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Bed bugs are tiny insects that often cause a lot of psychological distress. There was a time, just a few decades ago, when these blood-sucking insects were nearly wiped out as a pest. However, in recent years, bed bugs are back. Even in the biggest cities, they infest bedrooms, homes, living rooms, and businesses of all kinds. Although bed bugs feed on blood, they are not known to transmit disease. Unfortunately, that doesn’t stop those who find themselves in the middle of a bed bug infestation from freaking out.
Ehrlich Pest Control has been at the forefront of finding new and more effective methods for getting rid of bed bugs entirely. Our Bed Bug Control program, featuring the PROTECT+ System, is an integrated approach that uses a proprietary mix of targeted service protocols, precise applications, and specialized residual products to eliminate bed bugs from your home and provide ongoing control.
Ehrlich bed bug control specialists have plenty of experience with bed bugs, making them a good resource for deciphering what bed bug myths are real and which are just imagination.
If you have a bed bug infestation at your home or business, contact your local Ehrlich Pest Control office. In this article, we look at the most common bed bug myths we hear.
You hear this a lot and there is a very small kernel of truth at its core. The kernel is that bed bugs are indeed small. In their early stages, bed bugs are about the size of a pinhead and eggs are nearly translucent, but the adult bed bugs are about the same size and shape as an apple seed. If you can see an apple seed with the naked eye, you can spot a bed bug.
The real truth is that bed bugs are great at hiding; so it’s this trait that makes them so hard to find.
Your house may or may not actually be messy, but bed bugs are not the kind of pest that look for a specific level of filth in order to set up shop. Bed bugs do not require dirt or clutter and do not flourish in messy houses like cockroaches or rodents. Bed bugs seek out harborage where they have easy access to a blood meal. If you have a bed bug infestation, this does not mean you have an unsanitary home or business. It just means you need to contact professionals to get rid of the pests as soon as possible.
Their name is “bed” bugs, so you probably assume you’ll only find a cluster of bed bugs in the sheets. Yes, bed bugs are most frequently found in beds, but that’s because they prefer to seek shelter as close to their food source as possible. They will emerge from this hiding spot to feed when their intended victim is quiet and sedentary, which is most often at night. However, bed bugs are not limited to beds alone.
Living rooms, or any other room, where people can be found sleeping or resting can become easily infested as well. People resting on a sofa or easy chair can provide an excellent opportunity for a blood meal, too. In fact, just spend a little time on YouTube and you’ll see videos of bed bugs in movie theater seats or on subway cars. They aren’t very picky. You won’t see them looking for high thread counts or turn-down service.
If you check out number 3, you can see where this is going. Bed bugs prefer to feed undisturbed. People who are active during the day do not make a good meal. Bed bugs will actively search for a suitable place to feed and can crawl on the victim to find the right spot for them to pierce flesh and access a blood vessel. Since this process can take some time, bed bugs prefer to seek a host at night when the victim is most likely in a deep state of sleep and they can remain undetected.
However, just because you work the night shift, doesn’t mean your home is safe from bed bugs. The insects are more than willing to adjust their feeding schedule if their meal source happens to sleep during the day.
Because bed bugs feed on blood, there’s a common misconception they can transmit disease just like mosquitoes and ticks. This partially stems from the belief mosquitoes and ticks can inject blood from other victims into new victims, but that’s not how it works. In fact, a mosquito acquires the malaria parasite from feeding on someone who has the virus. When the mosquito bites a new host and injects its saliva, which contains the virus, the disease can be transmitted.
Bed bugs behave and feed differently, and have an entirely different physiology than mosquitoes and ticks. Thus, bed bugs are not known to transmit any diseases like other blood-sucking pests. The biggest problem they inflict upon people is psychological in nature. Being feasted upon at night is something that disturbs most people and can cause loss of sleep.
All that being said, scratching bed bug bites does increase the possibility of introducing bacteria from dirty fingernails into the wound.
If you find bed bug bites or see the other signs of bed bugs, then you should not risk waiting before contacting your local Ehrlich Pest Control office. Only trained professionals know all of the places to look for bed bugs and offer solutions to get rid of bed bugs, larvae and eggs. If you contact us, we will discuss treatment and prevention options to keep your life bed bug-free.