Bed Bug Facts: Dispelling Common Myths

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Bed bugs were almost eliminated after World War II, but they’re making a comeback — a big comeback that is affecting regions across the US. For that reason it’s important to arm yourself with bed bug facts so you are properly prepared and know what to expect when encountering them.

Bed bugs are now found in epidemic levels in every State, including Arizona. The problem? They’re tricky little pests that can set up residence in your house and live for weeks (or even months) without detection. When you do find them, you understandably want them gone — and fast. These facts on bed bugs will help you better understand how to deal them.

The first line of defense in your fight against bed bugs is understanding how they live and feed, but there’s so much information out there that it’s difficult to break down what’s true and what’s not.

Not anymore! Let’s break down the most common myths — and get the real facts about those unwanted house guests.

Myth 1: You Only Get Bed Bugs If Your Home is Dirty

Fact: Bed bugs like warmth, blood and carbon dioxide, not dirt. They’re known as “hitchhikers” because they’ll latch onto anything — furniture, luggage, clothing, boxes — to make their way into your house.

That said, it’s easier for bed bugs to stay concealed in cluttered conditions, so keep your home as clean as possible to take away their secret hiding spots.

Myth 2: Bed Bugs Spread Disease

Fact: There are no cases of disease caused by bed bugs, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. That said, bed bug bites can irritate some people, leading to scratching and secondary infections.

Myth 3: Bed Bugs Don’t Come Out in the Light

Fact: Bed bugs do prefer the dark, but they’ll bite in the light, too.

Myth 4: Bed Bugs Only Live On Beds

Fact: They might be called bed bugs, but these little insects can infect any furniture that people lounge on, including recliners, couches, chairs and futons.

“Bed bugs were almost eliminated after World War II, but they’re making a comeback — a big comeback that is affecting regions across the US.”

How to Avoid Bringing Bed Bugs Home

Bed bugs are everywhere, meaning that you’ve likely met with bed bugs without realizing it. They tend to make their way into your home via secondhand clothing and furniture, or in your suitcase after you stay at a hotel. To keep that from happening, always:

  • Wash any secondhand clothing or bedding you receive before bringing them inside.
  • Thoroughly check used furniture and beds — and avoid used mattresses, if possible.
  • Check your hotel mattress and headboard for bed bugs before opening your luggage or sleeping in the room.
  • Inspect luggage for bed bugs before coming home.
  • Thoroughly wash all the clothes in your luggage (in hot water) and dry them in a hot dryer immediately after returning home.

What are the Signs of Bed Bugs?

There are two things bed bugs are good at: Multiplying and hiding.

Awareness and proper inspection can assist you in detecting a bed bug infestation when it is small. But, how can you tell you have them? Usually, the first sign are bites that mysteriously show up overnight on uncovered parts of the body, like the arms, neck, face and legs. Unfortunately, many people mistake those for other insect bites, like mosquitoes or spiders.

Other tell-tale signs of a bed bug infestation include:

  • Finding live bugs (about the size of an apple seed) in the seams of your mattress. If no live bugs, look for bed bug eggs, egg shells and skins in the same areas.
  • Small dark spots (from their excrement).
  • Rust-colored stains on your mattress, sheets and box spring that come from crushed bugs

What to Do If You Find Bed Bugs in Your Home

Bed bugs are not only sneaky, they’re resilient, too. Most of the at-home treatments that claim to get rid of bed bugs don’t work — or they don’t get all the bugs, so they repopulate.

The best way to eliminate your unwanted guests is to get help from the pros. Pest control experts are well-versed in the latest bed bug treatments that target bed bugs where they live and eliminate them for good.

You’ll have to help, too. Blue Sky Pest Control thorough treatment process includes pre-treatment steps you must complete before treatment to ensure success. Get all the details — and schedule your bed bug inspection — by calling (480) 635-8492.

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