Bed bugs are tormenting pests. When they get into a home, they are a nightmare to get rid of and horrible to deal with. Bites from bed bugs can be quite irritating and itchy, and these bites usually happen in bunches, which makes it even worse.
When a bed bug infestation begins, bites are usually inflicted by tiny, immature nymphs. These bites are smaller, and aren't associated with the large welts that bed bugs are known to cause. That is why it is important to catch a bed bug infestation before you have adult bugs feeding on you or your family.
Top 7 Signs That You Have Bed Bugs
- You see these bugs crawling around - It may seem silly, but the best sign that you have bed bugs is actually seeing a bed bug. The problem is that many people miss this sign because they don't know what bed bugs look like. They don't always look like the pictures that news reporters put up on the screen. Those flat, oval, rust-colored bugs with the horizontal creases on their abdomens are adult bed bugs. There is a good chance that, if you see a bed bug, it is going to be an immature nymph. While nymphs have six legs, two antennae, and three body parts like the adults, their coloring is quite different. When a bed bug first hatches it is nearly colorless, and mostly transparent. As it develops it goes from pale, to tan, to light brown, to eventually rust-colored. A newly hatched bed bug is only about the size of the tip of a pen.
- You see black feces - Bed bugs leave their feces everywhere. They leave streaks on pillowcases, sheets, and bedding. They leave streaks on baseboards, outlets, electronics, and upholstered furniture. They leave patches of black in the seams of mattresses and box springs, and in the stitching of couches and chairs. If you're finding tiny black droppings or black staining, you may have bed bugs.
- You see blood stains - Bed bugs cause blood staining in areas of infestation, and also in areas where they are feeding. If you find these stains immediately, they will be red, or a mixture of red and black. Most often these stains are found after they have turned brown. Look for blood staining on sheets, pillowcases, bedding, mattresses, box springs, and upholstered furniture.
- You find shed insect skins - Bed bugs are like snakes; they shed their skin. This skin, called a cuticle, is shed as they pass from one instar to the next. These shed casings will usually be stuck to areas of infestation, but they may also be found littered in your bed, or stuck to fabrics.
- You smell something funny - There is nothing funny about the smell of bed bugs. If you go into the spare bedroom and smell an aroma that might be described as a wet, dirty, locker room towel, you may have a bed bug infestation. What's worse, you may have a large infestation. Bed bugs produce a pheromone scent to communicate with other bed bugs. This scent is not detectable if you only have a few bed bugs. But, when a population grows large enough, this smell will become quite noticeable.
- You find tiny white eggs - If you have bed bugs, there is a good chance you have bed bugs eggs somewhere in your home. These tiny white eggs may be in the seams of your luggage if you picked bed bugs up on your travels. They may be in the seams of furniture or your bed. They could be stuck to clothing or bedding. Most often, eggs will be stuck to or littered around a site of infestation. When you search for eggs, you'll have to look closely. A batch of a hundred bed bug eggs could probably fit on your pinky.
- If you're finding bites - We mentioned it at the beginning of this post, but it bears mentioning again. Usually, the first signs people get that bed bugs are present in their home is the sign of bites on their skin. These bites start out small and less irritating, but eventually grow into something few can ignore. If you don't see any of the other signs, you will eventually take note of this one.
When bed bug signs appear, it is time to call a professional. At Big Blue Bug Solutions, we protect Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut homes and businesses from the traumatizing effects of a bed bug infestation. For fast, effective bed bug control services, reach out to us today.