5 Signs That You Have Bed Bugs in Your Room
Just the thought of sharing your bed with bed bugs is enough to make anyone's skin crawl - but would you even know you had an infestation?
A female bed bug can lay 200-500 eggs during her lifetime, so eliminating these nasty pests before their populations explode is vital. Without the help of a professional with NY Bed Bug Dogs, it can be hard to ensure that you have killed every single bed bug at every different life stage.
While bed bugs are difficult to find and even more difficult to get rid of, it's not impossible for renters and homeowners to spot the signs of an infestation early on. Here are five things you need to look for.
1. Red, Itchy Bites
While you may know you have an infestation if you notice small, itchy, red welts, 30% to 60% of people do not have a reaction to bed bug bites.
Because bed bugs inject an anesthetic into your skin when they take their blood meals at night, it's unlikely that you will even notice the bites right away. If you wake up and see small, itchy bites in the areas with a lot of blood vessels of your body - like your hands, arms, neck, and legs - you probably have a bed bug infestation.
2. Blood Stains on Your Sheets and Pillows
When bed bugs feed on human blood, they inject an anticoagulant into their victim's skin to allow the blood to run more freely. The anticoagulant causes a drop of blood to form at the bite site, which easily gets onto your sheets, blankets, and pillows.
If you notice mysterious spots of blood on your bedclothes, you probably have a bed bug infestation.
3. Rust-Colored Spots on Your Mattress
Aside from the bloodstains on your bedclothes, you may also notice rust-colored spots on your mattress and bedding. These spots are actually the bed bugs' feces and give off an unpleasant, musky odor and will smear if you touch them.
These fecal stains aren't always limited to bedding, either - you may find them on your walls, behind picture frames, and in corners of your room.
4. Skin Castings Start Piling Up
Bed bugs go through several life stages and shed their skin as part of their life cycle.
The discarded shed skins bed bugs leave behind are tan-colored. You will often find them inside the creases of your mattress, on soft furnishings, along your baseboards, and in other nooks and crannies in your room near your bed.
5. Bed Bugs Showing Themselves
Aside from all the signs that bed bugs leave behind to reveal their presence, you may also see the occasional pest itself. Adult bed bugs are oval and flat, have six legs, and are light brown in color.
After a bed bug has taken a blood meal, they appear slightly swollen and darker brown in color. Bed bugs are tiny at around ¼ inch long - about the size of an apple seed.
Some bed bug lookalikes are often mistaken for bed bugs - like fleas, bat bugs, spider beetles, carpet beetles, spider beetles, and booklice. To positively identify a bed bug infestation, you should call a professional exterminator to conduct a thorough inspection.