Are you waking up with bed bug bites?
You could be sleeping with the enemy.
When your home becomes infested with bed bugs, your first order of business becomes treating your bites, then ridding your home of the bugs. It is important to determine whether you have a bed bug infestation or if it is some other type of pest.
How do you know that you have bed bugs?
If you notice any small bites upon waking, you might have bed bugs. These bites appear as tiny, red spots and their itchy nature will have you scratching yourself until you pick up some anti-itch cream to slather onto your bites.
You won’t have just one. Your legs and arms will be covered. It will seem like a very tiny mosquito attacked you repeatedly.
These bites look different from mosquito bites, but they occur in droves. If you see a single bite, it is something else.
You will probably want to stop itching before all else, so pick up one of the following:
- An oral antihistamine like Benadryl, scientifically known as diphenhydramine,
- A hydrocortisone skin cream such as Cortaid.
You could possibly develop a skin infection if you scratch the bites. This is why anti-itch meds are so important. If you develop an infection, go to the doctor for an antibiotic.
What are the signs of a Bed Bug infestation?
Before you make up your bed, look at the sheets carefully.
Do you see any dark specs on the sheets or in the mattress seams?
That is bed bug excrement. They went to the bathroom in your bed.
Do you see small, yellow exoskeletons?
Bed bugs molt. It occurs five times before they become adults, so those pale yellow shells in the bedsheets signify a growing young bed bug.
Do you see red or rust-colored stains on your sheets?
Those are blood smears. You killed a bed bug during the night. You probably rolled over and squished it.
Bed bugs are most active at night. These night owls hide in wall crevices or burrow in the furniture and mattress until dark. Then they come out to bite you. You should inspect your bed at night to see if you can find active bed bugs if you have unexplainable bites.
It is a common myth that a dirty house attracts bed bugs. While this might be partially true, a more likely cause is when they hitchhike a ride into your home attached to another human. If you live alone, you probably had one — and it only takes one — attach to you in a hotel, motel, or some other spot you slept.
How to get rid of bed bugs?
You need to get rid of the bed bugs once and for all. They can hide. They do not need to eat regularly either. In fact, a bed bug can go for months without eating. These are hearty little survivalists.
Hire a professional exterminator to get rid of the bed bugs. These exterminators will use both pesticides and nonchemical treatments. You can make their job go faster and improve the effectiveness of their treatment by three things.
- Vacuum: Thoroughly vacuum your room, the curtain, the walls, especially the crevices and cracks in the walls. You can suck them out this way. Immediately empty vacuum cleaner after this outside. You want to actually remove the bedbugs from your home, not just relocate them to the kitchen trash or such.
- Launder the Bedding: Take all the bed sheets off of the mattress and wash them in hot water. Dry them on high heat. This will increase chances of killing the bed bugs on clothing, too, so wash your laundry this way.
- Freezing: If it is winter, you can drag your mattress outside and let it freeze. The sunshine helps kill the bed bugs, but so do the temperatures below 32 F (0 C). The mattress needs to stay in the freezing temps for more than one day.
You can skip the last one and simply wait for the professional exterminator after the vacuuming and laundry. Your bed bugs exterminator may use a portable device that will raise the bedroom’s temperature to above 122 F (50 C). This proves lethal to all bed bugs at any life stage.
Something about those pieces of furniture drew the bed bugs to it. It was you. The bed bugs were attracted to you and how you smell. Your furniture probably smells like you.
Getting rid of bed bugs doesn’t always mean you have to get rid of all your furniture. However, you may not be able to save a heavily infested furniture piece. Do you really want to sit on dead bed bugs anyway? You might need to throw out a mattress or couch that just has too much bed bug infestation to save. But in most cases, you can keep your furniture, after having a pest control expert exterminate the bed bugs.
Getting rid of bed bugs by not breathing at night?
You cannot do much about the number one thing that attracts bed bugs. That is breathing and you kind of have to keep doing that. Bed bugs are attracted to the carbon dioxide humans breathe out. Stopping breathing at night might fix the problem, but you might die in the process, so that might not be the best idea for getting rid of bed bugs.
Bed bugs love it when humans sleep because we breathe, and we are inattentive, so they get to feed unfettered. Make a list of places you slept in the two months before you started noticing the bites. You probably picked it up somewhere in that list. A single bed bug could travel home with you, hitching a ride on your suitcase. It lays eggs and populates your household.
While they invade in a very simple manner, you can get rid of them just as easily by calling a professional bed bug exterminator. The combination of chemicals, heat treatment, and your vacuuming and laundering of items address the problem. You can get rid of bed bugs. Call us today and we’ll help you get rid of those bed bugs!
John Brezden, Founder
Brezden Pest Control
3261 South Higuera St, Suite 100
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Fax: (805) 544-2807
About Brezden Pest Control: Brezden Pest Control provides bed bug control, rodent control, bird control, ant control, and termite treatment services in the San Luis Obispo area. Keep your home and business pest-free with commercial pest control and home pest control services. “Like” the Facebook page to receive information on termite treatment. Call 805-544-9446 today for a local pest control estimate. Visit the website to download a copy of the “Top 10 Reasons Customers Choose Brezden