If you think that filth is the reason behind bed bug infestation, you have a half-baked story! Rather, bed bugs are agile hitchhikers attracted to areas where warmth and carbon dioxide concentrations are high. However, if the concentration becomes higher, then according to a study by Scientific Reports, the blood-sucking pests start feeding on hosts. That’s precisely where you get those itchy red bites. So, where do bed bugs come from, actually, and how must you save yourself and your surroundings from their attacks? You can scroll down this article and find out the answer for yourself –
Table of Contents
Where do bed bugs come from?
You will be surprised to know that bed bugs categorically search for concealed locations and fresh blood while the rest of the issues follow up. Unlike the ticks that feed on their prey or mosquitos that have the capacity to fly – bed bugs get entangled with clothes, bags, items of luggage, public transport, second-hand goods, and shared areas to spread from one place to another.
Let’s give you a little more clarity
1. Travelling is one of the most-common ways to get bed bugs
You won’t believe it, but transit is one of the most common ways by which bed bugs spread. A 2016 survey of 100 US hotels shows that despite 82% of them being treated for bed bugs, the menace has reoccurred. The primary sources via which they have been spread are – bed linen, mattresses, and crevices of wooden furniture.
So basically, what has happened – people traveling via airplanes, public transport, cruise ships, cabs, and any other mode of transport have been spreading bed bugs. Despite the hotel rooms being pesticide controlled, these bugs have made a slithering comeback and solidly strengthened their area of infestation.
Don’t be surprised if the 7-star property or your AirBnb has bed bugs despite promising a ‘clean stay.’
2. Your kids could be the hosts
This is not to scare your kids, but if they ever ask where do bed bugs come from – you could always state that they might be the carriers of the same. Whether it’s a sleepover or a party that the child has attended, they could carry back bed bugs in the folds of their clothes or even in their personal belongings.
They are almost the size of an apple seed and do not come to notice immediately. Therefore – they must wash and dry their clothes every time they come back from gathering to prevent their further infestation.
image credit – The Today Show
3. Getting second hand goods despite pest control
You will be quite surprised to know that second-hand furniture (despite their integrated pest management) is another area for infestation. The items bought from flea markets may seem quite like a bargain, but chances are high they are infested with bed bugs.
The seller may have cleaned it and preserved it well, but even then, bed bugs can dominate the area. But if you do not scrutinize well, then that could lead to you buying that product and giving the leverage to the bed bugs to spread to other areas in your home.
4. Shared housing space
You might be unaware, but shared spaces are one of the hubs of bed bugs. If the living arrangement is more like cramped housing or a colony set-up, then these bed bugs spread via air vents, wall crevices, and wooden floorboards. Due to their creeping nature, they spread very fast, unlike any other flea.
How do you know they have infested a place?
Unexplained skin rashes
One of the biggest clues to know if a bed bug has infested your mattress or clothes is by checking if you are having unexplained skin rashes. Though their bites are painless, their saliva causes allergic reactions creating welts (often in a batch of 2-3 welts together). Most of the time, these welts remain swollen and are itchy.
Red spots or sugar like matter
Bed bugs leave behind fecal matter, blood stains of their digested blood, and exoskeleton shedding, especially in the crevices, floorboards, seams, or any covered area. Know for a fact that they have infested that area, and if not taken care of immediately – it might recur.
Why are they so difficult to control?
Since you already know where do bed bugs come from then, automatically controlling it should become easy. However, that is not the case. Rather, their spread is extremely difficult to control. Here are the reasons –
- They are difficult to spot and can be easily re-introduced into a specific area.
- These bed bugs are resistant to most insecticide treatments and, therefore, may not be completely eliminated even after pest-treatment
- Also, bed bugs have an affinity for wooden surfaces and fabrics. Hence, the chances of them to be hiding there are high, with no respite from the same.
How to control bed bug infestation?
Seems like there is no way out, or is there? Here are some of the procedures by which you will be able to stagnate its infestation –
1. Inspection and cleaning is the way to survive
You cannot precisely figure out where do bed bugs come from or if your clothes or furniture has it, where it came from. But you can inspect it regularly and clean it. Keep your home clutter free (do not pile up clothes or keep your laundry unwashed for a long time) and check the edges, mattresses, seams, floorboards, and moldings for sheddings and dark spots.
2. Be very cautious while buying second-hand goods
As you have already noted that second-hand goods are one of the places from where bed bugs come, you must inspect second-hand goods thoroughly before finalizing. Especially while getting rental furniture, you need to be cautious of nymphs, eggs, and even adult bed bugs, which might be hiding in crevices or folds.
If you find any sugar-like matter or even a dark red spot, chances are high that the particular area is bed bug-infested (or was infested) and can reoccur. Get integrated pest management done immediately.
3. Vacuum at regular intervals
Though there are not many ways to keep the bed bugs at bay, vacuuming is a great alternative. After every trip, you must vacuum your suitcases. Along with that, at intervals of maybe 3-4 months, you must vacuum your sofa sets, beds, and any other crevices or folded areas since these are the primary habitation grounds of bed bugs.
4. Steam cleaning is a way out
When steam cleaning, the set temperature can go up to 82 – degrees. This kills the bed bugs. In fact, if you opt for a commercial steamer, assuredly, it will penetrate into the fibers and clears off that infested area. However, this is only restricted to fabrics and fibers and is not suitable for crevices or hard flat surfaces.
5. Heat drying is another way to try
Bed bugs and their eggs hide in the laundry. When you clean your laundry and heat dry them, this process reduces bed bugs significantly. However, constant cleaning is required to prevent it from coming back.
Assuming you have read this article well, you have a fair idea about where do bed bugs come from and are better equipped to deal with the same. Having said that, you need to maintain your hygiene as well as clean the bedsheets regularly and vacuum the crevices of sofa sets and luggage cases. Supposedly, if you take these steps, you will be able to handle the bed bug issue that seems to be recently creating a hassle globally.
Do you have some tricks up your sleeve to keep bed bugs from coming home? Do share the same with us and keep following this page for more!
Frequently Ask Questions
Q: Where do bed bugs come from?
A: Bed bugs are typically found in areas where humans reside or frequent. They can be found in hotels, homes, dormitories, hospitals, and public transportation. They often hide in mattresses, bedding, furniture, cracks in walls or floors, and other hiding spots.
Q: How do bed bugs get into homes?
A: Bed bugs can enter homes through various means. They can hitch a ride on luggage, clothing, or used furniture brought into the home. They can also crawl through cracks and crevices in walls, floors, or pipes connecting neighboring apartments or rooms.
Q: Can bed bugs come from dirty environments?
A: Bed bugs are not necessarily attracted to dirt or filth. They are primarily attracted to human blood and warmth. However, cluttered living conditions may provide more hiding spots for them.
Q: Can bed bugs come from pets?
A: While bed bugs prefer human hosts, they can also bite pets if there are no other options available. However, bed bugs do not infest pets like fleas or ticks do.
Q: Can bed bugs come from outdoor areas?
A: Bed bugs are not commonly found outdoors. They primarily infest indoor spaces and rely on human hosts for their survival and reproduction.