Are you sharing the bed with unwanted guests unknowingly? Some pests such as bed bugs are notoriously hard to detect until signs of an infestation occur. In this article, Bingo Pest shares the common causes of bed bugs, tips for bed bug prevention and how you can quickly get rid of a bed bug infestation.
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What are bed bugs?
Bed bugs are reddish-brown oval-shaped insects that feed on blood in order to breed. Adult bed bugs have a flat body, about the size of an apple seed. Being small in nature allows these blood-sucking creatures to fit in tiny spaces, gaps and cracks. This can possibly contribute to the difficulty in treating a bed bug infestation.
After each nutritious blood meal, the female bed bug can lay up to seven eggs per day, for about ten days. After which, they are required to feed again. These pests reproduce quickly with bed bug eggs hatching within seven days and turning into an adult in as little as three weeks.
Common causes of bed bugs
Unlike certain pests such as cockroaches or rodents, a bed bug infestation does not occur due to unsanitary or filthy environments. In fact, they can happen anywhere, even in a clean and tidy house.
Bed bugs are hitchhikers and an infestation is possibly caused by cross-infestation undetected. Generally, for bed bug problems to happen, someone may have had interactions in a place that bed bugs have already infested. These tiny creatures can latch on, attach to a host, and spread without you knowing. An infestation happens when they reach your home and begin feeding on blood meals.
Lounging in shared spaces increases the chances of bed bug infestations
Since bed bugs require blood to survive and reproduce, they commonly happen in places where people lounge. Furthermore, bed bugs prefer fabric surfaces to metallic ones. Therefore, key hotspots where cross-infestation might occur include sofas in a lobby or reception area, cinema and even restaurant chairs.
Regular travellers are at risk of bringing bed bugs home
Frequent travel is one of the primary and most common reasons for a bed bug infestation. Besides public transport, other means of transport including aeroplanes and cruises can also contribute towards a cross-infestation. Seats on these forms of transportation as well as hotel beds, are key areas where you may bring bed bugs home. Furthermore, with the opening up of borders after COVID-19 and people started travelling, it is without a doubt that you can bring back the bed bug pest through your luggage.
Used furniture escalates bed bug cross-infestation
Second-hand or used furniture is common and popular these days. This is because most of them are affordable and available readily through online platforms such as Carousell or Facebook communities and groups. However, when bringing a piece of pre-owned furniture home, you may also risk bringing back bed bugs which are harbouring and breeding in them.
In addition, bed bugs do not only breed in beds or mattresses. Most pieces of furniture or fixtures including sofas, carpets and dining tables can also encourage bed bug activities. They provide the perfect hiding place such as tight gaps, cracks, crevices and voids without getting the bloodsucking insects exposed.
Guests, visitors and family members can bring bed bugs to your home
Although you should not be worried about having guests at home, it is important to know that your friends or visiting family members can accidentally expose you to bed bugs. People can actually spread bed bugs to others without even realising it. Bed bugs can latch onto the clothes or personal belongings of your guests and enter your home when they visit. In a short timeframe, bed bugs can leave their host and be transferred to your home, to start a dreadful infestation.
Signs of bed bugs
Although bed bugs are tiny and can be hard to spot, there are several telltale signs of a bed bug infestation, besides seeing physical bed bugs around. Here are some things to take note of to determine if an infestation exists:
If you wake up with itchy bites, it is probably the most obvious sign that you may be facing bed bugs issue. In order not to mistake it for other insect bites or skin allergies, it is best that you consult a healthcare practitioner to have it diagnosed.
Reddish or dark-brown stains caused by bedbug excrement. These faecal marks are tiny and resemble an ink dot from a regular marker. They can be noticed on the mattress, walls and on bedsheets.
An unusual musty odour that may smell like a pile of dirty laundry or wet towels.
Finding bed bug shell casings or shed skin in areas where bed bugs hide or harbour. These are yellowish-brown and almost translucent exoskeletons of immature bed bugs.
Sighting of bed bug eggs which are oval-shaped and pearly-white in colour, resembling grains of rice, at areas where they breed.
If you suspect an infestation, it is recommended to consult with a professional pest control specialist to conduct an inspection and carry out the necessary treatments to get rid of bed bugs.
Tips to prevent bed bugs from spreading
The best method to stop bed bugs from spreading is to conduct visual inspections regularly to identify any early signs of infestation. Here are some home remedies that you may adopt to help avoid the spread of bed bugs:
Check luggage and personal belongings, especially after a holiday or staycation
Be mindful of used furniture, clothes or share belongings. Conduct thorough checks before bringing them home.
Declutter your home and seal cracks, gaps and crevices to reduce hiding and breeding grounds for bed bugs.
Wash linen and sheets in high temperatures between 50 to 60 degrees celsius for at least 30 minutes to eliminate any bed bug eggs.
Regular cleaning and vacuuming to remove the presence of live bed bugs and their eggs.
Get rid of bed bugs fast
A bed bug problem can be difficult to treat. It is almost impossible to get rid of bed bugs on your own due to their speed of reproduction and ability to hide and harbour in tight spaces. Want to kill bed bugs fast? Engage a professional bed bug removal service to take care of the problem. Instead of waiting for the problem to get out of hand, taking action early against an existing bed bug infestation helps prevent it from escalating or worsening.
Bed bug removal in Singapore
A skilled and trained specialist can tackle and get rid of bed bugs quickly by identifying the pest and signs of infestation. Contact Bingo Pest at 6517 9989 or firstname.lastname@example.org for powerful, effective and customised solutions to eliminate bed bugs where they live and breed in your property.