Bed Bugs: Your Unlikely Room Mate
Have you ever feel like you were not alone in your room, although there is no one else there beside you? Back to Top of your health online page
Have you ever experienced being alone in your room in the middle of the night, hence, you feel, and you are certain that there are other beings there with you?
You are not about to read another scary story. Or if you think you will be reading perverted things here, no, you are wrong.
You should check on your room, especially your bed. You may have unwanted room mates, or worse bed mates. Do not be scared. The unlikely being referred here is the insect commonly called bed bugs.
What are bed bugs?
Bed bug is one among the millions of species of the insect world. Scientifically, common bed bugs are known as Cimex lectularius.
Experts and professionals claim that the existence of bed bugs had been controlled in the United States in the 70s and 80s. However, due to persistence and survival of bed bugs in Asia, Europe and in Africa, travelers may have carried along the parasites during travel and migration to the country.
Bed bugs are wingless insects. They are parasites that feed primarily on the blood of warm-blooded victims such as animals and human. The belief that bed bugs only bite humans is wrong. Your pets can also be host to the parasite.
Birds, dogs, cats, in short, every mammal that can come into contact with the infested bed or surroundings can be affected by bed bugs.
Bed bugs are so tiny, that one can hardly see it. The biggest bed bugs, however, during their final stage of maturity can reach about 25% of an inch long. Usually, bed bugs are oval-shaped and they appear flattened when viewed from top to bottom.
Bed bugs are usually colored deep brown or cream to white. There are also bed bugs that appear burnt orange in color.
After feeding blood, bed bugs may look like black insects or dark red. That indicates that the bed bug has already stored food inside its body. Once it has fed from its prey, or host, bed bugs usually last until about more than a year before it needs further feeding.
Adult bed bugs can last more than a year without sucking blood. It is different for younger or baby bed bugs. They can last only a few months, or even a few months without food, that is, blood.
Hence, even if a bed infested with bed bugs remains vacant or unoccupied for how many months, chances are the bed bugs still exist there.
Bed bugs on the average life span, needs about three to four replenishments or feeding sessions before it lay eggs and completes its life span.
Bed bugs normally thrive in dark spots or areas in the house. Part of their protective instinct is that they live inside crevices and dark and miniscule holes where they can not easily be detected or killed.
Bed bugs can also live in beds, beneath them, underneath them or inside them. They can remain undetected during daytime. But surely, they go out and hunt for food during night time.
Bed bugs may appear smart because they know when to attack prospective hosts--- when they are asleep.
When bed bugs bite, they normally do not produce stinging sensation. Hence, the victim will only know that he or she has been bitten after a day or two, when the skin reacts to the saliva left by the bed bugs into the affected area.
The bitten skin may itch and appear reddish. Sometimes, it is also hard to distinguish bed bug bites from the usual mosquito bites.
Control of bed bugs
Bed bugs are hard to control. There are a lot of pesticides that can kill the parasite, but it is advisable that you consult a pest control expert to control and exterminate bed bugs.
There a lot of harmful pesticides that can surely kill bed bugs. But the catch is, these pesticides can be really dangerous and harmful, not just to you and your other housemates, but also to your neighbors.
You may not want to exterminate yourself and your loved ones along with bed bugs, right?
Contact the local pest control operators in your locality. If you are renting an apartment, it is the duty of the land lord to arrange for the necessary pest control to get rid of bed bugs.
Bugged By The Bugs
The notoriety of bed bugs show that vampires are not the only popular blood suckers in society. Scientifically known as Cimex lectularius, bed bugs are tiny, brownish flat-like insects that operate mostly during nighttime. During the day bed bugs prefer to situate themselves in areas people normally sleep on. Their small bodies enable them to fit in the narrowest of spaces, especially those related with headboards, box springs and mattresses. Unlike ants or bees, bed bugs do not congregate in a single area.
The problems on bed bugs are even documented in writings about medieval Europe and classical Greek during the time of Aristotle. Bed bugs were already known to feast on wild hosts mainly birds and bats.
Bed bugs were a big problem especially before World War II due to the poor focus on cleanliness and proper hygiene. However, the bugs nearly vanished in the 1940?s and 1950?s because of the widespread use of various pesticides. However, less effective pesticides and reforms in pest control methods enabled these creatures to make a comeback and again become a pest in society.
The Big Bugs
The adult bed bugs are normally mistaken as ticks or cockroaches, as they are approximately ¼ inch in length with flat and hard bodies. These insects can move swiftly in floors, ceiling, walls and other surfaces but cannot fly. The female bed bugs can lay as many as 500 eggs during their lifespan and choose secluded areas to make their move.
When the eggs hatch, the baby bugs or nymphs can fully develop as fast as a month. Cool areas or where there is no access to blood will prolong the development time. The nymphs can live for several months without feasting, while the adults can last for around a year.
People in deep slumber are normally the prime targets of bed bugs. A person who is being bitten may not even notice that he has become dinner for the bed bug, as engorgement normally lasts for around three minutes or even less than a minute. Bite scars result in a red welt or slight swelling of the skin.
People that travel frequently, do not regularly clean their beds or use pre-owned beds should be concerned that they will be eventually attacked. However, bed bugs are not considered a serious disease threat, as there is only a small chance that they can transmit any harmful virus to humans. Those that want to prevent complications from bed bug bites should spread antibiotic cream or antiseptic to the infected area of the body.
In addition, it is best not to scratch the infected area. Similar to mosquito bites, scratching only makes the infection worse.
Control ?em bugs
The proliferation of bed bugs has been a problem for many centuries. The length of time they have been causing headaches indicate that the perfect way control them has yet to be developed. It is wise for a person with a bed bug issue to hire a professional pest control group to help solve his dilemma.
Those with a long experience in the pest industry should know where bed bugs settle. To assist the pest solvers, clients should at least clean their surroundings from excess clutter. The inspectors could be forced to look in nearby rooms, as bed bugs have the ability to disperse in different areas of a building.
Dispose the bed
The bed is normally the main breeding ground of bugs. If a bed has holes and tears it is likely that these contain eggs inside or out. Pest control companies normally advise their clients to dispose the beds that are heavily infested or in poor shape.
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Bed bugs do not choose what type of bed they will settle, as they put more importance on the warm blooded person occupying it for an extended period of time. Bed bugs can even settle in sleeping bags, egg foam, or even stacks cardboard on the floor. Any place where people sleep is always the perfect area for bed bugs to roam. Water beds are also included, as these have nooks and crannies and are often warm, which is the preferred temperature of these insects.
Despite various alternatives to control bed bugs, it is safe to say they are here to stay. Possibly, the best way not to become a bed bug victim is by putting a premium on good hygiene and cleanliness.