As horrible as bed bugs are, you can rest assured that these pests were brought into the home from somewhere or someone else. In fact a bed bug infestation has nothing to do with cleanliness, instead they are simply transferred from people to people and place to place. With this in mind, we will look at the most common ways in which homes and businesses become riddled with bed bugs.
Most people get bed bugs from infested clothing, luggage, accessories and upholstered furniture which are bought into the home. These pests are hitchhikers and can easily travel between buildings as they go unnoticed by humans.
Are you currently battling a bed bug invasion and wondering how this has happened? If so, then this article is for you. In this guide, we will explore answers to some of the most common questions people have about bed bugs and where they come from.
Read on to find out more about these parasitic insects and how we at Malum can help you to get rid of them.
What is the main cause of bed bug infestations?
Bed bug infestations are nothing short of a nightmare for homeowners. There is no way to sugarcoat this specific type of pest problem, as this species can be very difficult to destroy.
The main cause of bed bugs inside the home is typically through the transfer of used furniture. Bed bugs can easily hide inside the seams of sofas, mattresses and soft furnishings, where they like to lie in wait for a viable new host/parasite dwelling.
The paper-thin, flat bodies of these insects allow the species to take advantage of obscure hiding places, such as inside boxes of clutter, within electrical outlets and mattress linings – as long as they are kept close to where people sleep.
Additionally, travel is one of the most typical ways in which people bring bugs into their home. If you stay in an infested hotel room or cruise ship cabin, these little pests can easily stow away in your belongings, purses, backpacks and luggage, bringing a whole new meaning to the phrase of being ‘bitten by the travel bug’.
Where do bed bugs prefer to hide?
When trying to find bed bugs, the mattress, box springs, and bed frames are the primary hiding areas. Other infested areas can include loose wallpaper, bedding and other fabrics like curtains, in addition to specific types of dwelling such as hotel rooms and apartment blocks, in which infested areas can easily transfer to other units via bugs crawling through cracks in the walls.
The colony will usually be found on bed frames or inside the box springs of a bed. This is why mattresses, box springs, and headboards should be immediately treated first to try and knock down the infestation as much as possible.
How do bed bugs appear out of nowhere?
Contrary to popular belief, these bugs do not just appear out of nowhere; they are brought into a home someway, somehow. You can easily identify a bed bug, since the insects themselves are about the size of an apple seed, and slightly larger and rounded than ants. Bed bugs cannot jump or fly, they must crawl and climb in order to move around.
The bugs are almost always contained in the bedroom, as these little vampires like to come out at night to bite people whilst they are sleeping. Once the bugs have finished feeding, they creep down deep within the bed in order to stay as far out of sight as possible during the day.
What attracts bed bugs in the first place?
The blood of humans in addition to our carbon dioxide exhalation and body warmth, are the primary attractants for bed bugs.
Additionally, bed bugs can also be attracted to furniture. These pests will crawl up the legs of bed frames and sofas to hide within the fabric and wait to bite people at the most opportune of moments.
Bed bugs are attracted to people in general, and can be picked up nearly anywhere outside of the home, including from chairs at theaters, offices or even from seats on public transport.
But it’s our heat and CO2 that attracts this species the most, and bed bugs bite and feed once a host has bedded down and is ready for sleep.
How to treat bed bug bites
Yes, it makes us feel funny too, but it is true – bed bugs bite and feed when a host is asleep. Bed bug bites can cause severe itching and even an allergic reaction in people sensitive to the toxins emitted from the bugs to numb the skin around the bite site.
Bed bug bites do not usually spread disease, therefore, disease control procedures are not imminently necessary from bed bug bites. Some strains of bed bugs have been known to spread MRSA, but the research is vague in terms of where these strains are heavily distributed.
To treat bed bugs bites, you can use calamine lotion to ease the itching, but you should refrain from using alcohol or any other type of ointment on the bites. The itchiness and redness will dissipate after a few days.
What are the first signs of a bed bug infestation?
Bed bug excrement, which has a reddish brown colour and is the byproduct of a blood meal, are typically the first signs that you have bed bugs. These reddish brown spots are a mixture of blood and feces and is expelled after bed bugs feed.
Apart from noticing these spots, you can also typically spot bed bugs by looking in the typical hide and seek places, such as in cracks and crevices, across headboards, within the coils of box springs, down bed legs, or even along the wall.
These insects will almost always initially be found in the bedroom and the undersides of beds and bedside furniture.
As soon as you first discover bed bugs, your very first course of action should be to contact a specialist pest control company to come out for an inspection. Bed bugs are not the type of pest for which DIY procedures are recommended, due to the hiding capabilities of the species and their rapid reproduction.
Once you consult a professional, you should then launder all your clothing and fabrics on the highest heat settings, and consider encasing your box spring and mattress to trap the bugs that are inside. This will prevent the pests from having access to food and other hiding places.
Bed bugs should not be taken lightly, so immediate action is absolutely necessary.
Why Choose Malum for bed bug control?
A standard, professional bed bug control treatment can typically eradicate these insects within a few weeks. But bed bugs can return if they are brought back into the home, and if treatments are not effective enough. This is why it is important to contact a professional pest control company as they can ensure that no where has been missed.
At Malum we pride ourselves on providing the very best integrated pest management approach. We look at every challenge from outside the box to give you the very best immediate and long-term solution.
Through experience, we can provide a guaranteed and professional treatment for eradicating bed bugs and helping to prevent their return.
Contact us today for a free pest control quote.