How to Do a Proper Bed Bug Inspection: 5 Signs to Know
Bed bugs are notoriously difficult to detect and not to mention some of the most difficult pests to eliminate. However, failure to notice and address these creepy crawly critters early on can lead to a massive infestation that can wreak havoc on your home or business, causing you to lose money and sleep down the line.
The best way to deal with bed bugs is to prevent them from invading your space in the first place. However, if you suspect that you already have a bed bug infestation, it will help to do a thorough visual bed bug inspection in your home.
Bed Bugs 101
Bed bugs are tiny, flat, nocturnal pests whose adults can reach the size of an apple seed. They naturally have a brown colour but usually take on a more reddish shade after feeding on the blood of their host – with the preferred animal host being humans.
These critters are quite smart and know to stay as close as possible to their preferred host – you. Thus, as their name strongly suggests, they often reside in bedding, mattresses, and box springs. However, you can also find them in many other places like clothing, walls, sofa, furniture, frames, purses, bags, and even electrical devices.
How Hard Can Bed Bug Inspection Be?
Well, anyone who’s ever dealt with these annoying insects before will tell you that detecting bed bugs is one of the hardest things they’ve had to do. These opportunistic little bugs will make a home in just about any crack or crevice they come across, making it almost impossible to spot them unless you have x-ray vision. So unsurprisingly, you may have a widespread infestation without even knowing it.
But if you can’t outright see these insects, how can you possibly know if you have a bed bug problem? Luckily for you, below, we have provided a list of 5 telltale signs to help get you on the path to proper bed bug inspection:
If you’ve recently started waking up covered in unexplainable red marks, you may have bed bugs. Bites are perhaps the most common sign of a bed bug infestation. For more evidence, bed bug bites look like flat or raised red welts that appear in rows or clusters. Bite marks often appear on the commonly exposed parts of the body, including on the arms, neck, and face.
But you should note that people may react differently to bed bug bites. In some cases, individuals may not experience any visible reactions. Regardless, if you’ve been bitten, don’t panic since bed bugs don’t spread diseases like other pests. However, their bites can be itchy and may lead to allergic reactions like blisters, hives, or rashes. If you develop such a reaction, you need to see a doctor.
2. Blood Stains
Blood stains are another common sign of a bed bug infestation, but one that most people tend to overlook. These tiny stains (reddish or rusty colored) often appear when you move or roll over in bed and squash a bed bug that was recently feeding on you or your partner. So, if you wake up covered with bites and notice that your sheets are covered with blood stains, there is no better sign of dealing with a bed bug infestation.
3. Bed Bug Feces
Besides blood stains, bed bug faeces are another visible sign of a bed bug infestation. Dried bed bug faeces often appear as dark or black stains on your sheets. Bed bug faecal matter can be found in many other places besides your sheets.
Ensure to also check along the seams of the mattress, the edges and corners of box springs, and areas in and around the headboard. Also, make sure to inspect all the furniture in your bedroom, including dressers and nightstands. Remember to inspect the cracks and corners of drawers for signs of bed bug faeces.
As if the above-mentioned weren’t gross enough, be prepared for more nastiness in your bed bug inspection endeavor. To add to your list of potential signs to look out for are bed bug eggs and empty shells. And best believe that there will be lots and lots of them. One female bed bug can lay more than five eggs a day, which means that it will have laid over 500 eggs by the time its soul leaves its body.
Bed bug eggs are small and vary in colour ranging from translucent to white. These eggs have a shape resembling a grain of rice. The empty shells are tiny at around 1 mm. Thus, zeroing in on them may take quite a bit of effort and possibly a magnifying glass. When trying to track down bed bug eggs, you need to go all out. You have to carefully check even the smallest nooks and crannies.
Bed bug shells are quite common when dealing with a bed bug infestation. As part of their natural growth process, young bed bugs will shed their skin, leaving a clear and empty exoskeleton. They do this a total of 5 times before they reach maturity, which means a ton load of bedbug skin, which won’t be missed during your inspection.
How to Search for Bed Bugs
After learning about all the key signs to look out for when dealing with a bed bug infestation, the next step is actually tracking down these pesky pests. Below, we have provided some quick-and-simple steps to find these insects before they completely overrun your home or business.
Look out for signs of bed bugs on your bed sheets, including in the mattress seams, in and around the headboard, between the mattress and box spring, and on the carpet under the bed. Don’t forget to pull the bed away from the wall and check the backside.
Next, inspect all furniture close to your bed. Empty your dressers and nightstands, carefully inspecting all cracks and corners. Also, remove the drawers and check their undersides. Don’t forget to check under the furniture for signs of bed bugs.
If you, unfortunately, find signs of bed bugs in your bedroom, you’ll also need to inspect all the other rooms in the house. Bed bugs are always on the move, and if you find bed bugs in one room, it is safe to say that they may be in other rooms too.
While this may sound like a lot of work, bed bug inspection is something that you can’t afford to take lightly. A single bed bug can lead to a full-blown infestation, which can cost you a lot of time, money, and sleepless nights.
For you to effectively win the war against these pesky pests, you need to bring out the big guns – a professional pest control company. Reliable pest control companies possess the necessary training, equipment, and experience to track them down, properly identify them, quickly get rid of them, and ensure that they do not come back.