Once upon a time, bed bugs were only mentioned during that famous children’s nursery rhyme. In fact, many people thought they were fictitious – until these pesky little creatures started invading homes, hotels and hospitals.
Bed bugs are ancient but hardy creatures. They’ve adapted to human environments and now travel the globe, hiding in suitcases, clinging to clothing and hopping on furniture as it’s moved from place to place. They love cracks and crevices and can be found in mattress seams and tufts, sheets, blankets and pillows and behind baseboards, switch plates and picture frames.
Although bed bugs really do bite, it’s usually not painful. Their bites, which don’t transmit any diseases we know of, can leave itchy welts on the skin. People who are allergic to bed bug saliva may have more serious bouts of itching. Since they feed on blood, bed bugs make a mess, leaving dark red blood stains and brown fecal stains on mattresses, linens and even walls. They also give off a distinctively sweet, musty and unpleasant odor.
Bed bugs have flat, oval shaped, wingless bodies ranging from the size of a poppy seed to a quarter inch long. They’re brown in color until after a meal, when the blood they ingest turns them dark red. Because they’re so flat, they can hide in unusual places (even behind the wallpaper), making them difficult to detect.
At home, bed bug infestation usually starts – you guessed it – in and around the bed. They may venture out to the headboard and side tables. They typically come out at night to feed but during the day, they stay within a five-foot radius of the bed.
If you suspect bed bugs, you’ll most likely need professional pest control treatment to get rid of them. Not only are bed bugs hard to get rid of, they multiply quickly so the sooner you take action, the better. A Clark’s technician will do a free inspection and recommend a plan of attack to get rid of bed bugs now and prevent them from hatching in the future.
In the meantime, there are steps you can take to help keep bed bugs at bay.
Bed bugs can show up when you least expect it. Call for a free inspection today!