Bed Bugs: How do they Start, Spread, and Where they Hide

how do bed bugs start

It’s a nightmare scenario; you’ve just moved into your dream home, and the dreaded bedbugs have already made their presence known within days. But how did they get there? What are the signs to look out for when inspecting new homes or hotels before moving in?

And worse yet, where do these nasty insects like to hide and breed? Today we’ll explore everything you need to know about these small rodents of destruction – from how they start and spread to even which sneaky spots they use for shelter.

So, grab yourself a cup of tea, and let’s investigate the fascinating topic

What are Bed Bugs?

Insects of the genus Cimex lectularius, often known as bed bugs, are tiny, wingless parasites that feed exclusively on the blood of mammals, birds, and humans, especially during the night.

Bedbugs have a reddish-brown appearance, lack wings, vary in size from 1mm to 7mm (approximately the size of Lincoln’s head on a coin), and may go many months without needing a food/blood source. 

Where Are They Found?

Bugs that feed on blood may be found on every continent except Antarctica. Infestations of these pests have been more often associated with underdeveloped regions.

Still, in recent years they have expanded swiftly across the developed regions of the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and even several European nations.

Even the cleanest of hotels and resorts might contain bugs since their existence has nothing to do with tidiness.

Bugs that feed on human blood are often seen in and around bedrooms. Flats, hostels, rooming dwellings, hotels, cruise ships, vehicles, railroads, and dormitories all fall into this category.

You may find them hiding throughout the day in the nooks and creases of your mattress, bed frame, box spring, headboard, wardrobe, wallpaper, or wherever else there is debris.

Although bedbugs have been clocked, traveling over 100 feet in a single night, most infestations occur within a radius of 8 feet from a person’s sleeping area.

How do They Start?

A single pregnant female is all it takes to start an infestation. A single female lays five eggs daily and up to 500 eggs during her lifetime. 

They can live up to 200-40 days without food, depending on the temperature and humidity in their environment.

So, if you’ve recently moved into a new home, chances are the they were already there waiting for you. They can easily be transported to new locations via personal belongings, luggage, furniture, and even clothing.

How do They Spread?

Bedbugs can travel from one location to another by crawling or attaching themselves to objects. They can also spread through indirect contacts, such as when a person sleeps on a bed in an infested home and then moves to another location.

They spread through:

  • Luggage, furniture, and clothing
  • Through electrical outlets and wiring 
  • Animals
  • Other people who have been in an infested area 

Do They Spread Disease?

They do not pose a significant health risk and are not known to spread any diseases, but they can cause skin irritation, insomnia, anxiety, and, in extreme cases, anemia. This is because they feed off your blood, leaving behind a nasty red bite mark that can be itchy and irritating.

Studies say that while these bugs do not carry diseases, they can act as vectors for disease because they can pick up germs on their bodies and then transfer them to humans when they feed. 

According to surveys, about 30–60% of persons bit by them show no symptoms at all.

They can also cause allergic reactions. Bedbug bites may cause varying human reactions, from complete immunity to severe itching, blistering, and even hives in hypersensitive people.

These reactions may manifest as itchy bites, painful bumps at the site of the wound, and even anaphylaxis in extreme cases.

Where Do They Hide?

These tiny psts are nocturnal insects and prefer to hide in small, dark places during the day. They have been known to hide in:

  • Mattresses, box springs, and bed frames
  • Sofa cushions 
  • Electrical outlets and wiring 
  • Behind baseboards, wallpaper, and picture frames 
  • Clutter, such as books and papers 
  • Behind headboards or bed skirts

How to Prevent?

The best way to prevent is by practicing good hygiene and regularly inspecting your home for any signs of an infestation. Make sure to: 

  • Do not bring secondhand furniture or mattresses into your home 
  • Check hotel rooms before staying in them 
  • Wash and dry all clothes and bedding items on the highest heat setting 
  • Vacuum regularly and dispose of the vacuum cleaner bag immediately 
  • Seal cracks and crevices around your home 
  • Use mattresses, box springs, and pillow cover to protect them.

They can be a nightmare, but following the steps above can help prevent and control an infestation. It’s important to remember that they are resilient pests.

An infestation can take weeks or even months to eradicate, so it’s best to call a professional exterminator as soon as you notice any signs of infestation.

With the right equipment and knowledge, a professional can quickly identify the source of the infestation and work to eliminate it using the safest, most effective methods. 

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