Detecting the Early Signs of Bed Bugs

looking for bed bugs

Detecting the early signs of bed bugs can help you eliminate them faster.  It only takes between three to 12 minutes for a bed bug to feed and they normally feed at night. So although it’s unlikely that you’ll catch a bed bug as they’re feeding, you’ll likely notice a few bites as soon as your home is infested. Looking out for bed bug bites, stains, and skins is the easiest way to detect a bed bug infestation in its earliest stage.  

A female bed bug produces hundreds of eggs during her lifetime. Before she can lay eggs, the female bed bug must feed. Immature bed bugs, or nymphs, go through several rounds of shedding their skin before they mature into adults. Before shedding their skins, nymphs also need to feed. Within the first month of an infestation, bug bugs may have already produced three or more generations.   

Also Read: What’s The Difference Between Bed Bug vs Mosquito Bite

a mattress highly infested with bed bugs

Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?

You’re not dirty or gross if you have a bed bug infestation. In fact, bed bugs are one of the most common infestations exterminators service. You could have contracted bed bugs from a number of places, including hospitals. It’s more likely you contracted bed bugs from a hotel, an Airbnb, or from used furniture (even wood furniture can carry bed bugs!), what’s important is to inspect as soon as you suspect. 

Go through your luggage, clothing, sheets, and mattress to look for bed bugs. Bed bugs don’t fly and normally stay within six feet of wherever they’re feeding. Bed bugs will have a:  

  • Flat, oval shape
  • Reddish, brown body
  • Six legs
  • Two antennae
  • Short, golden body hair

Bed bugs live solely off of blood. It won’t matter how “clean” a place is if someone is sleeping in that space. 

Also Read: How To Avoid Bed Bugs in Your Hotel

Signs of a Bed Bug Infestation

You likely won’t feel bed bugs when you sleep, but you will notice their itchy bites as soon as you wake up. Check your mattress during the day for signs of bed bugs. Other common signs of bed bugs include:

  • Brown or black stains on sheets, pillow cases, and mattresses
  • Bites in lines or patterns
  • Bloodstains on pajamas and sheets
  • Skins and shells around beds
  • A sweet musty odor in the bedroom

If you suspect you have an infestation, remove all your bedding and look for bed bugs, shells, bloodstains, or other blackish-brown stains (feces). Check your sheets, pillowcases, pajamas, mattress, and box spring for signs of bed bugs. Carefully comb through your mattress seams with a credit card for bed bug activity. 

bed bugs hiding in lampshades and furniture linings

Also Read: Unexpected Places Bed Bugs Can Hide

How To Get Rid of Bed Bugs Immediately

The fastest way to kill bed bugs is to start cleaning all bedrooms as soon as you notice the early signs. Clean all bedding, curtains, rugs, toys, and clothing in hot water and on the highest setting in the dryer. Throw pillows into the dryer in the hottest setting. 

Bed bugs die at around 113°F (45°C). Using heat to treat bed bugs is the most effective way to get rid of them fast. 

Vacuum all bedrooms regularly and throw out all remains right away. Use the brush feature on your vacuum to clean your mattress and box spring. Finally, dismantle your bed frame and clean it with an alcohol spray. Anything that can’t be washed in hot water can be sprayed down with alcohol. Be sure to seal up any cracks in your bed frame with silicone caulk. 

Bed bugs can hide in some of the most unexpected places. Check behind surrounding furniture and inside dresser drawers for more signs of bed bugs, then clean thoroughly. 

Also Read: Exterminator Costs To Treat Bed Bugs    

Preventing Bed Bugs From Multiplying

Prevention is the key to early bed bug detection and eliminating them immediately. Start by getting a protective mattress cover with a zipper. This way, bed bugs can’t come in or out of your mattress. Put bed bug catchers on the bottom of your bed frame and sprinkle with diatomaceous earth. These catchers will show you how active your beds still are.  

Continue to vacuum regularly and keep your eye out for the common signs of bed bugs on your sheets. If you still see bed bugs after a month, it’s time to call an exterminator. 

To contact a bed bug exterminator in your area, call Pest Brigade. We can connect you with a top-rated exterminator near you in one click.