One of the calls I’ve been getting a lot is people calling to ask if they have bed bugs. Infestations of bed bugs are on the rise, and just knowing that makes people go on hyper-alert sometimes.
If you wake up with a bite and immediately start looking for bed bugs, it’s important to know where to look and what to look for.
5 places they are most likely to hide
- The edging of your mattress
- Crevices in your bedside table
- Anywhere that the trim on the wall is loose or under old wallpaper
- In clothing, pillows, stuffed animals or other things with creases near or on your bed
What to look for
As eggs, they are a pearl color that is very tiny in size. Most people have a hard time seeing eggs with just their eyes. As they hatch and grow, mature bed bugs end up about the size of an apple seed. They are a red-brown color and flat until they fill up on blood (then they swell up and look almost like a football shape). Bed bugs don’t have wings and will generally not move too far from their (human) source of food.
You’ll often find signs of bed bugs rather than the bugs themselves. These signs include:
- Molted Skins- they outgrow their shell and cast it off like snakes. Look for a popcorn kernel type substance in creases and crevices.
- Fecal Matter- Small blackish brown lumps will be laying most often alongside the skins
- Blood- remember that blood turns dark brown when it dries, look for small dots of old dried blood
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
This is a topic that could take an entirely new blog post. Generally, you have to attack the problem from multiple directions. This includes a thourough washing and scrubbing and vaccuuming of your home on top of chemical treatment by a professional. I help clients design a plan and stick to it to keep their home clear of bed bugs. If you think you have a problem, don’t put off asking for help as these critters multiply quickly and can turn from a nuisance into a huge problem fast.
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