Bed bugs are insects with six legs and a flat oval body. They can have different colours, ranging from white to reddish-brown. A bed bug is about 6 mm in size. Bed bugs live in and around the bed. They do not like light. However, they like heat and exhaled air. They are especially active in the evening and at night.
Bedbugs live off the blood of people and pets. When there are many bedbugs in the house, this is called an infestation. You can recognize an infestation of bedbugs by dark or black spots on the seam of the mattress. This is because of the bedbug's poop. Humans do not get diseases from bedbugs.
What are the symptoms of bedbugs?
Small bite marks, such as small red spots or tiny bumps are signs that occur with bed bugs. The bumps can itch for days. The bumps go away on their own after a few weeks and leave no scars.
How can you get bites from bedbugs?
If you sleep somewhere where there are bedbugs, you run the risk of being bitten. They can hide easily, because they are small and flat. They are found in the seams and cracks of beds and mattresses. But also in closets, behind paintings or behind wallpaper. Bed bugs love warmth. They crawl into luggage, clothes and belongings such as a laptop. That is how they travel with you.
Anyone can be bitten by bedbugs. But people that travel a lot are more likely to get bites from bedbugs.
What can you do to prevent bites from bedbugs?
- When traveling always check the beds.
- Look for small dark brown or red spots on the mattress and bedding.
- Do not put suitcases and bags on or under the bed. Preferably put them in the bathroom on the tile floor.
- When buying used items or clothing, check these for bedbugs.
- Also check for bedbugs when buying wooden furniture. The bedbugs can hide within very small cracks in the wood.
Think you brought bedbugs back from holidays?
- Unpack suitcases and bags outside. Once the bedbugs are in the house, it's hard to get rid of them.
- Wash the items from your suitcase directly in the washing machine at 60 degrees or higher.
- If possible dry the laundry in a dryer or iron the laundry as hot as possible.
- Put clothes, bags and other items that cannot be hot washed in a plastic bag.
- Seal the bag and put it in the freezer. The temperature of the freezer should be -14 degrees or colder. Very low temperatures will kill the bedbugs and eggs.
- The items should stay in the freezer for a week. After a week, the bed bugs and eggs are dead.
Can't put items in the freezer either?
Then destroy the items.
Do you still have bedbugs in your house?
Call in a pest control company. Don't start using pesticides yourself. The bed bug may be insensitive to these agents.
Can someone with bedbugs go to school or work?
You can go to school or work. People do not carry bedbugs on their bodies. Bedbugs seek out people to bite and drink blood. This often takes less than 10 minutes. They then hide back in the room.