Bed bugs signs and symptoms
Bed bugs top the list of the most feared household pests. Once they invade your home, these pesky little pests won’t come out easily as they want to remain close to you to continue feeding on your blood. They know where you rest while watching TV or sleeping; they’ll just relax there waiting for you to come so that they start feasting on your blood. Interestingly, you may not feel anything unusual while these bugs are siphoning your blood since their saliva act as a numbing agent. You are likely to experience some symptoms some hours or days after the bite. However, not all bites or marks on your skin are caused by bed bugs; they could as a result of other insects such as mosquitoes.
What do bed bugs look like?
A bed bug is a small insect with a flat and oval-shaped body. The length of a bed bug ranges from one to seven millimeters. The adults have reddish-brown bodies while the nymphs’ can be whitish or bright red. A bed bug doesn’t have wings but crawls very fast.
Here are the common symptoms of bed bugs:
Red, itchy bites
As mentioned earlier, bed bugs conduct their blood-sucking missions in a manner that won’t cause you pain. This makes it hard to realize that these bugs have found their way into your home until symptoms appear, perhaps minutes, hours or days after a bed bug bite. bed bug bites appear as flat, red welts formed in minor clusters or zigzag lines or straight rows. Although you can’t contract a bed bug disease as a result of the bites, they can be very irritating.
The bites are usually accompanied by an itchy sensation. Upon scratching the bites, the affected skin area can start to breed while your vulnerability to a secondary infection increases.
Besides, scratching the bite can make the affected area to swell and redden. Therefore, if you wake up to itchy and red bites on your skin, it could be an indication that some bed bugs were busy sucking your blood while you were asleep at night.
If you feeling itchy on your skin at night while you are asleep or about to sleep, especially in your exposed body areas such as arms, face, legs and the like, you are possibly having a bed bug problem. Bed bugs hide in or near your bed and are mostly active at night. Therefore, you are likely to experience the symptoms at night while sleeping if your body is highly sensitive to the bites. Otherwise, you are likely to feel and see the symptoms many hours later.
Blood stains on your bed sheets/ pajamas
When bed bugs bite you, your skin may bleed slightly and the blood may stain your sleeping clothes, pillows or bed sheets. Besides, the blood spots could be as a result of crushed bed bugs. When you lie on a bed bug that has just fed, it will burst and release the fresh blood that it had just sucked. When it comes into contact with your bedding or clothes, the blood will stain them. The stains look like small rust spots.
An unpleasant, musty odor
When a bed bug infestation is heavy, you are most likely to sense an intense, unpleasant, musty smell in your house, especially in your bedroom. The odor is almost similar to that of a dirty locker room or a wet towel. Some people also liken the stench to the mess of coriander.
Oval, brown exoskeletons
As bed bugs develop from the nymph stage to adulthood, they shed off their outer shells in a process called molting. These shells are brown and oval-shaped. Look for these exoskeletons in the major bed bug nesting places such as along headboard, under your mattress, along the edges of your couch and in or along the hems of your mattress.
Stay woke to know when bed bugs have invaded your place by watching out these signs. In case you are not certain of the safety of your home as far as a bed bug infestation is concerned, it is advisable that you seek help from a reputable bed bug control professional.