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There are many ways to get rid of bed bugs. The trick is understanding what works and what doesn't. If you buy into some of the many suggestions given on the internet, you may find yourself on a rollercoaster ride with these bugs. Knowledge is the key to stopping bed bugs. You need to know where bed bugs hide, how to identify bed bugs and their bites, and what to do when you find bed bugs. We'll walk you through the steps to give you the knowledge you need to find these irritating pests and get rid of them quickly. Keep in mind that our suggestions today will only help if you catch bed bugs early. If bed bugs have spread in your home, reach out to us for bed bug pest control in Rhode Island. It is far better to have a licensed pest management professional handle bed bugs once they've had a chance to take root in your home. 

Easy-To-Spot Signs Of A Bed Bug Infestation In Your Home

Early signs of bed bugs are easy to spot if you know what to look for and where to look. What are the signs? Look for bed bug bites, black spots, black streaks, dried blood stains, and/or eggs. Let's examine each of these.

Bites: When bed bugs enter your home, there are two ways they'll do it. They'll hitch a ride as adult bugs or as eggs. One, or a small number, of adult bed bugs will leave welts on your skin. Each adult will likely leave three wounds. It doesn't take too many bed bugs to leave a lot of bites. If bed bugs enter your home in eggs, the baby bed bugs that emerge may only leave slight bite wounds that look like prickly bumps. These small bumps will have a rash around them and you may think they're just a part of the rash and not insect bites at all.  

Feces: Bed bugs leave their excrement as they explore their environments. In your home, this excrement will look like black spotting on fabrics or black steaks on hard surfaces. Inspect your covers, pillowcases, sheets, bed frames, furniture near your beds, and electronics. Also, check your baseboards, outlet covers, crown molding, and other tight hiding places in the structure of your home. Bed bugs hide in tight spaces and dark voids.

Blood Stains: Bed bugs excrete blood. You may find blood stains by themselves or with black fecal spotting. These stains will likely appear tan or brown—not red. The reason for this is that they are most often created in the evening and have time to dry overnight. Bed bugs are activated by the increase of carbon dioxide in a room and will typically come out when this elevation of gases occurs. Once they've fed, they'll go back into hiding and stay hidden for the rest of the night. 

Eggs: Bed bug eggs are white, 1/24 of an inch long, and easily missed. You'll need a flashlight, probing tool, and good eyes. Inspect any luggage items that you suspect are infested with bed bugs. If you catch eggs in these items, you may stop an infestation before the bed bugs hatch.

Perform routine bed bug inspections in your home to catch bed bugs early. Doing so will give you the drop on those bugs, and you may stop them before they make you miserable.   

What It's Like To Have A Bed Bug Infestation In Your Home

Two signs of bed bugs are easy to spot, but only after you have had an infestation for a while, which is not a great way to find out you have bed bugs. We'll share these signs with you because you can use them while away from home. When you see warning signs of bed bugs while away from home, you can stop bed bugs from coming home with you.

Bed Bug Pheromones: These insects communicate by smell. The material they excrete is subtle at first, but once a location has a dozen or so bed bugs, the smell is noticeable. Some describe bed bug pheromones as smelling like coriander. Others describe is as resembling the smell of a locker room towel. All we can say is this. If you smell something a little off, take a closer look for bed bugs.

Bed Bugs: You may actually see bed bugs if there is a mature infestation. Bed bugs begin to take more chances to get a blood meal once the population is too large for the available food source. Bed bugs range in size from 1/24 to â…™ of an inch in length. Baby bed bugs are pale colored but will appear red after having a blood meal. Nymphs are tan and will have black feces visible in the abdomen. Adult bed bugs look like apple seeds with legs. They are shaped like apple seeds and have six legs and two stubby antennae.

Now that you know what to look for, let's look at how you may pick bed bugs up. Some of the ways bed bugs enter your home may surprise you. 

All The Ways Bed Bugs Can Hitch A Ride Into Your Home

The most common way Rhode Island residents get bed bugs is by picking them up when they are on vacation. But this is far from the only way you can get these bugs. Here are a few more to consider:

  • If you have young kids, they can get bed bugs at school or at sleepovers.

  • You can get bed bugs from a used piece of furniture. Keep in mind that bed bugs don't just hide in mattresses, box springs, and bed frames. They hide in other furniture items, computers, alarm clocks, piano stools, pianos, containers, and more.

  • You can get bed bugs from a neighbor if you live in an apartment or multi-family unit. Bed bugs get into wall voids.

  • You can get bed bugs when you're at the movie theater.

  • You can get bed bugs when you take a hardback book home from a library.

  • A college-age son or daughter can bring bed bugs home from a dormatory.

  • You can get bed bugs while taking a taxi, bus, or train ride.

Bed bugs are found in many places, even public venues that do not have beds. Always keep watch for these pests. 

What You Should Do If You Find Bed Bugs In Your Home

There are several ways to get rid of bed bugs. Some are methods you can apply yourself. When we recommend tips, we share natural pest control for bed bugs. The products sold over the counter often have little or no impact on bed bug infestations. Bed bugs have developed an immunity to some common control products, so they simply don't work. In other cases, products may work but the strategy used to apply the products is either incorrect or incomplete. The worst outcome of a bed bug treatment is to use a product that makes you sicker than the bed bugs can make you. When it comes to controlling bed bugs yourself, you can't go wrong with all-natural solutions. They won't make you sick and they don't require any specialized knowledge. Here are a few to consider.

  • When you perform an inspection, keep a vacuum at the ready. If you see bed bugs tucked in a seam or hidden between your mattress and box spring, you can suck those bugs up. If those are all the bugs infesting your home, your infestation is gone. Just make sure to put the bag outside. How likely is it that you'll get all the bugs in one spot? Actually more likely than you might think. Bed bugs tend to congregate in one location when they first infest a home. Spreading out presents too many challenges and reduces their chances of survival. So bed bugs stay near one source of food if they can.

  • Wash your laundry and bedding in hot, soapy water, and put your clothes through a dryer cycle. What does this do? Soapy water dries bed bugs out and dehydrates them. A hot drier eliminates bed bugs in all stages of development. If you have eggs in your bedding or clothing, they can hatch, and your infestation can continue. Taking this step helps to prevent the continuation of an infestation.

  • Vacuum your rugs routinely until your infestation is definitely gone. Doing this adds another layer of control as it may pick up eggs hidden in your rugs.

  • Put an infested item in your dryer or freezer. Heat and cold can eliminate bed bugs hiding inside. For example, if you notice black streaks on your alarm clock, put your clock in a sealed bag and put it in the freezer for four days. If all the bugs are hiding in that clock, your infestation is gone. The same is true of putting items in the dryer. Keep in mind that you can put duffel bags, book bags, pocketbooks, sleeping bags, and other items in there—not just clothes.

Do you see how all-natural steps work? But they only work if you catch the bed bugs early and find where they're hiding. Okay. So, what do you do when bed bugs have spread, or you are unable to locate the bed bugs in your home? Contact your local pest control for bed bugs. If you're in Rhode Island, Big Blue Bug Solutions can help. Our technicians are trained in the most advanced bed bug control strategies. We don't mess around with bed bug control in Rhode Island. We know how much these bugs disturb people and we know how easily they can spread. We find them, target them, and eliminate them. Connect with us today for immediate assistance.     

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