Facts About Bed Bugs

Facts About Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are small, brownish insects that feed on the blood of people, other mammals and birds. Young bed bugs are very tiny and hard to see. They grow up to be adults that have the size and shape of an apple seed.

What do bed bugs do?

Bed bugs lay tiny, whitish eggs that are very small and hard to see. Bed bugs do not spread human disease. 

Bed bugs hide close to where you sleep, sit or rest. They like to hide in dark out of the way places. 

Bed bugs come out of their hiding spots to feed. They usually come out at night to feed when people are sleeping. They feed on exposed skin for about 10 minutes and then they return to a hiding spot. 

Some people get an itchy swelling from a bed bug bite but some people do not react at all.

If you do not have any reaction, a bed bug infestation can go unnoticed, because they are often well hidden during the day. Unnoticed infestations can result in bed bugs spreading within a building or neighbourhood.

How to check for bed bugs

Bed bugs are becoming more common so it is a good idea to get in the habit of checking for then every time you make the bed. Check in mattress folds and behind corner guards for tiny black specks of bed bug poop which can point the way to bed bug hiding spots. Also check near baseboards in the bedroom and on couches and soft chairs where you would tend to sit a lot.

How are Bed Bugs Spread?

Bed bugs hitch rides to get into your home. Bed bugs can be brought in on items like backpacks, purses, furniture, clothing or luggage.

How are Bed Bugs Controlled?

Bed bugs are difficult to deal with and require treatment by a certified pest control technician. If you live in a multiple unit building, it is very important that bed bugs be reported to the building manager. Without proper treatment, infestations can spread through a building.

More on bed bug control at VCH.ca

What to do at home

For bed bug bites:
  • Resist the urge to scratch. If children scratch the bites too much, they may become infected.
  • Wash the bite areas with soap and water to reduce the risk of infection.
  • Apply an ice pack to relieve swelling.
  • See your doctor if a bite becomes infected or if you have an allergic reaction to a bed bug bite.

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