What will you do if you wake up with a lot of bug bites all over your body? You check your bed and find nothing. Well, check again. They’re there, hiding beneath the mattress, waiting for another chance to feed on your blood.
So, how do you put an end to this? Learn what bed bugs look like and how to prevent and eliminate infestations.
Bed bugs are small pests that are incredibly resilient and can survive for months without feeding. They’re masters at hiding in tiny cracks, crevices, and inaccessible areas, making them difficult to locate and eliminate.
Additionally, bed bugs can rapidly reproduce, with female bed bugs laying up to 250 to 500 eggs in their lifetime, and these eggs can hatch in 6 to 10 days, causing small infestations to escalate quickly.
Ignoring a bed bug infestation can also result in serious health problems and structural damage to your property and items. Bed bug bites can be unbearably itchy and irritating. Their tendency to hide in cracks and crevices can lead to the degradation of wooden structures and furniture, posing a risk to the durability and safety of your property.
Replacing damaged furniture and potentially treating walls and floors can add up quickly, making a significant dent in your wallet.
To defeat the enemy, know thy enemy. Adult bed bugs have flat, oval-shaped bodies with tapered abdomens. They usually measure 4 to 6 mm long, similar to an apple seed. As for color, adults are reddish brown, while the young ones are lighter.
The body of a bed bug is divided into three main parts: head, thorax, and abdomen. They have short, segmented antennae and have six legs. Fortunately, bed bugs don’t have wings and they are flightless. Unfortunately, they crawl and climb fast to fabrics, furniture, walls and ceilings.
Bed bug eggs are even tinier. They’re just about 1 mm in size. Imagine how minute that is. But, they are clustered and attached to surfaces through a sticky substance. The color is pearly white and the shape is like a rice grain.
Although bed bugs are extremely small, they are visible to the human eye. These are accurate bed bug pictures showing how they infest under the bed, wood cracks of a bed frame, the bottom of a table and hole in the floor. The images also show bed bugs poop on the mattress and an electrical outlet.
Bed bugs form groups and hide in floors, walls, and ceilings. These pests can fully develop in a month and produce three or more generations yearly.
How Do Bed Bugs Enter Your Homes?
Bed bug infestations usually start from a single entry point, such as from the luggage used in a recent trip, second-hand furniture, or even guests who may unknowingly bring them into your home.
Once inside, they quickly find hiding spots and begin to reproduce at an alarming rate. If not detected and treated early, the infestation can spread throughout your property, leading to health issues and potential structural damage.
The difficulty in locating these pests and their rapid reproduction make bed bugs a severe problem that requires immediate attention.
Signs That You Have a Bed Bug Infestation
Some common signs that you have a bed bug infestation in your home are:
- Persistent, sweet, musty odour
- Reddish or dark brown stains on your bed sheets and sleepwear. This can either be bed bug excrement or blood from crushed bed bugs.
- Red, itchy bits that appear in clusters or lines on your skin
- The presence of pale yellow egg shells or bed bug exoskeletons
- Actual sighting of live bed bugs on your bed, furniture, or other areas in your home
If you have the following signs above, act quickly to prevent the infestation from getting worse.
How to Eliminate Bed Bugs and Prevent Them From Coming Back
Heat treatment is one of the most effective methods to kill bed bugs. This method involves raising the temperature of the affected area to levels that are deadly for bed bugs but safe for humans and pets.
Heat treatment penetrates walls, furniture, and fabrics, ensuring no bugs or eggs are left behind. Unlike chemical treatments, heat eliminates both adult bed bugs and their eggs, offering a more comprehensive solution. Additionally, heat treatment is eco-friendly and poses no risk of chemical residue.
Despite the effectiveness of heat treatment, consulting professional bed bug exterminators is still the most reliable way to ensure complete elimination.
Professionals have the experience and tools to not only treat the current infestation, but also to provide preventative measures to keep them from returning. Their expertise ensures that you’re not just treating the problem, but also preventing future occurrences.