When bed bugs get into a home, they can be tormenting pests to deal with. Bed bugs are blood-eating insects that live almost exclusively with humans, feeding on us while we sleep. Today, we're going to hit on all the important facts you should know about bed bugs. We'll talk about how they get in, where they hide, what dangers they present and, most importantly, what you can do to prevent these insects from finding a meal inside your home.
How Bed Bugs Get In
It is important to understand that bed bugs don't live in your yard and they don't prefer to feed on other mammals. Human blood is their dietary staple. Therefore, there isn't anything you can do to the exterior of your home to keep bed bugs out. These bugs will get into your home like the soldiers who hid in the Trojan horse. They will be brought in by you or someone else.
Where Bed Bugs Hide
You may be tempted to think that bed bugs only hide in beds, but this couldn't be further from the truth. Bed bugs can be found infesting many locations. It is important to understand this because you can bring bed bugs into your home when you purchase used items. It is a good idea to always inspect items you bring into your home. Here are a few items bed bugs use as hiding places:
- Alarm clocks, televisions, computers, and other electronic items
- Upholstered chairs, couches, and futons
- Bed frames, nightstands, dressers, and other furniture in bedrooms
- Bed bugs will target any furniture item within a home that has a seat, including pianos
When bed bugs get in, they hide in many places. While they certainly prefer bed frames, mattresses, and box springs, you may find them in the following locations as well:
- Behind baseboards and crown molding
- Underneath carpet edges
- In electrical outlets
- Inside wall voids
- In cracks and crevices in wood floors
The Dangers Bed Bugs Present
The prevailing opinion about bed bugs is that they do not present a health threat to people. Most infestations are not considered a disease threat. But there are a few points to consider. There are some who have an allergy to bed bugs and the bites these insects inflict can cause greater suffering. Prolonged exposure to bed bugs can create an increasing allergic reaction to the anticoagulant in the saliva of these insects, making non-allergic individuals more allergic, over time. If bed bugs are allowed to continue to bite, it can lead to anemia, as continual bloodletting is not good. You may ask, "Why would anyone allow this?" There is one demographic that is highly susceptible to this threat. Most elderly people have minor skin reactions to bed bug bites and can have many bites without realizing there is a serious threat to their health.
It is possible to get very sick from bed bugs. The chances are extremely low but it is important to keep this in mind. A recent Penn State study concluded that bed bugs have the ability to transmit Chagas disease, a potentially deadly disease. If bed bugs are exposed to the bacterium Trypanosoma cruzi, which causes Chagas, they can infect subsequent people they bite. Fortunately, the conditions required for the spread of Chagas from one person to another is complicated.
How To Prevent Bed Bug Bites
Keeping bed bugs out of your home isn't an easy task. There isn't a simple solution. Plus, there are many ways you can accidentally invite bed bugs into your home. There is only one way to prevent bed bug infestations with any success, and that is to learn as much as you can about them. The more you know, the greater your chances of seeing bed bugs before they get into your home.
Take some time to learn how to identify bed bugs in all stages of development. Learn the signs they leave, such as tiny black droppings, shed skins, dried bloodstains, and white eggs, and teach everyone in your home to recognize these insects and the warning signs they leave. If you suspect that you or someone in your home has been exposed to bed bugs, run clothing, bedding, bags, and other items through a 30-minute dryer cycle. If items can't be put in the dryer, keep them outside of your home until they can be properly inspected and treated by a professional.
If bed bugs infest your home, reach out to the bed bug control professionals at Innovative Pest Control. We offer effective bed bug solutions for tormenting pests like bed bugs and we can also assist you with the inspection of suspected items. Reach out to us today for immediate assistance in Longview and throughout our East Texas service area.