How smart do you think you are? Wait till you get outsmarted by bed bugs. Their cunning and subtle moves make it extremely easy for them to invade any household. And once they’ve taken harbor in your residence, it’s too late to be closing your doors. So you’ve got no other choice but exhaust all efforts to get rid of them. Though it may sound easy as it seems, it’s not.
Bedbugs have been around for centuries now. Where do bed bugs come from? Some studies suggest that these wingless creatures originated from Asia but now they can apparently be found in all parts of the world. Bedbugs naturally thrive in areas with warm and dry climate. But now they’re already able to invade the northern regions. Thanks to the creation of heated buildings.
An essential part of bed bug treatment is in knowing how to identify these tiny bloodsuckers. Adult bedbugs appear reddish brown and about ¼ inch in length. Without food, their bodies are somewhat flat which then get engorged after a blood meal. Young bed bugs or nymphs are tinier and they appear translucent and yellowish. The eggs appear like tiny whitish rice grains with gooey consistency. Given the optimum living conditions, a nymph can transform into an adult bug in just one month until it gets ready to lay eggs. And there goes the spread of infestation scattering like wildfire.
From Bugs to Pests
Bed bugs start to become a problem when they become hungry for blood. They usually stay in their hiding places in between meals until they are forced to go out once their tummies growl. The heat of the human body is what they’re naturally attracted to but they won’t be able to detect it unless the food source is near them or anywhere within 5 cm.
Bedbugs use their highly specialized mouthparts to bite and suck blood from the skin of an unsuspicious person. Feeding time can last as long as seven minutes or as quickly as one minute. An adult bed bug can absorb blood around seven times of its own body weight. And then it immediately retreats to its hiding place after feasting and it’s ready to lay eggs again.
Most people don’t realize they’ve been bitten by bed bugs until they discover large wheals in the affected body part. These welts eventually develop into tiny red marks that will stay for about two to three days.
Bed bug bites are often mistaken as bites from mosquitoes and other insects. But you’ll know they are bedbug bites by the various patterns the wheals are formed. Some bites appear singly. While others form a line in three’s. It is always advised never to scratch the affected areas to avoid infection. And you should immediately wash the areas with water and mild soap.
Bedbugs can have their dinner on any part of the body as long as it has good blood flow and it is somewhat exposed although not necessarily. So it’s possible that the reproductive organs will also be included in their list of target spots.
Solving ’em Bugs
Treating bed bugs bites is only a minor portion of solving the problem. The next step is to eliminate these unwanted visitors. People who often travel to areas with a tropical climate are very susceptible to bed bug infestations. Considering the luggage they carry might become the bed bugs’ new haven. Seeing bedbugs crawl into boxes, suitcases and belongings is very difficult. Not surprising really because these creatures are tiny, agile and cryptic. Additionally, using second hand furniture, couches or beds could run a higher risk of bed bug infestation.
Getting rid of these nasty bugs in beds can be difficult. Fabrics with holes and tears are perfect locations for them to lay eggs. During the 40s and 50s the use of DDT was popular as it helped minimize the spread of bed bug infestations but it was eventually eradicated due to health concerns. Apparently they were found to be bad for humans too as much as they are lethal to bugs.
Pest control firms have a wide array tools and techniques to help get rid of beg bugs. These can range from pesticides and aerosols to other chemical agents. Beds in poor condition or heavily infested should be thrown out. Or they can be still be saved by encasing the box spring and mattress. Other effective bedbug treatments used by several pest control companies include steam cleaning and vacuuming.
It doesn’t matter what the extent of bedbug infestation you have. It’s crucial that you completely eradicate these pests the second you confirm their existence. So their journey ends here at least for now.