What Are Bed Bugs?
The bed bug is an insect that does its best to stay out of sight, emerging at night, usually right before dawn, to use their specialized mouthparts to feed on the blood of their sleeping food source. Unfortunately, human blood is the bed bug’s favorite food; they prefer to feed on our blood over other hosts, including our pets.
Adult bed bugs are small but not so little that we can’t see them if we look close. Adults grow to about 1/4 of an inch in length, and before feeding are reddish-brown. Their bodies are flattened from top to bottom, which allows them to squeeze their bodies into tight hiding spots. Bed bugs have well-developed antennae and six legs. These insects do not jump or fly. After feeding their appearance changes, their body swells and expands like a balloon or capsule.
During her lifespan, a single female bed bug can lay about 350 eggs. These pests are prolific breeders, and once inside of a South Florida home or business, these pests require professional services to eliminate them. If bed bugs ever find their way into your residential or commercial property, contact Native Pest Management for help.
Are Bed Bugs Dangerous?
Unlike other pests that feed on the blood of people, the spread of disease by bed bugs is currently not a significant threat. However, bed bugs can cause a lot of problems for people and damage our property. As bed bugs feed, they leave behind droplets of blood and dark streaks of excrement that stain bedding, pillowcases, mattresses, walls, floors, and clothing.
Reactions to bed bug bites vary from no reaction at all to severe allergic reactions. People allergic to their saliva will develop itchy rashes. Excessive itching may lead to secondary infections that require medical attention. The presence of bed bugs in your home is unnerving and leads to sleepless nights followed by days filled with worry.
Why Do I Have A Bed Bug Problem?
Bed bugs are indoor pests. Our temperature-controlled homes and businesses allow them to remain active year-round. Bed bug populations do vary throughout the year, but populations tend to explode and are more of a concern in South Florida during tourist season. Large groups of people coming and going from our area allow bed bugs to move from place to place with great ease.
Homes, airports, office buildings, shopping centers, hospitals, libraries, and movie theaters all house bed bugs and allow people to come into contact with them unknowingly. Hotels, resorts, motels, and other rentals are also hot spots for bed bugs.
A bed bug problem can happen anywhere and to anyone. They do not care where they are living, just that there are people. You will just as easily find bed bugs in five-star resorts as your local mom and pop motel. Bed bugs aren’t attracted to filth. But, if they have hitchhiked their way into a home with lots of clutter, they will be able to hide unseen for an extended period.
Where Will I Find Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs move inside of our homes on people, our belongings, or on used items like furniture, mattresses, box springs, and electronics. After finding their way inside, they first move to our sleeping areas to be near food sources. Inside of our bedrooms, bed bugs hide in the seams of mattresses or box springs, in cracks in wooden furniture, and behind wall hangings.
As the bed bug infestation grows and they feel more comfortable in your home, they will begin to travel and hide in a multitude of areas, including upholstered furniture, spaces behind baseboards, wood trim, and electrical outlets. Bed bugs can move through walls and floors, making them difficult to control in multi-unit buildings like hotels and apartment buildings.
If you have bed bugs living in your home, you may notice some of the following signs:
Small stains of blood on sheets, pillowcases, and mattresses
A sweet, musty odor developing in your home
Waking up with unexplained bug bites
Dark streaks of excrement or piles of their shed skins in their hiding spots
How Do I Get Rid Of Bed Bugs?
At Native Pest Management, we understand how stressful dealing with bed bugs can be. Bed bugs are difficult to get rid of, hide in many spots, and leaving one untreated bed bug can lead to a re-infestation. To treat bed bugs, we offer conventional treatments and a 14-day follow-up that includes inspection and treatment, if needed. This service also includes a 60-day warranty that begins after the initial treatment.
If you find bed bugs or any other pests in your home, contact Native Pest Management. We would be happy to help you rid your home of bed bugs and prevent their return. Call today to learn more about our effective bed bug control services!
How Can I Prevent Bed Bugs In The Future?
Help to stop biting bed bugs from finding their way into your South Florida homes with the help of the following prevention tips:
Make sure to keep luggage up off of the floor of airports and other public places when you and your family are traveling.
Keep coats and other personal belongings away from other people’s belongings at work, school, in restaurants, at the movies, or while in any other public place.
When traveling, inspect your hotel room for bed bugs before bringing luggage inside.
Keep your luggage, bags, and coats up off of the floor of the hotel room.
After returning home, immediately wash and dry all clothing you took with you.
Before storing away your suitcase for your next trip, thoroughly vacuum and wipe it down.
Vacuum your home, paying attention to areas around baseboards and upholstered furniture.
Wash bedding regularly and inspect mattresses and box springs for bed bugs while doing so.
Place bed bug-proof covers on mattresses and box springs to reduce hiding spots for bed bugs.
Do not purchase used furniture, mattresses, or box springs for use in your home.
Wash and dry newly purchased clothing after bringing the items home. Use the highest temperature on your wash and dry cycle the fabrics can handle.