A pest infestation of any kind is disturbing – but bed bugs are enough to strike fear in even the bravest of people. The sheer number of them, the difficulty in controlling their population growth, and the mere thought of bugs crawling on you when you sleep is more than most can bear. It’s important to know the signs of a bed bug infestation so immediate action can be taken in the early stages of a problem.
- Dark brown or rust-colored stains on bed linens, pillows, and mattresses.
As if bed bugs were not disgusting enough in their own right, they leave trails of excrement throughout the places they frequent…namely, your bed. It’s also important to check the walls and other hiding places that surround the bed, usually within an eight-foot proximity.
- Blood stains on your sheets, pillowcases, or blankets.
Bed bugs will feed on a host and then scurry away to a nearby hiding place…however, their trail back home is quite dangerous when it involves dodging flailing limbs and people rolling over in their sleep. If you inadvertently roll over and smash a bed bug that has just fed, there will be a tell-tale blood spot left behind.
- A distinct musty odor around hiding places.
The scent glands of a bed bug emit a certain odor that may be noticeable around their hiding places, which are typically close to beds. Bed bugs can hide in cracks, crevices, outlets, even telephone receivers…anywhere, really, that will offer them protection and respite between their treks to feed.
- Empty shells found around hiding places.
Bed bugs molt (shed) several times during their life cycle, so if you have a bed bug infestation you may find empty shells lying around their hiding places. These are discarded exoskeletons and are an indicator of a bed bug infestation.
- Bug bites found on the skin that weren’t there the night before.
Bed bugs feed on hosts at night and will often leave bite marks in semi-straight lines, usually in groups of three. The bites can also bleed, which is another reason you might find blood on your sheets and bed linens.
Pregnant females can lay several eggs per day, a sure sign of an infestation in the home. Check the undersides of bed frames for small, white ovals that may even have an eyespot on them, depending on the stage of development they’re in. It’s important to remain vigilant when it comes to bed bugs, especially if you regularly purchase second-hand furniture and clothing or live in apartments or other close community quarters. Being able to identify a bed bug infestation will allow you to take action quickly if there is an infestation, stopping the problem to avoid the bedbugs multiplying more or spreading to other areas. If you have a home or business in the greater St. Louis area and find evidence of a bed bug infestation, call Unitech Pest and Termite Control to quickly and completely eradicate the problem.