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Bed bugs may be one of the most difficult household pests to get rid of. These small, brownish-black insects are expert hitchhikers, and they usually make their way into homes by stowing away in luggage, backpacks, purses and other personal items. And while bed bug populations had dwindled in the United States by the 1940s and 1950s, increasing travel has led to a resurgence in their numbers.
Once bed bugs are in your home, they'll make themselves comfortable anywhere you do. That includes your furniture and, of course, your bed. They're often found in cracks, crevices and seams in upholstered furniture, mattresses and box springs. Bed bugs may also be found hiding in your carpet or rugs, wall dcor, books, nightstands or even electronics.
Bed bugs feed on blood. They use signals, including body heat, warmth and carbon dioxide, to find hosts. Usually, they emerge from their hiding places to feed at night, then retreat after their meals are complete.
If you have bed bugs in your home, you may be tempted to try to get rid of them yourself. There are several DIY methods, including rubbing alcohol, that supposedly kill bed bugs. But do they actually work?
It might seem like rubbing alcohol is a good way to get rid of bed bugs. In fact, many DIY blogs claim that it works. However, it's not all it's cracked up to be. Here's why:
While DIY methods are largely ineffective against bed bugs, there are a few things you can do to help the situation if you find these unwelcome pests in your home. Some proven methods include:
Frequent laundering can help kill bed bugs. Collect any infested clothing or linens and run them in a wash cycle at the highest temperature recommended by the manufacturer. Then dry them at the highest allowed temperature. Be sure to follow all manufacturers' instructions.
Your vacuum is an effective method of getting bed bugs out of your furniture, upholstery or carpet. However, you should take care to protect your vacuum so it doesn't become infested while you get rid of the insects. Try using the nozzle attachment and covering it with a stocking. When you've finished, be sure you empty the vacuum container or bag into a sealed bag, and then dispose of it in a sealed garbage can.
High temperatures are extremely effective against bed bugs. According to Rutgers University, steam, which is around 212 degrees Fahrenheit, will kill bed bugs instantly. Consider purchasing a steamer and using it to treat cracks, crevices and seams in your furniture, bedding or other upholstered surfaces.
Bed bug encasements are protective liners for your mattress and box spring. They help with bed bug problems by sealing your bed and preventing the insects from hiding and/or nesting there. They can also trap any bed bugs already present, helping you identify an infestation and seek further treatment.
Although it won't kill them, you can help deter beg bugs by eliminating their hiding places. Keep items off the floor, keep clutter away from your bed and store items in sealed plastic containers.
Because bed bugs are so difficult to get rid of, eliminating them is a job best left to the professionals. Trying DIY methods like rubbing alcohol will only leave you frustrated when the bugs initially disappear but return days or weeks later.
The bed bug control professionals at Terminix will do a free inspection of your home, checking for signs of bed bugs in common hiding places. From there, they'll treat affected areas to eliminate hidden bed bugs and their eggs. Our technicians use a variety of methods to help get your problem under control.
Don't let bed bugs keep you up at night. Schedule your free inspection with Terminix today.
Does Alcohol Kill Bed Bugs? | Terminix
Good night. Sleep tight. Dont let the bedbugs bite!
This familiar rhyme is frequently recited by parents to their children as they prepare for bed.
But where does it come from?
There are various myths surrounding its origin.
The phrase sleep tight is thought to refer to 16th and 17th century beds, which were usually mattresses filled with feathers and straw tied to a frame using a lattice of ropes. It was necessary to tighten these ropes frequently to prevent sagging, hence the term sleep tight.
If the ropes were not tight, the mattress could sag to the floor, making it easier for bed bugs on the ground to reach the mattress.
An alternative theory suggests the phrase refers to tying sleepwear tightly to prevent the bugs from easily reaching the skin at night.
Some historians refute these theories and point to the Oxford English Dictionary, which claims sleep tight simply means to sleep soundly.
Etymologist Barry Popik claims the rhyme actually originated in the USA in the 1860s, and in some versions the biting referred to mosquitoes. One version from the 1860s is Good night, sleep tight, wake up bright in the morning light, to do whats right, with all your might.
In a novel called Boscobel written in 1881 by Emma Mersereau Newton, a boy says to his parents, Good night, sleep tight; And dont let the buggers bite. And in the 1884 book Boating Trips by Henry Parker Fellows, a little girl says Good-night. May you sleep tight, where the bugs dont bite!.
The precise phrase Good-night, Sleep tight, Dont let the bedbugs bite first appears in the 1896 book What They Say in New England: A Book of Signs, Sayings, and Superstitions, and it later appeared in a 1923 text by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
The rhyme then became increasingly well known throughout the 21st century, appearing in numerous books and films. So although the true origins of the phrase remain unclear, it has certainly become well established and remains popular to this day.
If you really want to get rid of bed bugs today try SayByeBugs! It was developed as a safe and highly effective alternative among a sea of products that rarely deliver on their promises.
Read more here:
Dont Let the Bed Bugs Bite: The Origin of the Rhyme
Manitoulin Blood Feeders: Part II of a series – Fleas, bed bugs, lice and ticks… oh my! – Manitoulin Expositor
EDITORS NOTE: Joe Shorthouse is an entomologist and a professor emeritus with Laurentian University. This article is the second in a series of two examining the Islands relationship with the bity critters with whom we share the land.
by Joe Shorthouse
After discussing mosquitoes, black flies, horse and deer flies in Part I (September 7, 2022), I continue here with fleas, bed bugs, lice and ticks. Ways to reduce being annoyed and fed upon by these blood-feeders is also discussed.
Adult fleas are small, yellowish-brown to black, wingless insects about 3 mm in length specialized for life on furry or feathered animals feeding on blood to survive and reproduce. They are laterally flattened shaped like a coin standing on end.
Adult fleas have stiff backward-pointing hairs which makes it easy for them to move through their hairy hosts while making them difficult to dislodge by grooming. They have muscular legs, each with a pair of claws used to grasp hairs.
The immatures of fleas look like tiny caterpillars and do not feed on blood. Instead, they feed on faeces and organic material found in the beds of dogs and cats.
There are about 300 species of fleas feeding on birds and mammals in North America, with about 127 in Canada. Fleas traditionally do not bother people on Manitoulin Island, but anyone with a dog or cat knows they sometimes bite the owners.
Fleas cause major discomfort to cats and dogs and can lead to an eczematous itchy skin disease called flea allergy dermatitis. The bites often appear in clusters or lines of two and can remain itchy and inflamed for several weeks.
Newly formed adults can lay dormant in a hosts bed for up to a year, until a host animal is detected. They detect a potential host (sometimes a human) using cues such as low-frequency sound, vibration and increases in temperature and CO2 levels.
Adult fleas are effectively removed from the fur of pets using a fine-toothed flea comb, and are most easily spotted against a light background, such as a white sheet. Flea infestations are controlled by first eliminating adult fleas, and then by eliminating larvae and pupae.
A number of products are available at pet stores for treating adult fleas both on pets and in the home. Immature stages can be removed by washing pet bedding, vacuuming or steam-cleaning carpets and furniture, and by carefully cleaning floors and baseboards where pets sleep.
Being blood feeders makes fleas potential transmitters of diseases such as bubonic plague where they transmit a bacterium from rodents to humans. There are no diseases caused by fleas on Manitoulin Island.
Adult bed bugs are small, reddish brown, flattened and oval, wingless insects about the size of an apple seed (5-7 mm in length) which makes it easy for them to hide in tiny crevices.
They have been a pest throughout human history causing itchy bites and irritation. They were so common in the past, people accepted them as a part of their lives, reflected in the popular saying Good night. Sleep tight. Dont let the bed bugs bite.
Bed bugs creep us out because they crawl over our bodies while we are sleeping, suck our blood, then take refuge in folds of mattresses, carpets, under baseboards, and wallpaper.
They feed only at night by piercing the skin with two hollow tubes and injecting saliva with anticoagulants in one, then sucking up blood through the other. In most cases, victims of these tiny vampires are unaware that they are donating blood because of anesthetics in the saliva. Each feeding takes 3-12 minutes.
Bed bugs have five progressively larger nymphal stages, each requiring at least one blood meal before moulting to the next stage. The entire life cycle from egg to adult requires five weeks to four months, depending on temperature and availability of blood meals.
Both males and females feed on blood. Each female can produce hundreds of eggs in her lifetime, but when blood is unavailable, they can remain dormant for months. They have the uncanny ability to detect our bodies from a distance and can walk along the ceiling then accurately drop onto our beds and join us under the covers.
We have come to associate the presence of bed bugs with a lack of cleanliness; however, they frequently show up in immaculate homes. Bed bugs dont care if their environment is clean or dirty; all they need is a warm host and plenty of hiding places.
Unfortunately, bed bugs have become increasingly common since the 1990s. Their resurgence is likely due to increased global travel and commerce, ease of movement of infested items, resistance to pesticides, and changes in pesticides available for their control.
The Sudbury and District Health Unit does not keep records of bed bug findings on Manitoulin Island, but there is always the potential for infestations. Learn to recognize signs of their presence such as rusty stains on bed sheets or mattresses caused by bed bugs being crushed, dark spots which are excrement, or live bed bugs.
Bites on the skin are an unreliable indicator of an infestation because bed bug bites look like bites from other insects (such as mosquito), rashes (such as eczema or fungal infections), or even hives. Victims of bedbugs usually wake up to a distinctive row of three bite marks.
Bed bugs rely on humans to move them from one building to another. Bed bugs were likely first brought to all the islands in the Great Lakes in the canoes of early explorers.
Bed bugs are exceptional hitchhikers, travelling on clothing, bedding, luggage, furniture and cardboard boxes. As a result, they can be found in hotels, cruise ships, airplanes, trains and buses. Always check old mattresses and furniture for bed bugs before bringing them into your home.
If found in your home, find a reputable pest control company to treat the infestation early with insecticides before it becomes established or spreads. Steaming, vacuuming and applying insecticides to mattresses, pillows and beds eliminates bed bugs. Placing your luggage in plastic bags when in hotel rooms suspected of having bed bugs prevents transporting them home.
Bed bugs do not carry or transmit diseases. They are not a dangerous medical threat; however, the discovery of bedbugs in homes or hotel rooms results in considerable stress.
Lice are tiny insects about 1mm in length, oval, and usually yellow to white and sometimes with a red belly. They have fed on us throughout human history. The phrases you nit picker or I am feeling lousy reflect the human disdain for these insects.
Two kinds of lice are found on humans head (or body lice) and pubic lice. Head lice are commonly called cooties whereas pubic lice are called crabs. Both kinds spend their entire life cycle on humans. They cannot live off our bodies for more than 24 hours and are never found on pet dogs and cats.
Lice spread between people by crawling from the hair of one infested person to another. Adult head lice can live for 30 days on a persons head and lay 150 250 eggs during its life cycle.
Eggs of head lice are called nits and are glued to the base of hairs near the scalp. They take about one week to hatch. Nymphs become adults about 7 10 days after hatching.
Pubic lice attach themselves to coarse hairs in the pubic region, eyebrows, eyelashes, beards and armpits. They are sometimes charmingly described by the phrase papillons damour or butterfly of love (no further explanation needed in a family newspaper).
Lice take blood meals about six times a day. They inject saliva at each feeding which causes inflammation leading to intense itching. Itching leads to scratching and secondary bacterial infections. An itching scalp is the chief symptom, whereas presence of viable nits confirms the diagnosis.
Head lice infestations, or pediculosis, commonly occur among young children on Manitoulin Island during the winter. They spread from infected children when coats and hats are piled together or sharing bike helmets, brushes and head phones.
Lice were likely common among all the early peoples of Manitoulin Island, both Indigenous and settler peoples.
Head lice are not a significant health hazard nor an indication of poor hygiene. However, several infectious diseases such as epidemic typhus, relapsing fever, and trench fever can occur when people live in poor-hygiene caused by war, social disruption, or severe poverty. No diseases associated with lice are found on Manitoulin Island.
Head lice are detested especially among children and their presence usually results in fear and frenzied attempts to get rid of them. When active lice or nits are detected, it is important not to panic as they are easy to eliminate by using shampoos containing the insecticide pyrethrin, readily available at pharmacies. Ivermectin lotion such as Sklice is a topical, single-dose treatment applied directly to the scalp for 10 minutes and then rinsed with water.
If lice are detected, wash all clothing, bedding, hats, stuffed animals, and towels with hot, soapy water at 50C and dry them at high heat for at least 20 minutes. Wash combs and brushes and soak them in rubbing alcohol for an hour.
Ticks are not insects as they have four pairs of legs and two body parts. However, they have life cycles similar to insects whereby they start off at the egg stage, followed by nymphal stages, and then the adults. Nymphs look like small adults.
Common ticks in Canada include the blacklegged tick, more commonly known as the deer tick, the brown dog tick, and the American dog tick.
Unfed adult female blacklegged ticks are spider-shaped, approximately 3 to 5 mm in length and red or dark brown. Adult blacklegged ticks are smaller than the more common American dog tick.
Ticks cannot fly or jump and instead move about by climbing onto low vegetation and clinging onto passing mammals such as deer, dogs or people. Once ticks grasp hairs, they walk about on the skin then cut a hole and sink in their mouthparts. They attach a harpoon-like barbed structure near their mouthparts while injecting anticoagulant.
The average life span of an adult tick ranges from one to three years. They typically take a blood meal at each stage of the life cycle and when full grown can consume 100 times their weight in blood and become swollen. After engorging on the blood, they fall off and find shelter somewhere until they need to take another meal, then the process starts again.
Peak tick season for nymphs occurs during the spring and summer months, while adults are a threat in the late fall. They are usually found in wooded areas and areas overgrown with tall grasses.
When walking through areas of tall grass inhabited with ticks, wear light coloured clothing that makes it easier to spot ticks. Wear long-sleeve shirts and tuck your pant legs into long socks. Spray the lower parts of your pants, socks and shirt sleeves with insect repellent.
Do a full-body check before re-entering your home to ensure no ticks have attached to your clothing or pets. Examine your body when you shower or bath paying attention to arm pits, crotch and the site of bra straps.
Ticks are important vectors of Lyme disease. Early symptoms of Lyme disease include fatigue, fever, headaches, and rashes. One sign of the onset of Lyme disease is a bulls eye rash around the feeding site; however, not all people fed upon by a tick show the rash.
If a feeding tick is found and its mouthparts are sunk into your flesh, it must be removed with a pair of forceps (tweezers). Place the forceps on either side of the head region of the tick and gently pull without leaving any parts within your skin. Wash the area with soap and water.
Ticks on Manitoulin Island have tested positive for Lyme disease. Reporter Lori Thompson wrote about ticks and Lyme disease in the June 17, 2020 issue of The Manitoulin Expositor. This disease is caused by a bacteria spread by the bites of infected blacklegged ticks. A visit to a doctor to receive a dose of antibiotics is usually enough to treat the early stages of Lyme disease.
How to Avoid Blood Feeders
An exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in 2019 entitled Bloodsuckers: Leeches to Legends informed us that 30,000 species of animals around the world feed on blood. The show drew on science, medicine, popular culture and the supernatural to provide a refreshing perspective on the animals we have come to hate and fear.
People have been bothered by blood-feeding insects throughout history, and in many cases, we have learned to live with them. Mosquitoes and black flies, for example, are an irritating but inescapable part of the Canadian experience.
Mosquitoes were just one of the ROM stars in a much larger cast of squirm-inducing creatures that are united in their quest for the liquid lunch that flows through our veins.
At one time, our effort to eliminate many pest insects was centred on the insecticide DDT. At first it killed vast numbers of insects, but in time it bioaccumulated in the tissues of animals, including humans and birds resulting in an environmental disaster. No pests were eliminated by DDT while some became resistant and their numbers increased.
We also must recognize that larvae and adults of mosquitoes and black flies serve as food for the immatures of our sport fish. Males of mosquitoes and black flies are pollinators. Many species of birds and frogs eat adult blood feeders, so eliminating blood feeders would eliminate many fish, birds and frogs.
While the prospect of Manitoulin becoming free of blood-feeding insects is seductively attractive, past history has shown that attempts to exterminate has proven harmful and we instead should learn to avoid them.
It helps to understand their biology and avoid being in places when and where they are most abundant. Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants and a hat when outdoors in biting fly season. Tuck your pants into your socks helps keep biting flies and ticks from getting under your clothing. Mosquitoes are attracted to dark moving objects so wear white, tan or yellow clothing.
Netting that covers the head, like the bonnets used by beekeepers, provides protection when biting flies are at their peak. Avoid wearing sweet-smelling perfumes and deodorants, or clothing tainted by fabric softeners. Dont eat candy or consume soft drinks when outdoors as their odours attract black flies.
Mosquito pics or coils help keep mosquitoes from coming indoors. Pics are a repelling incense made with pyrethrum powder which is a natural insect repellent. Pics can burn for up to 5 hours and like candles, should never be left unattended.
The best way to avoid biting flies and ticks is to apply repellents with a high percentage of DEET (Diethyl-meta-toluamide) to exposed body surfaces. Spray it on your hat, arms, pant legs, socks, and exposed skin. Never spray repellents directly on your face and spray in well-ventilated areas away from food.
Always read the recommended levels before applying repellents on yourself and children. Safe and effective repellents are sold in most pharmacies, grocers, and outdoor stores in Canada. Sunscreen and insect repellent can be applied at the same time.
It is unfortunate that TV advertisements tell us that a chemical barrier must be laid down to prevent any creepy-crawlies from entering our homes and gardens, without mentioning the harm many such chemicals cause to human health and pets. As a result, many home owners regard all insects that enter their household with contempt which is both unfortunate and harmful.
Bed bug bites are a year-round nightmare. Youll find out how to tell apart the bed bugs bites from mosquitoes and fleas bites and why you wont feel anything while you are bitten. Well also give an answer to a popular question: Is it true that even two people sleeping in the same bed can react to these bites differently?. We will also explain how to get rid of itching after youve been bitten and how to prevent new bites. Those who are forewarned, are forearmed, so lets get started!
First, we need to talk about signs of bed bug bites which you may identify after the night sleep. According to the information about these pest insects from entomologists from the Entomology Department at Purdue University, the bites themselves are not painful and typically are not felt. You dont feel any pain when bitten because the bed bugs inject a special temporary analgesic which will relieve you from the pain.
A complete meal lasts 3-10 minutes. It all starts with the appearance of middle or large raised or flat spots on any part of human body (but the most common parts are face, neck, arms, and hands). Itching and redness most often accompany these bites.
Bed bug bites signs can differ greatly from one person to another. Even a couple sleeping in the same bed and thus bitten at the same time can react completely differently to the bites! UK College of Agriculture Entomology at the University of Kentucky has University of Kentucky has proven that almost every third person (30%) bitten doesnt feel any uncomfortable sensations even when theyve been bitten repeatedly over time. Such low bite sensitivity is typical of seniors. As the bed bug bites symptoms may be implicit and manifest in different ways, they are therefore often confused with other insects bites.. If you are not sure, whether you or your child were bitten by a bed bug, a mosquito or flea, look at our comparative table below which helps you to identify the pest bothering you.
Unlike mosquito bites, these ones always trail of 2-3 (up to 5) bites in a row, because a bed bug doesnt suck all of the blood at once, it feeds on it gradually and bites several times. The distance between the bites can be up to several inches. Sometimes this eating pattern is called breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Since the bites are painless you wont be able to interrupt the bed bugs feast which can last, as weve mentioned, up to 10 minutes!
Also, mind that it is a single bed bug that can bite you twice or thrice per night! How many bugs are there in your bed? According to scientific estimations, a bed can be inhabited by up to several thousands of bed bugs. This is not a limit, though, as there has been a case of 150 thousand bed bugs infesting a single room! Most of them inhabited particularly the bed. That is why even if a tenth of this army of thousands of pests is hungry, you risk having multiple itchy red bites all over your body the following morning.
In spite of the fact that the bed bugs only leave their nests at night for meal (as a rule, they appear between 3 and 8 am), they exceptionally appear during the day. This can happen if the bed bugs are too hungry (you can imagine the length of being too hungry taking into consideration the fact that the bed bugs can survive for UP TO A YEAR without food!). What is a contingency for the bed bugs? It is the absence of peacefully sleeping people nearby at night. Laundries, public transit, airports, offices and other non-residential buildings are at risk.
Therefore, the bed bugs arent afraid of bright daylight or artificial light if they want to get their blood portion (which they will!).
Unlike other biting insects which have certain activity peaks, bed bugs will inhabit your bed in any season until you get rid of them.
They do. Sometime dogs suffer most from bed bug bites as while living inside; the bugs can feed on their blood for a very long time before tasting yours. Why is it so? The matter is straight forward: just like cats, dogs sleep for most of the day (they sleep for 18 hours!). This allows the bed bugs to have enough blood at night or during the day.
It is quite possible. The bed bugs pierce the skin and suck your blood with the help of a special proboscis, which is not adapted for piercing tissue, plastic or paper. If you sleep wearing PJs, you may be in luck for a short period of time as the bed bugs are quick and will reach uncovered parts of your body soon enough,
As you have probably figured, these pests are a serious issue and you have to analyze a whole range of different factors to identify them. We have compiled a useful chart which will help you figure whether is the bed bugs which bite you or something else.
This very question most of all bothers those who have been bitten by the bed bugs. According to the Purdue University entomologists, at least 27 agents of human disease have been found in bed bugs, including viruses, bacteria, protozoa, and parasitic worms. None of these agents reproduce or multiply within bed bugs, and very few survive for any length of time inside a bed bug. There is no evidence that bed bugs are involved in the transmission (via bite or infected feces) of any disease agent, including hepatitis B virus and HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
This, unlike your CNS reaction to the bed bug bites, is quite rejoicing. The scientists claim that frequent bites can cause sleep disorders, including insomnia, stress and irritation. Its believed that the newborns attract the bed bugs most as their blood tastes better to them. Its unknown whether the newborns are really bitten more often, but the bed bugs bites can be the actual cause of their constant crying because their skin is really sensitive. Moreover, in most severe cases of significant blood loss, the newborns can develop anemia. Also, anyone with particularly sensitive skin can develop an allergy.
FYI: Although the bed bugs are nocturnal insects, they fear light less than starvation. They will come and find you even if you light the room with powerful spotlights.
Bed bugs need fresh blood every 3-4 days, but if they have already spread everywhere, the bites wont heal soon enough as new ones will appear all the time. Since the bites may not be immediately felt, you will hardly be able to name the exact day you were bitten.Bites may not become immediately visible, and can take up to 3-4 days to appear. The experts add that a delayed reaction up to 14 days is possible.
Redness, itching, swelling of the skin are usually gone in a few days. In more severe cases, such as being bitten by hundreds of bed bugs, healing takes longer: up to 3 weeks. If the bites do not heal and you have noticed growing health deterioration, seek medical attention immediately as an allergic reaction to the bites may be to blame, which should be treated under a specialists supervision, if possible.
Since the bed bugs do not transmit any diseases, their bites dont have to be treated (provided you have neither an allergy nor you itch). Still, if minor itching bothers you, use such home treatment as ice packs to reduce swelling or a mixture of water and soda to reduce itching. If itching is awful, use such products as StingEze Dauber for a Check current price. This low-cost remedy is recommended by scientists because it helps to eliminate pain and itching. Alternatively, you may apply Benadryl Itch Relief Spray for a Check current price: its a multipurpose remedy with a 4.5 stars rating.
Take antihistamine drugs if you know that you have an allergy reaction. These pills help to fight allergic reactions and are an excellent bed bug bites remedy. Take these drugs (after consulting a doctor) before the bites swell too much. This will help control the itching and swelling at early stages.
There are lots of online myths regarding the treatment which allegedly is effective against the bed bugs. Here are two most spread myths.
This is not true. Repellents may be helpful against mosquito bites, some other insects bites, but the bed bugs dont care about what you spray on yourself.
This is not true. Unfortunately, they are also useless as the insecticide fog cannot reach the secluded spots inhabited by the bed bugs. Moreover, once the bed bugs feel such synthetic chemical attack, they will hide deeper into the cracks and it will become even more difficult to get rid of them.
To protect yourself from their bites, you need to use only the tested and approved by the scientists bed bug control products. Also, mind that it is necessary to get rid of not only adults, but also of the larvae and even of the eggs which could eventually grow into adult biting insects.
However, things are not very simple. You cant merely get rid of the bed bugs by using single type of treatment. Along with thorough cleaning it is essential to systematically apply other methods.
Here are the 3 main steps:
Remember! Up to 150 thousand bed bugs can inhabit your bed, so dont put off getting rid of them and take action right now!
We have collected for you all proven scientific information regarding getting rid of bed bugs in our guide. In fact, to get rid of them youll have to be smarter and more persistent than these bloodsuckers! Arm yourself against them right now and read The Complete Guide to How to Kill Bed Bugs
Where do Bed Bugs Hide During the Day?
Bed bugs are nocturnal and mainly active at night, so what happens when the sun comes up? Bed bugs do not usually crawl for long distances and they don't have wings so they tend to stay near potential blood meal hosts. Evidence of where bed bug infestations may be found in a bed room include: bed frame, mattress and box spring. Bed bugs are only attached to hosts' bodies during blood feeding. In between blood meals, bed bugs can also be found nearby on furniture, behind wallpaper and under the edge of carpet. Their flattened shape makes it easy for the parasites to quickly hide in cracks and crevices, including walls, wood floors, electrical outlets and other narrow spots inside and outside your home or other area.
While bedrooms tend to harbor more bed bugs than other household locations, it should be noted that they can hide anywhere people tend to sleep or rest. Some examples of other hiding spots include: Cushions in movie theaters and airplanes, seats in buses and cabs, chairs in break rooms, storage areas, offices or lounges with upholstered furniture. To minimize the risk of a bed bug infestation, consider taking precautions such as putting your purse on your lap instead of on the ground at an airport, and placing luggage in the bathroom on a hard, uncarpeted service in hotel rooms until you inspect the room for any potential signs of bed bug activity.
Bed bugs gravitate towards people who remain inactive (e.g., sleeping) long enough to provide a blood meal, though you dont need to worry about where bed bugs hide on your body for long term periods. Unlike ticks, bed bugs dont attach themselves to a human host, but can be transported by humans in their belongings such as a coat, luggage or furniture. Once established, bed bugs will instead travel from a hiding spot 5-20 feet away to blood feed. The blood feeding process usually lasts three to 10 minutes. While most people dont know theyre being bitten during blood feeding, bites can result in itchy welts caused by a reaction to bed bug saliva and this can cause discomfort for up to a week or more. Once the blood feeding is complete, bed bugs retreat to their hiding spots to digest the blood. Male and female bed bugs require a blood meal between each of five nymphal stages. Once they reach adulthood, blood fed female bed bugs use the protein from the blood to develop eggs after mating. Under favorable conditions with access to blood meal hosts, the time between feedings usually ranges between five to 15 days and females can lay 10-50 eggs each batch. Bed bug adults are about the size of an apple seed.
After mating, adult female bed bugs hide their eggs in secluded places. Theyll try getting as close to a food source as they can, and look for cracks and crevices, even seams of mattresses, mattress tags, and other hard to reach areas. A sticky substance produced by the female bed bug helps eggs stick to surfaces and each female can potentially produce hundreds of eggs during their lifetimes. Bed bug eggs are tiny and white, about the width of a spaghetti noodle, and are difficult to observe closely without magnification. When temperatures are above 70F, eggs can hatch in 7-10 days and this process takes longer at lower temperatures. Newly hatched nymphs (immature bed bugs) immediately go in search of a blood meal. Knowing where bed bugs hide their eggs can help investigators identify a potential issue and, help stop the issue from becoming an infestation
Dont wait to find out where bed bugs may be hiding in your house. If you suspect that you may have a bed bug issue, consider contacting a Terminix pest control professional to schedule an inspection.
The last thing anyone wants to think about are bed bugs hiding just out of plain sight, but its a reality. They dont discriminate between clean/organized and dirty/messy environments, or public and personal spaces. However, cluttered environments with multiple hiding places can make bed bug control more difficult. Bed bugs can be attracted to many different warm-blooded vertebrate hosts (e.g., rodents, dogs, cats); however, humans are the preferred host. Bed bugs live in a variety of environments associated with humans. These insects are attracted to warmth, moisture from your body, and CO and can detect these host seeking cues from approximately three feet away. Where bed bugs hide is related to blood meal host availability and blood feeding relies heavily on their ability to stay under cover until the opportunity arises. Lets look at the most commonly asked questions about where bed bugs typically hide.
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Where Do Bed Bugs Hide? | Terminix