Don’t Let Them Bite: Identifying the Early Signs of Bed Bugs

The ultimate guide to identifying the early signs of bed bugs.

Bed bugs are disgusting little creatures that want to drink your blood. And there’s nothing more disgusting than the realization you’ve been getting into bed with these little blood sucking parasites each night. It will make you want to take a week-long shower and burn your bed. 

Luckily there are some things you can look for to identify the early signs of bed bugs if you think you might have an infestation. There are also some great preventative measures you can take to prevent bed bugs before it’s too late.

Sheet Stains – Early Bed Bug Stains On Sheets

If you think you may have bed bugs, your bed sheets are oftentimes the best place to start looking as there may be some early warning signs of bed bugs. Here’s what to look for when searching for early bed bug stains on sheets:

  • Reddish or rusty colored markings on your sheets (may resemble blood stains) are one of the most common early signs of bed bugs. These are caused by bed bugs being crushed.
early signs of bed bugs
  • Small dark spots on your sheets that look like a black pen or black marker lightly dabbed the sheet may also be early signs of bed bugs. This is caused by the bed bug’s feces. 
early signs of bed bugs
  • Bed bugs lay eggs that are very tiny, but you can look for the eggs. And as these baby bed bugs get bigger they shed their skin, which is a translucent to pale yellow which is also one of the early signs of bed bugs.

If you’ve identified some early bed bug stains on sheets, and you think you may have bed bugs, you might also want to look for bed bug bites. If you have strange, itchy bites that appeared overnight and you’re not sure where they came from, there’s a chance they may be from bed bugs. These bites can be tell tale early signs of bed bugs, and here’s how to tell…

Identifying Bed Bug Bites – What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

Bed bug bites can vary from person to person. However, there are some common traits you can look for in a bite to help decide whether or not it came from a bed bug. Here are some tell tale signs of a bed bug bite to be on the lookout for:

  1. Raised red bumps in a line, zig-zag, or random pattern may be the most evident early signs of bed bugs.
  2. These will usually contain a dark red dot in the middle of the bump
  3. May look like pimples with small amounts of puss in the center
  4. May appear on any area of the body that’s exposed.
  5. Can be itchy

It’s important to note that flea bites will normally appear around the wrist and ankles, so if that’s where you’re getting your bites you may want to double check you don’t have fleas. Ankle and wrist bites aren’t necessarily early signs of bed bugs since they may mean you have a totally different infestation. However if you’re getting these bites anywhere else on your body there is a good chance you may have bed bugs.

The next step in verifying whether or not you have bed bugs is to identify a live bed bug. If you have bites, 

“I Think I Found A Bed Bug” – What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

Bed bugs are pretty easy to spot. Adult bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed, and are a dark reddish brown color. They don’t have wings so they can’t fly or jump, so you don’t have to worry about them flying or jumping at you. 

Younger bed bugs are smaller and a little harder to see, however you can still identify them with the naked eye. They’re called nymph bed bugs and they are usually a pale yellow to clear color. If you ever see tiny pale yellow exoskeletons – or shells – this is one of the early signs of bed bugs because it means they’ve shed their skin and are growing to full size.

I’ve Found Early Signs Of Bed Bugs… Now What?

If you’ve identified the early signs of bed bugs, there are some things you can do to quickly eliminate the infestation.

Chemical Control

If you have a bed bug infestation, chemical control is often necessary to get rid of the bugs. There are several types of chemicals that are effective against bed bugs, including:

  • Pyrethrins: These are natural compounds that are derived from chrysanthemums. They are toxic to bed bugs and can be used to kill them.
  • Pyrethroids: These are synthetic compounds that are similar to pyrethrins. They are also toxic to bed bugs and can be used to kill them.
  • Desiccants: These are chemicals that dry out the bugs, killing them.

When using chemicals to control bed bugs, it is important to follow the label instructions and use the products in the correct way.

Heat Treatment

Another effective way to get rid of bed bugs is through heat treatment. This involves using a portable heater to raise the temperature in your home to over 120 degrees Fahrenheit. This temperature is high enough to kill bed bugs and their eggs. Heat treatment can be used in conjunction with chemical control for best results.

Professional Pest Control

If all else fails, or you just don’t want to deal with it yourself, there’s always the option of hiring a pest control service. They’re very good at identifying early signs of bed bugs, and eliminating any infestations.

How Can I Prevent Bed Bugs?

The best way to get rid of bed bugs is to prevent them from infesting your home in the first place. Some steps you can take to prevent bed bugs include:

  • Vacuuming regularly to remove any bugs or eggs that may be present.
  • Keeping your home clean and clutter-free.
  • Using box spring and mattress encasements to prevent bugs from hiding in your bed.
  • Using a bed bug spray or powder to keep bugs away.
  • Be cautious when buying used furniture or staying in hotels, as these are common sources of bed bug infestations.