Signs of a bed bug infestation can include blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases, shells or skins on the edge of your mattress, fecal remains on the mattress, and the bugs themselves. Here's what to look for:
Bed bug bites look like small, red bumps, similar to a mosquito bite. Bed bugs will bite any skin that is exposed while sleeping, including arms, legs, hands, neck, and face. The bite can cause the skin to swell slightly and typically causes an itching sensation.
First, clean the bite with soap and water. To relieve the itching, use an anti-itch cream or an antihistamine. Swelling, inflammation, or itchiness will commonly go away within a week or two.
Other than itching and swelling around the bite, bed bugs are not known to carry disease. With more severe cases, the itching can cause excessive scratching, which can lead to a skin infection.
Bed bugs typically only come out at night when there is a higher chance of being able to feed. However, they can still feed during the day if blood is available. For example, they can feed if you are taking a nap or sitting on the couch.
One of the most common hiding places for bed bugs is in the corner of a mattress or box spring, or in the folds of your sheets. However, the little creatures are great at hiding in many other small places, including baseboards, furniture, books, shoes, and suitcases.
Adult bed bugs are small, between four and five millimeters. Bed bug bodies are flat, have an oval shape, and are dark red in color. Their bodies will swell and become redder after they have fed.
Bed bugs are highly skilled at traveling and typically come into a home or property riding on luggage, clothing, or on furniture. A common misconception about bed bugs is that they only infest homes that are dirty or unkempt; however, they can be found in even the cleanest hotels, homes, and commercial buildings.
A female bed bug can lay three to five eggs per day and around 300 eggs in her lifetime. Eggs are laid in protected areas, such as baseboards, behind wallpaper, or in cracks of furniture, often in the same place the female rests.
Bed bugs commonly hitch a ride when you are traveling. During travel, be sure to thoroughly check the corners of the mattress and bedding, and keep luggage away from beds and off of the floor. Avoid purchasing second-hand furniture or bedding unless it has been professionally cleaned.
There are a variety of bed bug treatment methods, including chemical and heat treatments, as well as DIY methods. For complete bed bug treatment and to ensure an infestation doesn’t re-establish, a professional exterminator with the appropriate equipment is the best course of action.
Treating a bed bug infestation depends on the severity of the infestation, how large the space is, and how many treatments it will take to rid the space of all bed bugs and their eggs. For complete bed bug removal, it can cost between $500 and $1,500.
If you have seen signs of a bed bug infestation in your home, call our team of professionals at Thermanator Bed Bug, serving Denver, Northern, and Southern Colorado. We are experts in bed bug treatment and will thoroughly and efficiently clear your home of all bed bugs and the eggs.