -to-get-rid-of-bed-bugs-a-449.html
  3. Bed bug bites https://www.epa.gov/bedbugs/do-it-yourself-bed-bug-control
  4. how to treat bed bugs at home https://www.bedbugsupply.com/how-to-get-rid-of-bed-bugs-in-4-steps.html
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