How to Tell If You Have Bed Bugs: 10 Surefire Signs

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Are you itching at the small, red bumps that are blooming against your skin? Did you know that female bed bugs can lay over 200 eggs, allowing them to spread quickly? You might not identify that your home is infested soon enough, which can lead to thousands of bed bugs lurking!

Keep reading to discover how to tell if you have bed bugs. By recognizing these 10 signs, you can clear out the infestation before bed bugs spread throughout your entire home.

Otherwise, those itchy bites will become the least of your worries.

Don’t let bed bugs take over your home. Instead, continue reading to prepare yourself with these 10 signs you have bed bugs.

1. Small, Itchy Bug Bites

As mentioned above, one of the first signs of bed bugs is red bites and bumps across your skin. Bed bugs love snacking on human blood. They’ll come out at night while you’re sleeping, nip your skin, and leave their little bug bites behind.

Bed bugs don’t only appear while you’re sleeping, though. They can also bite while you’re driving or traveling and in most cases, they won’t bite right away.

Instead, they’ll latch onto you or your belongings and wait until later.

When learning how to tell if you have bed bugs, check your skin. Some bed bug bites look similar to mosquito bites. These bites sometimes appear in a distinctive pattern, since bed bugs feast together, usually  next to each other  in a straight line or other patterns.

However, not everyone has a physical reaction to bed bug bites. It’s important to check your home regularly for the rest of the signs of bed bugs mentioned below.

2. Dark Stains on the Bed Sheets

In order to confirm you have bed bugs, check your sheets. Bed bugs are messy creatures. They often leave small stains behind.

If you don’t change your bedding weekly, check your bed sheets and pillowcase for reddish stains or small spots. These spots will likely bleed like a marker against your sheets. If you’re waking up with your sheets peppered with bloodstains, start looking for bugs or their eggs.

You might unknowingly squish a bug while you’re sleeping. Check your pajamas and skins for signs of bug bites and excretions as well.

3. You Stay in Hotels Frequently

Do you travel often? If so, learning how to tell if you have bed bugs is essential. You can use these tips to check for bed bugs before you crawl into that hotel bed.

Use the SLEEP method, which involves:

  • Surveying the room for signs of infection, such as black or brown spots on the furniture.
  • Lifting the bed to look for hidden bugs.
  • Elevating luggage away from the bed and wall.
  • Examining your belongings for bugs and spots when you repack.
  • Placing dryer-safe clothing from your luggage into the dryer on the highest setting when you return home.

Using these tips will help you combat a potential infestation after traveling.

4. People You Know Have Bed Bugs

Do you have friends or family members who have recently complained about a bed bug infestation? If so, it’s important to know that these creatures love to travel. If someone you know has had a bed bug problem, make sure to check your home too.

Try to avoid sharing clothes or furniture, too. You might unknowingly bring a bed bug into your home on a jacket or other possession.

5. Flakes on Your Bed or Clothing

As you search your home for these bed bug signs, make sure to examine the bed thoroughly. If you don’t find bloodstains, you might find small flakes on your bed or clothing instead.

Bed bug casings are small, a clear reddish-brown color, and oval. You might notice these casings before any other indicator mentioned in this guide.

These casings aren’t a sign that your home is unclean. Rather, it indicates that your bed bugs are growing and shedding. When bed bugs grow, they shed their skin and leave it behind.

This skin will appear see-through, light, and immobile. If you start to notice skin shells, it indicates you have fully mature, adult bed bugs in your home.

6. You’ve Found Small Eggs

You might also begin to notice small eggs or empty eggshells throughout your home. When bed bugs hatch, they’ll leave these little shells behind.

Bed bug eggs are oblong and semi-transparent or white. They’ll likely resemble a grain of rice. You won’t see one egg, but likely a few clustered together.

7. Weird, Musty Odors

Are you starting to notice an unfamiliar, musty odor in your home? That smell is one of the most common signs of bed bugs.

Bed bugs release pheromones. When many bugs are present, it can release a more potent smell. The more bugs, the stronger the smell.

Take notice if your home starts to smell like a bunch of damp towels. Even if the room is clean, you might notice this smell as an indicator of bed bugs.

8. Dark Spots on Your Walls

Bugs can infest your clothing, bed, furniture, and your walls.

After a bed bug eats, it voids out previous meals to make room for the new blood. This can cause dark stains. When you try to wipe the stain away, it will likely smear.

Check for fecal stains on your walls or under any wallpaper. If you suspect you have an infestation but can’t find proof, the bugs may be hidden in your walls.

9. You Recently Bought Secondhand Furniture

While it’s exciting to find a great deal on a piece of furniture, secondhand furniture can sometimes invite pests into your home. Before purchasing anything, make sure to inspect the piece of furniture. Don’t bring it into your home before taking a look, first.

Make sure to check for bloodstains, casings, eggs, or anything else suspicious. Saving a dollar on second hand furniture can sometimes lead to spending way more on pest control.

10. You Find an Actual Bed Bug

Fully-grown bed bugs are usually between one to five millimeters by one to three millimeters wide. Though they’re small, they’re still visible to the naked eye. Most bed bug species are a distinct, reddish-brown color.

If you find an actual bed bug, they’ll likely appear the size of an apple seed. They’re more difficult to spot than cockroaches or larger spiders, though, so it helps to have a professional look for you.

How to Tell If You Have Bed Bugs: 10 Signs to Look Out For

Now that you know how to tell if you have bed bugs, start searching. If you recognize any of these signs, call a team of professionals right away. They’ll clear out the bed bugs from your home before they can spread further. Canine inspections are a great way to detect if bed bugs are present on your property.

Contact us today to receive a free quote. If you’d like a canine to come inspect your property, let us know!

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