Bed bugs

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Bed bugs

Bed bugs are a significant problem in India and around the world. They are easily spread and difficult to treat resulting in a rapid growth in the number of bed bug outbreaks. The key to beating this problem is to raise awareness of what to look for and to ensure bed bugs are dealt with quickly once discovered.

Impact of bed bugs

Bed bugs feed on the blood of humans and other mammals. While it is possible for bedbugs to transmit disease, in India it is very rare. Instead, the primary concern is the irritation and distress caused by bed bug bites.

Bed bug bites do not hurt. It is the itchiness that results from the body’s reaction to them that causes discomfort. Treating the bites soothes the irritation, but it can still be very distressing when there are multiple bites as is often the case with bedbugs. Multiple bites and contact with bedbugs can also lead to an itchy rash or eczema. Consult a pharmacist for advice and treatment if this occurs.

Identifying bed bugs

Adult Bed bugs are 5mm long. Before feeding they are a flattened oval shape and light brown, but become rounder and darker after feeding.
They come out at night and are attracted to the warmth of our bodies and carbon dioxide in our breath. They are usually found in bedrooms and hide in cracks and crevices during the daytime.

The most common shelter of Bed bugs is in the seams of mattresses, in crevices in the bed frame, behind furniture surrounding the bed (especially the headboard) or where the wall meets the floor. A more established infestation is associated with dark or black staining of the mattress from Bed bug excreta. An established infestation will also be associated with an unpleasant scent secreted by bed bugs.

Sources of bed bugs infestation

Bed bugs usually enter a property by being carried on clothing or inside furniture. The most common places for Bed bug infestations are hotels, cinemas, lodges, auditoriums, and overnight buses.

Bed bugs often get introduced into homes with second-hand furniture. Bed bugs or their eggs get into clothing or suitcases and are then transported home. If there are any signs of Bed bugs when staying at a hotel, particularly being bitten when sleeping or seeing blood spots on sheets, take great care in bringing your personal belongings home. Consult with hotel management to assess the risk - it may be necessary to launder, fumigate or treat clothes to ensure they are safe. The same applies in transferring furniture. Rentokil can treat furniture for Bed bugs before bringing it into your home if there may be a risk.

Bed bug bites

Bed bug bites are unlikely to wake the victim. They can occur anywhere on the body but are often close to blood vessels near the skin. A single Bed bug may bite more than once around the same area. However, bites in different parts of the body indicate being bitten by several Bed bugs. Early in a bed bug infestation, the victim may not yet be sensitised to the bites and they may not feel itchy. However, small droplets of blood on the sheets will indicate the presence of bed bugs.

Identifying bed bug bites

It is difficult to identify Bed bugs from their bite because our bodies react very differently to them. It is more important to look at the overall pattern and timing of bites and other factors to identify whether bites are caused by Bed bugs. The description below will help you identify if you have a Bed bug problem. Consult our guide to biting insects for advice about how to treat Bed bug bites.

Treating bed bug infestation

Bed bugs are an objectionable pest and one of the most difficult to eradicate. High levels of hygiene, deep cleaning and the use of amateur insecticides will help to keep Bed bug numbers under control. However, professional treatment will be required to eradicate the infestation.

Rentokil PCI offers a call-out service to deal with Bed bugs and other pest problems in the home. Our service is fast, effective and offers the highest level of safety for your family and pets.

If you are concerned that you may have a bedbug problem and would like to arrange a visit from a Rentokil PCI technician, call us free on 1800 212 212 5.

Take care not to spread bed bugs

If your home has a Bed bug infestation, please do not risk spreading it by taking clothes, suitcases or furniture to hotels or the homes of your friends and families. Bed bugs can also migrate to adjoining properties through wall or floor cavities. If your home has Bed bugs and you live in a flat or a terraced property, please be considerate to your neighbours and act promptly.

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