Managing a bed bug infestation is a difficult task that requires removal or treatment of all infested material and follow-up monitoring to ensure the infestation has been eliminated and does not return. Management will require employing several nonchemical methods such as vacuuming, washing bedding at a high temperature, using steam or heat treatment, and sealing up hiding places.
Insecticides may be required to eliminate serious infestations; however few active ingredients are federally registered for bed bugs for over-the-counter use. At the professional control level, there are more registered products; however, resistance among bed bug populations is common, and low-level infestations are difficult to detect. There has been some success combining chemical and nonchemical products with increased sanitation and habitat modification.
Bed bugs are wingless and have a reddish-brown type color. They are oval shaped and they become swollen after a blood meal. Bed bugs are thin which mean they often hide in narrow cracks and crevices. They run rapidly.
About 3/16-inch long.
Bed bugs feed on blood, their mouthparts are shaped and made to pierce skin. Bed bugs inject saliva during feeding. They respond to carbon dioxide and warmth of their host of a host. They mostly feed at night and seek shelter during daytime. Despite this bed bugs will bite in the day especially if they have been starved. They are capable of surviving long periods of time without feeding. Bed bugs prefer humans but they will feed on a variety of other warm-blooded animals which include rodents, bats, rabbits, and birds.
Bed bugs seek shelter in dark locations and these locations are usually close to where people sleep. Cracks and crevices like mattress seams, floorboards, sheets ,behind wall paintings or pictures, in carpets, behind skirting, inside of bed frames, furniture, and even behind loose wallpaper. Bed bugs are most popular for seeking shelter at hotels. They can move from room to room clinging onto transported luggage. Blood spotting is a sign that there may be a bed bug infestation.
Bed bugs have might play a role in the spreading of Hepatitis B but experimental evidence has not yet supported this accusation. Bed bug bites transform into itchy welts on skin. The welts can often cause allergic reactions.