Bed Bug infestations are what we here in the Carolinas are told to look for when traveling - in strange homes, hotels, motels, etc. Bed bugs are, however, so adept at hiding and stealth that it is not uncommon to find them in your own home despite meticulous housecleaning; they simply are excellent at hiding until you decide to take a hard look for them and find out that it is too late - you have them!
WHAT ARE BED BUGS?
Per Wikipedia - "Bed bugs are insects from the genus Cimex that feed on human blood, usually at night. Their bites can result in a number of health impacts including skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms. Bed bug bites may lead to skin changes ranging from small areas of redness to prominent blisters."
you could easily mistake a bed bug for a common tick at a quick glance
With a quick glance, you could easily mistake a bed bug for a common tick - they are of similar size and color and both have a liking for human blood (possibly related to vampires??). Bed bugs are travelers, easily able to be transported by common items in your suitcase (thus making them a common nuisance in hotels). They cling to fabrics, blankets, clothes, and linens easily and can survive extended periods in this state. Bed bugs bites are easily misdiagnosed as a more common mosquito bite. Indeed, they can feast on various parts of the body and often are known by the inching and blistering common after their bites.
bed bug bites can often be mistaken for mosquito bites
In an effort to better educate the general public on the behaviors of bed bugs, Bed Bug Awareness Week is a designation recognized by the Chase Calendar of Events to remind everyone to be alert to the dangers of bed bugs as they travel. The Professional Pest Management Alliance (PPMA), which serves as the public outreach arm of the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), is observing the week by educating the public through various media relations and social media tactics on the signs of an infestation and the importance of working with a licensed pest control professional.
“While many Americans are opting to take vacations within driving distance of their home this year, the risk of bed bug encounters remains just as high as ever, if not more so,” said Cindy Mannes, executive director of PPMA. “Bed bugs can survive for several months without a blood meal and could be hungry if they have survived unnoticed after decreased travel amid the pandemic, making it imperative for the industry to ensure Americans understand bed bug infestations should be treated by a professional.”
“Bed bugs are not a DIY pest, so it is important for pest control companies to join us in spreading awareness,” added Mannes. “We encourage companies to devote their social media pages to all-things bed bugs using the hashtag #BedBugAwarenessWeek in all posts and interactions on social properties from June 6-12 to join in the observance.”
It is important to diagnose a possible bed bug infestation quickly; though they do not fly
but they can move quickly across walls, carpet, flooring, and even ceilings. Female bed bugs can lay hundreds of eggs (which are practically indistinguishable from specs of dust - they are tiny). Under favorable conditions the bugs can develop fully in as little as a month and produce three or more generations per year.
SIGNS OF AN INFESTATION
If you wake up with itchy areas you didn't have the day before, you may have bed bugs, particularly if you got a used bed or other used furniture around the time the bites started. Other signs that you have bed bugs may include:
Blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases
Dark or rusty spots of bedbug excrement on sheets and mattresses, bed clothes, and walls
Bedbug fecal spots, egg shells, or shed skins in areas where bedbugs hide
An offensive, musty odor from the bugs' scent glands
If you suspect an infestation, remove all bedding and check it carefully for signs of the bugs or their excrement. Remove the dust cover over the bottom of the box springs and examine the seams in the wood framing. Peel back the fabric where it is stapled to the wood frame. Also, check the area around the bed, including inside books or magazines, telephones or radios, the edge of the carpet, and even in electrical outlets. Additionally, check your closet, as bedbugs can attach to clothing. If you are uncertain about signs of bedbugs, of if you believe you may have a bed bug problem, then it is best to call Nelon-Cole and tell us what you see. We may be able to help diagnose the problem right over the phone, and offer subsequent remedies immediately.
The Carolinas can be rough this time of year when dealing with household and outdoor pests. We are here to help you, with trained professionals who know the Carolina climates well, and how to deal with unwanted bed bugs and any other pests in our region. We are standing by to help you TODAY. If you suspect issues you can contact us toll-free for a FREE no-obligation consultation - we want to put our experience to work for YOU. Call 888-7-TheWeb!