Everyone has heard the nightmare stories of beds crawling with tiny little bugs. These little nuisances leave behind lots of itchy little bites and unfortunately tend to be hard to spot.
It can be hard to know when bedbugs have made their home in your bed. It can be even harder to know how to kill bedbugs once you’ve spotted them.
That’s why we’ve assembled this guide with everything you need to know about these little creatures. We’ll cover all the major signs of bedbugs, as well as the best ways to get rid of them, so you’ll never have an itchy night again.
What are Bedbugs?
Bedbugs are small, brown insects. They’re flat in shape and invasive in nature. They feed on the blood of you and your pets to stay alive.
You can detect these bugs due to their distinct appearance. They have a reddish-brown exoskeleton and measure roughly 1mm – 7mm in length. Their tiny size can make them quite difficult to spot.
Bedbugs can actually go several months without food, but when they have a source as juicy as you or your pets, they’ll feast off your blood.
Unfortunately, they also breed quite quickly. Female bugs can lay up to 500 eggs throughout their lives. That means small infestations can turn pretty serious in no time at all.
Common Signs of Bedbugs
It’s best to catch bedbugs early on in their infestation when there aren’t too many of them. However, this isn’t always possible.
There are some common early signs of bedbugs that you should be aware of, though. These include:
1. Live Bugs or Their Droppings
Obviously, if you see a bug that matches the description above, you’ll know you’re in trouble. However, the things bedbugs leave behind are also a good indicator that they’re in your home.
Some physical evidence of bedbugs can include:
- Fecal marks
- Shell casings
These will usually look like black or brown spots with no known cause. Their shell casings will be crunch and reddish-brown, the same color as the live bugs.
2. Tiny Blood Stains
If you notice small blood stains on your sheets, clothing, or mattress, it could be because a bedbug was having a delicious feast during the night. Blood stains will usually appear red or rust-colored.
Before you decide to pin these blood stains on bedbugs, though, make sure there’s no other probable cause. For example, menstruation or small cuts can also be responsible.
3. Little Bites or Bumps
Small bumps, bites, or welts on the skin can be another huge sign you have an infestation afoot. Bites usually occur around the legs, arms, or hands as you’re less likely to have clothes covering these areas at night.
Many times, these bites will cluster together. If you see 3 or 4 bites in a line and they’re only appearing at night, that’s a pretty good sign you’ve got bugs.
Symptoms of bedbugs and their bites can include:
- Itchy skin
- Raised welts or bumps
- Clusters of bites, especially around the arms and legs
4. A Musty Odor
Bedbugs can have quite a musty odor. Some people even describe it as a “locker room smell.”
If you keep your home impeccably clean but start to notice a strange musk coming from your bed, you may want to inspect for bedbugs. Small infestations are usually described as having smells such as:
While larger infestations tend to start to smell like:
- Moldy towels
- Wet laundry
Any of these signs would warrant an inspection of your sleeping area.
How Do You Get Rid of Bedbugs Once You Spot Them?
Bedbugs can multiply quickly. That’s why it’s important to take care of infestation as soon as possible.
The best way to deal with any bedbug infestation is to follow these 5 simple steps.
1. Identify What’s Infested
First, you need to figure out which areas are infested. Inspect the following common areas for bedbug infestations:
- Mattress and box spring seams
- The crack between the bed frame and headboard
- Sofa cushions, or along their seams
- Joints of furniture
- The seams of carpeting, or the area where the carpet joins the wall
Look for any of the signs of bedbugs mentioned above. If you spot them, you should also check out places such as nightstands and closets.
2. Contain the Bugs
Next, vacuum up any live bugs you can spot. Seal the vacuum bag tightly before throwing it away. Then, be sure to wash and dry all clothes and linens.
This won’t kill all the bugs, but it will stop the infestation from progressing further — as long as you act quickly!
3. Kill the Bugs
You can kill bedbugs in a variety of ways. For example, washing your clothes and linens in very hot water is usually quite effective, as bedbugs don’t do well in hot temperatures. Putting items in a very cold freezer works similarly
However, if you need fumigation of bed bugs 864 Fumigaciones offers fumigation services that may help. Fumigation is a very involved process that will require some excess prepping. It is best to use it if you have an infestation that just keeps coming back.
Regular store-bought insecticides may also work for some smaller infestations. You can also store mattresses, pillows, and plush animals in an airtight bag in an attempt to suffocate the bugs.
No matter what method you choose, you want to be sure to kill the bugs as soon as you spot them. If you don’t, the infestation will only get worse.
Live a Bug-Free Life!
Now that you know the common signs of bedbugs, you’ll be prepared to stop any bedbug infestation right in its tracks. Bedbugs can be annoying, but luckily they don’t carry disease, and they’re typically easy to kill.
If you thought this was helpful, check out our Lifestyle section for more tips on how to achieve a bug-free home!