Last week we inspected a Chicago Area home for Bed Bugs. A family member complained of unexplainable bites and discomfort while others had no signs of bites or skin irritation whatsoever.
This is not an uncommon scenario. The reaction to bed bug bites varies dramatically depending upon the person. Based on skin sensitivities, some reactions cause dramatic welts similar to mosquito bites that have been further irritated by consistent scratching. Some have mild reactions and others (roughly 50%) have no reaction whatsoever.
Bed bug bites are normally found on exposed areas of the body while sleeping – arms, legs and shoulders are the most commonly affected areas. In many cases, bed bug bites are in straight lines or in clusters and itch similar to mosquito bites. Additionally, like mosquitos, bed bugs require blood meal… it’s 100% of their food source. Prior to feeding, bed bugs inject a numbing agent into the skin which allows the bed bug to feed without detection. The feeding process takes just 3 to 5 minutes and the bugs detach from the skin once gorged with blood. Since bed bugs are nocturnal, they slip into hiding places between the mattress seams, box spring, headboards, baseboards and carpeting and begin to digest their meal. Click here to find more information on where to commonly find bed bugs.
Luckily, bed bugs do not transmit disease but their bites may cause an allergic reaction requiring additional medical attention. Over the counter antiseptic creams and ointments provide relief for most and begin healing existing bites. But, bed bugs multiple quickly and will continue biting if action is not taken to exterminate them from your living area. Lastly, if left untreated, bed bugs may cause more psychological harm then physical discomfort by way of insomnia. Contact your local bed bug extermination expert for more information on Bed bug bites, bed bug detection, inspection and treatment if needed.
For tips on how to avoid bed bugs while traveling click here.