BED BUGS WOULD NOT LET US SLEEP TIGHT
Bed bugs have long been pests of the bedroom; they do not cause nightmares when you sleep, but these insects are the nightmares. It feeds during the night, just when we are sleeping. Bed bugs feed solely on the blood of their hosts. Their bites are very itchy and leave ugly marks on our skin that screams to the world that our house has bed bugs. Quite embarrassing indeed!
Even though bed bugs do not transmit diseases, some United States government agencies like the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Environment Protection Agency, and the Center for Disease Control consider them high health risks.
It is believed that the modern way of life has contributed to the spread of bed bugs in the United States. Travel has become easier and cheaper. More and more Americans travel for vacation or for work. They stay in 5-star hotels or in the cheaper ones, but it would not matter. Bed bugs are not choosy on which hotels to stay; whether it is clean or dirty as long as there are hosts to feed on, they are there. Here in the hotels Americans stay and catch the bed bugs through their clothes or suitcases. When they return to the United States, they have bed bugs with them.
Identifying bed bugs
Bed bugs are tiny insects, about the size of an Appleseed, or 5 to 7 mm long and are brown in color. They have flat, oval-shaped bodies. They bloat after a blood meal however and turn red. They produce a musty sweet odor coming from glands found at the lower side of their bodies. Their bodies have three segments, and with antenna attached to their heads. They have wings but are not used for flying.
Signs to look out for to know if you have bed bugs
When it comes to bed bugs, early detection is very critical. Time is not on our side once a couple of bed bugs are in the house already. Once they multiply, it would be very hard to stop them. It is cheaper and easier to get rid of them when you discover them early on.
Bed bug bite marks are not accurate indicators, because it takes several days before these marks appear on the skin. By that time, bed bugs would have spread.
Below are some of the more accurate signs that give away the presence of bed bugs in your home:
- Red stains on your mattresses caused by the bed bugs being crushed by you.
- Sweet, musty smell coming from the bed bugs.
- Dark spots on your mattress which actually bed bug feces.
- Seeing actual bed bugs as described above.
The places to look for bed bugs include the seams of your mattresses, chairs, couches, and cushions. You should also look for them in the folds of your curtains, electrical receptacles, appliances, in the cracks of the bed frame, and the headboard.
They are health risks to us humans
Even though they are not capable of transmitting diseases the way other pests like mosquitoes, mice, rats, and cockroaches would, bed bugs are considered high health risks. The Center for Disease Control has considered them a major problem here in the United States.
Aside from the physical torment inflicted by bed bugs, they cause a lot of psychological torment too.
What are some of the non-physical damage bed bugs can cause? Here are some of them:
This is a sleep disorder that can be caused by a myriad of reasons. Many people whose house is infested with bed bugs suffer from insomnia. Knowing that they have bed bugs on their own bed is definitely going to make one lose sleep. Even when insomniacs get to sleep, it would not be for long and get awake easily.
People with insomnia find it very hard to fall asleep; they easily get awake in the middle of the night and not being able to go back to sleep; they feel fatigued and irritated throughout the day thus affecting their productivity. This may also lead to depression if not checked. If the cause of a person’s insomnia is the presence of bed bugs, then the obvious treatment is to get rid of the bed bugs. Other ways to treat insomnia include relaxation training. Over-the-counter and prescription sleep aids can also help induce sleep. Behavioral therapy with a psychologist or a psychiatrist who have specialized training may help.
Stress is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a physical, mental, chemical, or emotional factor that causes bodily or mental factor in disease causation.” Bed bugs, which can cause insomnia, may most probably lead to stress. Imagine having to prepare for a busy day ahead without being able to sleep. That would be stressful indeed.
Signs and symptoms of stress are headaches, sleeplessness, irritability, neck ache, backache, cold and sweaty hands or feet, constipation, diarrhea, either feeling of wanting to eat more or loss of diet, frequent urination, diminished sexual desire, anxiety, and depression.
On extreme cases, bed bugs also caused depression to many people. Depression is a serious medical condition, one that needs professional care and is characterized by feelings of extreme sadness and loneliness.
There are many signs and symptoms of depression. A person with depression can feel extreme sadness, extreme unhappiness, irritability, frustration, disappointment, and loss of self-confidence. They withdraw even from close family and friends. They do not go anywhere outside their rooms. They neglect to take a bath. They sleep all day and do not get anything done. They look tired the whole day. They also either gain weight or lose weight, depending on the eating habits they acquire during the depression. The worst thing about depression is a lot of cases end up in suicide for the patient.
Another side effect of having bed bugs is social isolation. Kids stay away from other kids who apparently have bed bugs.
How do we get bed bugs?
Bed bugs are very good hitchhikers. They hitch a ride on your luggage carried by people as they travel. Or they latch onto our clothes, used sofas, used beds or bed frames, and other used items. Their bodies are so slim that they fit into small spaces in our houses and can stay there for a very long time. Frequent travelers who sleep in many different hotels or sleeping quarters might chance upon an infested area, where they could pick up some bed bugs and carry them back home.
Getting rid of bed bugs
Bed bugs should be detected easily, lest they multiply in your home and that would make life much more difficult for you. Here are some ways to get rid of them:
- Try using a vacuum cleaner and vacuum the mattresses, sofas, chairs, beds, and anywhere you see or think the bed bugs may be hiding. Afterward, seal the bag and throw it outside the house. This will ensure that the bed bugs that got caught in the bag would not be able to return.
- If you live in an apartment with several units, inform your landlord. They should call the professional pest control experts. Bed bugs spread quickly, and it is possible that the other apartment units might have bed bugs too. This would need a large-scale control system to get rid of the bed bugs.
- Wash your bedding in hot, soapy water. This will kill the bed bugs. After washing, dry it using a dryer and place it on its maximum setting. Do this for 30 minutes.
- If your bedding has bed bugs, put it in the freezer The temperature must be 0 degrees. Leave the item there for 4 days. Freezing the bed bugs also kills them.
- You may also want to buy bed bug proof mattress encasements. These are fabric sacks in which you can slide your mattress or even your box springs into. This will protect you from bed bug bites as they would not be able to pass through it. These encasements are also too smooth on the outside for the bed bugs to latch on to.
If you the bed bugs have spread enough to make it hard for you to get rid of them, then it is time to call in the best pest control management in North Carolina.
Go-Forth is simply the best
Go-Forth Pest Control is a family owned commercial service solutions provider of modern pest control services and techniques, using the latest and most advanced technology in the business, making our service to you more efficient, safer and more convenient. We have a team of expert professionals who can provide the best pest control services to residents and business establishments all throughout North and South Carolina. You may check us on Facebook or Google us to see what our satisfied customers have to say about us.
Go-Forth Pest Control has earned the trust of residents and businesses in North Carolina for more than 50 years. For more information, or to set an appointment, just dial 336-841-6111. Our friendly operators are standing by.