How long do bed bugs live?
Bed bugs live anywhere from four to six months. These parasites are so resilient that, even the young ones can survive without food – yes that’s your blood – for several months? Can you do that? I didn’t think so. And adult bed bugs can live for up to one year without food.
Where do bedbugs come from?
Doctors recommend that we all should take at least 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep every night. But in today’s hectic life, most of us aren’t lucky enough to get that many hours to spend dreaming in our bed. That’s why it becomes even more important to make sure that whatever hours we get to sleep should be totally peaceful and comfortable.
You should not let anything interrupt your sleep as only a well-slept person can be 100% energetic and efficient at his work.
In the past several years, it has been seen that in New York, California, Illinois, Florida, Washington, Texas, and many other states of America, people are being practically harassed by the presence of bed bugs in their homes. Some are even seeking therapy for themselves. However, most of the people and even exterminators are extremely stunned by the growing population of bed bugs in their homes, shops and offices.
Bed bugs infestation
Until a few years ago, bed bugs were unheard of in cities like New York, but now they have become a headache for the residents of this city. Their presence has gotten to the point that people have started calling it an epidemic. The reason behind this infestation is a topic of debate. Some people think that it is because of climate change and global warming, while others take it as just as an infestation that has grown to a huge proportion due to the large population of the cities.
Some people also suggest that this problem points out that the infestation is a sign that our homes and cities are not as clean as we think they are. Unfortunately, cleanliness is not in question anymore when it comes to bed bugs. They even infest the cleanest of areas, such as hospitals. Our technicians are experts in exterminating and treating bed bug infestations.
Whatever the real reason might be, the truth is that bed bugs have become a nuisance of colossal proportion, and we must fight them. “Do it yourself” treatments are incomparable to professional treatments. The bed bug problem we face today is not to be overlooked as it will spread and worsen. But before you can get rid of bed bugs, you must know what these bugs really are.
What are bed bugs?
Contrary to their name, bed bugs are not exclusive to beds. These tiny pests come from the Cimicidae family of insects. They are about the size of an apple seed when they are fully grown. They drink blood to survive and can bite anyone from animals to people. However, they can survive for a little over a year without feeding. They hide in soft and confined places where they directly contact the skin tissues of animals and humans.
Make sure you read our article: “Can bed bugs bite thru clothing?”
They are called bed bugs because they mostly bite us during nighttime, when we are asleep, as they need a body in a stationary position to feed. But bed bugs can also bite you during the daytime. Their bites are often confused with that of mosquitoes because both leave a similar “tiny and itchy red mark on the skin. This is because bed bugs bite us in a manner similar to mosquitoes. They insert a tiny tentacle inside the skin to suck the blood out. To dilute the blood, they first release a protein inside our veins. This makes it easier for them to drink the blood.
How do bed bugs spread?
Bed bugs can spread through anything warm and soft. It can be our clothes, luggage, hair, body or pets. The worst part of this epidemic is that it is very difficult to safeguard one’s home or office against them. They can commute through anything and can survive on the upholstery, carpets, mattresses or anything that gives them a warm and humid place to survive.
Even you can be the source of bed bugs in your house. If you stay at a hotel, stay at a friend’s house, eat in a restaurant where they have bed bugs, go to a theatre that has bed bugs, then you can also become their carrier. If you have furry pet animals or allowed any animal in the house, even the animal itself can bring bed bugs into your house. Even a child’s stuffed toy can bring bed bugs to your house.
Bed bugs larva
Now, you cannot stop people from coming into your home or check them for bed bugs every time they walk into your home. Well, you can, but that would just be weird. Then how can one get rid of these pesky little pests?
Early signs of bed bugs on sheets
To find out if they are, in fact, bed bug feces is to see if there are tiny black spots or dots on sheets or within the seams of your mattresses. This is a good sign of bed bugs on sheets. Sometimes, you may not see them on sheets because they are so small. Once you see bites or rash-like spots on your chest or other areas around your body, it could be fleas or those other pests called bed bugs. If you have children, you may want to get a professional. One way to test if you have them is to get a towel or tissue and rub them against the seams of your mattress. In fact, if they are bed bugs, then what you’ll see is a smear when you rub on it.
How will you know the bed bugs?
Bed bugs are some of the most nuisance pests that can infest your home. This is why it is important to put all measures to ensure they do not infest your home. To assist you in this process, here are six tips on how to control bed bugs.
1. Cover all crevices
Bed bugs usually hide in crevices. You can control them by ensuring that you cover these crevices. Cover all electric outlets and repair all broken windows to make your house unconducive for their stay and breeding.
2. Inspect items you bring in the house
It is possible to bring in bed bugs into your house from items that you bring from outside. Therefore, one of the best ways to control these bed bugs is to ensure that you do a thorough inspection of all items you bring into the house. This will ensure that they do not act as the source of the bed bugs in your house. Some of these items include dolls, clothing, bags, luggage, among others.
3. Carry out regular inspection
It is vital to carry out regular inspections to ensure there is no bed bug infestation in your home. You need to check under your beds and all other corners of your home to ensure that there are no signs of bed bug infestations. You can hire a pest control company with the necessary knowledge and skill on how to do professional bed bugs inspections to control these pests from invading your house.
4. Eliminate clutter in your home
The clutter that you leave in your home compound can act as conducive breeding places for bed bugs. To ensure that you control them, make sure that you get rid of all the clutter in your compound. You can dispose of used products or even donate them instead of leaving them lying idle in your compound.
5. Perform regular washing
Your blankets, clothing and sheets can act as breeding places for bed bugs if you do not wash them regularly. By doing thorough washing, you will be able to remove all the eggs and any bed bugs that might be clinging to them. To eliminate them completely, you need to heat and dry them after you finish the washing.
6. Apply pesticides
This is the most popular way that you can control bed bugs. All you need to do is to apply the pesticides directly into their hiding places or where you suspect they might be hiding. There are dust and liquid pesticides you can apply to eliminate and control them completely.
Bed bug bites
When you wake up scratchy and feeling itchy, the only thing to do is this test, which may be other types of a nuisance like fleas. Doctors or exterminators will not tell you if your bite or rash is coming from a bed bug, so don’t bother asking. The saliva, when injected into you when feeding, is what you don’t want. This is what’s causing the itching, in fact.
The odor of bed bug infestations
Bed bugs don’t need to be fed for about six months. But, if you move to an apartment or home and look beautiful, neat and clean, it doesn’t mean it is. They can stay on the carpets. A massive bedbug infestation is an odor. If it smells like raw meat or beef, like spoiled meat like the smell, overly sweet or musty, then it could be bed bugs. Inspect for feces quickly.
If you ever wake up itching on your legs, face, back, or forearms, it could be bed bugs. The good thing to know is that they don’t carry any infested diseases. What they do is they spread. They’ve contributed to children’s anemia. So, the thing to do when testing for bed bugs is to take a feces smear test.
The bed bug feces test
The bed bugs feces smear test is not difficult, but you want to tackle the problem before it worsens and spreads. It can spread to the floor as well and if you have carpet, then make sure you tackle the mattresses and blankets first. Here is the best way to test for bed bugs when you feel you have them on your mattresses.
When you have them, you’ll see that they are visible. They are about the size of a sesame seed. In fact, they only like to eat at night. Plus, if you have them, you’ll be able to see them in the daytime. Check behind the headboards, plus they like to be close to food – yes, that would be you and your blood. Check your mattress’ seams and the carpet, plus under the beds. They can live on the windowsills too. Other places they like living in are the curtains and around the bed area. Call an exterminator as soon as you find out that you do have them.
Get rid of bed bugs
Finally, don’t panic because they can be dealt with. Hiring a professional exterminator is the best way to get rid of them. Since they can live for six months before you find out they even exist, wash all your sheets regularly. You want your mattresses changed out every 3-5 years to be on the safe side. Remember, when testing for these nuisances, they will smear. So, smear them out of your life and rid them once and for all.