Active Pest Control

Bed Bug Questions

1. What are bed bugs?

Bed bugs most likely received their name from their habit of feeding on humans while they sleep. These parasites are small, flat, wingless insects that feed exclusively on the blood of humans and animals. Most active at night, bed bugs will bite any area of exposed skin, causing a great deal of distress to individuals who share their homes with this blood feeding pest.

2. What do bed bugs look like?

Adult bed bugs are relatively small, about 5mm long and 3mm wide, broadly oval, flat, and dark brown or reddish in color. Bed bug nymphs are smaller, between 1-4mm and their pale translucent color acts as camouflage against light colored mattresses, sheets and box springs. After feeding, bed bugs will swell, getting wider and turning a dark purple in color.

3. What do bed bugs eat?

Bed bugs are specialized in that they can only eat or consume blood. Bed bugs prefer to feed on human blood and will travel 5-20 feet from established hiding places to feed on a host. These parasites feed every three to four days and feeding takes 3-12 minutes. Adults can survive months without a blood meal, lingering in furniture, suitcases and bags until they are near a host again.

4. Are bed bug bites dangerous?

According to the Centers for Disease Control, bed bug bites are rarely dangerous and do not spread disease. Bed bug bites affect individuals differently, and the social stigma that accompanies an infestation may be more serious than their bite. However, people who are allergic to bed bugs have a bed may develop an allergic reaction after being bitten and may need to seek medical attention.

5. What does a bed bug bite look like?

Bed bug bites most often occur on parts of the body that are most exposed during sleep. Bites may be found on the arms, legs, neck and face, but can occur on any part of the body. Typical symptoms are swollen, itchy red marks or welts. Multiple bites may appear in a linear pattern or cluster and will look similar to mosquito bites.

6. How do you treat bed bug bites?

Individuals react differently to bed bug bites and some people do not react the first time they are bitten, exhibiting a delayed response. Typically, bed bug bites are itchy and mildly irritating, like a mosquito bite. Calamine lotion, aloe vera and toothpaste are natural remedies for bed bug bites. Bites usually heal on their own, but if there is a concern, it is important to seek medical attention.

7. Where do bed bugs live?

Bed bugs tend to live in groups and typically inhabit locations where people sleep or rest for extended periods of time. These parasites can be found in homes, schools, office buildings, retail stores, movie theatres, medical facilities and other areas frequented by the public. Bed bugs have thin bodies and favor cracks, crevices or seams in headboards, mattresses, box springs, bed frames and upholstered furniture.

8. Where do bed bugs hide?

Bed bugs cannot fly or jump and need to be introduced to an environment. Most bed bugs are found in close association with sleeping and resting areas. While beds may be the usual infested area, upholstered furniture such as sofas and chairs where people nap may also become infested. Once introduced, bed bugs may be found anywhere inside a home or other shelter.

9. Who’s at risk of getting bed bugs?

Since their resurgence in the 1990’s, anyone and everyone is at risk of attracting bed bugs when visiting an infested area. Bed bugs will attach themselves to luggage, backpacks and used furniture to gain access to your home. Anyone who visits high risk areas such as hotels, schools, dorms, office buildings and movie theatres are prone to an infestation.

10. How do you get bed bugs?

One of the greatest myths regarding bed bugs is that infestations are caused by poor living conditions, filth and poverty. Bed bugs aren’t attracted to dirt and grime and affect people in all types of housing and all income levels. Bed bugs are attracted to warmth and carbon dioxide, and since bed bugs cannot fly, they will hitch rides on clothing, luggage and second-hand furniture.

11. What are the signs of a bed bug infestation?

Common signs of bed bugs include:

  • Red, itchy bites in clusters or patterns on legs, arms and exposed body parts while sleeping.
  • Blood stains on sheets, pillow cases or upholstery that smear when wetted with a damp cloth.
  • Visualization of live bed bugs.
  • A sweet, musty odor.

12. How do you inspect for bed bugs?

Bites on the skin are a poor indicator of a bed bug infestation, as bites can look similar to other insect bites like mosquitoes. If bed bugs are suspected, use a flashlight and check around beds, bed frames, mattresses and box springs. Inspect bedding for actual live bugs, dark spots, stains on sheets, and egg casings—all indicators of a bed bug infestation.

13. How do you get rid of bed bugs?

Bed bugs can survive temperatures of nearly freezing to 120 degrees. Due to their resilience to extreme temperatures, bed bugs are not a pest that can be treated with DIY measures. At Active Pest Control, our bed bug treatment strategy focuses on exterminating bed bugs utilizing conventional application methods, as well as, bed bug heat treatments that eradicate bed bugs in infested areas.

14. Which bed bug treatment is most effective?

Heat treatment is the most successful method of eliminating all life cycles of bed bugs without utilizing pesticides or chemicals. At Active Pest Control, our bed bug service is developed by industry experts and designed to eradicate bed bugs—not repel them—from one room to another or from one apartment to another. Our bed bug heat treatment eradicates bed bugs, not allowing them to escape.

15. How do I prepare for bed bug treatment?

In order for bed bug treatments to be successful, some preparation is necessary. Preparation involves everything from providing access to your property to cleaning and utilizing post-treatment recommendations. At Active Pest Control pest Solutions’ we understand how stressful and unpleasant it can be when bed bugs have invaded your home, and we will work safely and quickly to eliminate an infestation.

16. How do you prevent bed bugs?

Bed bugs are accomplished hitchhikers and can move from an infested site to your home by hitching a ride on luggage, bedding, furniture, boxes and clothing:

  • Before purchasing, check used furniture or second-hand items, especially mattresses and bedding for any signs of bed bugs.
  • When traveling, do not set luggage down on bed or furniture, until you have inspected bedding, mattresses, curtains and headboard.
  • Use a protective cover that encases mattresses and box springs to eliminate many hiding spots.

Bed Bug FAQ in Georgia

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