There’s an old saying ‘sleep tight and don’t let the bed bugs bite’, but bed bugs or Cimex lectularius are not just confined to beds. And they can travel.
What are Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs are bloodsucking or hematophagous insects and are attracted to their hosts by carbon dioxide, warmth and certain chemicals which we humans exude. They prefer areas of exposed skin to feed on, so bedtime is an ideal time for them as we generally have exposed arms, neck and face.
Adult bed bugs grow to around 4-5mm and are reddish brown in colour and can sometimes be mistaken for other insects but will emit a bad odour when crushed. They can come into your home in various ways; on clothing, used sofas or beds and in luggage – and because of their flattened bodies, can hide in tiny spaces.
How can I tell if I have Bed Bugs?
Have you woken up itching? Then you may have a bed bug problem. If you notice blood stains on your pillowcase or sheets, dark or rusty coloured spots on sheets and mattresses or an offensive musty smell, then these are also signs of bed bug presence.
What can I do to prevent Bed Bugs?
You can help to reduce the risk of bed bugs in your home by checking any second hand furniture you buy before you bring it home. Using a protective mattress cover to eliminate places where bugs can hide and hoovering frequently making sure you include the bed and surrounding area will all help.
However, if you do find that you have an infestation then the best thing to do is to call in the experts who understand the source of the issue and are best placed to eradicate and treat the problem. They will have the experience to understand the source of the issue and how best to resolve any infestation, something which can also result in treatment being more specific and isolated – without which the issue could be made worse, spread and not be resolved, which can increase the time and cost to then resolve professionally. They can also dispose of infested beds, sofas, carpets and treat luggage.
Pest control professionals will have access to chemicals that will treat the problem effectively as bed bugs have become increasingly resistant to over the counter insecticides making it safer for you and your family. And you’ll know that the bed bugs won’t be biting anymore!