Why Bed Bugs Appear in the House: Causes and Methods of Control

Bed bugs are small, blood-sucking insects that live in furniture, closet drawers, baseboards, and bedding. They are dangerous to humans – their bites cause allergies, itching, and redness, but they are quite hardy – they can easily survive temperatures of -17°C.

What are the dangers of bedbug bites – important information

These insects are active only at night – during the day they prefer to sleep. However, bed bugs are not as active as ticks, for example. But scientists say that from November to March they are particularly aggressive.

The bedbug feeds on blood and can travel long distances to find its prey. Finding a person, the insect chooses an exposed area of the body, pierces the skin with its proboscis, and sucks on a blood vessel. During its meal, the bug drinks about 7 ml of blood, which doubles its size and changes its color from translucent to scarlet or black.

Bed bug bites are uncomfortable and dangerous – in addition to itching and redness, regular contact with insects can cause allergic reactions and weaken the immune system. To all this, bed bugs also leave excrement on human skin. So when you scratch the wound, you bring the infection into it, which can begin the process of festering.

Why are bed bugs in the house – the main reasons

Specialists in disinfecting rooms from insects say that you can get such an unpleasant neighborhood for several reasons:

  • The presence of old furniture – often the insects settle there, and if you buy sofas or poufs at a flea market, you risk “bringing” a bedbug from there into the house;
  • Secondhand clothes – despite cleaning these items, the seams may contain bed bug larvae or immature specimens that do not disappear after washing;
  • Travel or business trips – you can easily bring at least one bedbug with you from a vacation or business trip and that will be enough;
  • Pets – if you have a cat or dog that walks outside, they can be a kind of “cab” for bed bugs from the street to your apartment.

You won’t be able to tell right away that you have bed bugs in your home – the shell of hungry insects is translucent in color. However, these individuals keep in groups, so if you find nests, you will see clutches of larvae or adult insects there. In addition, if you crush the pest, brown stains will be left on the bed, and the characteristic smell of old brandy will convince you of the presence of the pest in the house.

If you want to know how to find bed bugs in the bed and not only, first of all, check the corners and joints between the walls, furniture upholstery, folds of sofas and beds, as well as mattresses. The easiest way is to turn off the light for a while before you go to bed and then turn it on quickly so that the bed bugs won’t have time to get out.

How to get rid of bed bugs in the couch and furniture – instructions

Going into the fight against bed bugs, many people use store remedies – effective preparations with a chemical composition, which help get rid of bed bugs quickly. In addition to them, there are also folk remedies, which were successfully used by our grandmothers:

  • table vinegar – soak a rag and wipe all surfaces in the apartment;
  • Rosemary, thyme, wormwood, and valerian – spread dry herbs around the house or set fire in a deep bowl for a while, fumigating the room;
  • lavender and eucalyptus – pour essential oils into an aroma lamp and leave for several hours in the house;
  • gasoline, kerosene, turpentine – spray the room with the remedy, close windows, and doors, and move to another place for some time;
  • low temperature – in winter take mattresses, pillows, and bedding out in the cold and air the house regularly;
  • high temperature – treat furniture and bedclothes with steam (for example, with an iron) and wash things at temperatures above 60°C.

Despite the effectiveness of various preparations against bed bugs, disinfection is still considered the most effective method of getting rid of them. Disinfestation is used in the worst cases when there are so many bugs that you can’t drive them away by yourself, in which case you have to call in specialists.

What are bed bugs afraid of in the apartment – prevention

It is always easier to prevent the situation than to solve it:

  • Give your mattress to a dry cleaner 2-3 times a year;
  • Do dry and wet cleaning daily;
  • avoid clutter – insects hide in old things and dust;
  • Use mattress covers – through them it will be difficult for the insects to get to you, even if they appear.

Don’t be lazy to treat with detergents and personally check even the hardest-to-reach places in the apartment, because if bed bugs choose to live in your home, they will avoid places where they are uncomfortable, but will settle in corners that you missed.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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