Bed Bugs

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Bed Bugs

Bed bugs have become a significant problem in Canada and around the world.

They are easily spread and difficult to treat resulting in rapid growth in the number of bed bug outbreaks around the world.

The key to beating any bed bug infestation is to raise awareness of what to look for and to ensure bed bugs are dealt with quickly once discovered.

The Impact of Bed Bugs

The food source of bed bugs is blood, thus they are classified blood feeders. Bed bugs, Cimex lectularius, feed on the blood of humans and other mammals.

While it is possible for bed bugs to transmit disease, conclusive evidence of transmission is lacking. Instead, the primary concern is the irritation, distress and for sensitive individuals, secondary infection caused by bed bug bites.

Bed bug bites are not painful. Itchiness can result from the body’s reaction to bites, causing discomfort.

Treating the bites can soothe the irritation, but with multiple bites, it can still be very distressing.

Multiple bites and contact with bed bugs can also lead to an itchy rash or eczema. Consult a medical professional for advice and treatment if this occurs.

Identifying Bed Bugs

Adult bed bugs are 4- 5mm long. Prior to feeding they are a flattened oval shape and light brown, but become rounder and darker after feeding.

They come out at night and are attracted to the warmth of our bodies and carbon dioxide in our breath.

They are usually found in bedrooms but hide in cracks and crevices during the day.

The most common shelters for bed bugs are:

  • Seams of mattresses
  • Crevices in the bed frame
  • Behind furniture surrounding the bed (especially the headboard)
  • Where the wall meets the floor.

In well established infestations, dark brown/red or black staining of the mattress from bed bug excrement is typically visible.

An established infestation will also be associated with an unpleasant scent secreted by bed bugs.

Identifying Bed Bug Bites

It is difficult to identify bed bugs from their bite because our bodies react very differently to them.

It is more important to look at the overall pattern and timing of bites and other factors to identify whether bites are caused by bed bugs.

Bed Bug Bites

  • Bed bug bites are unlikely to wake the victim and can occur anywhere on the body, but are often close to blood vessels near the skin.

  • A single bed bug may bite more than once in the same area. However, bites on different parts of the body indicate being bitten by several bed bugs.

  • Early in a bed bug infestation, the victim may not feel any itchiness as they’ve yet to become sensitized to the bites.

  • Small droplets of blood on the sheets will indicate the presence of bed bugs.

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Sources of Bed Bug Infestations

Bed bugs usually enter a property by being carried on clothing or inside furniture.

Bed bug infestations can often be traced back to hotels: Hotels and motels lodge many travelers from all over the world. Bed bugs or their eggs get into clothing or suitcases and are then transported home.

If there are any signs of bed bugs when staying at a hotel, particularly if you notice bites or see blood spots on sheets, take great care in bringing your personal belongings home.

Consult with hotel management to assess the risk - it may be necessary to launder, fumigate or treat clothes to ensure they are safe to introduce to your home.

The same applies in transferring furniture - Rentokil Steritech can treat furniture for bed bugs before bringing it into your home if there may be a risk.

Do Not Spread Bed Bugs

If you discover a bed bug infestation in your home, please do not risk spreading it by taking clothes, suitcases or furniture to hotels or the homes of your friends and families.

Bed bugs can also migrate to adjoining properties through wall or floor cavities. If your home has bed bugs and you live in a flat or a terraced property, please be considerate to your neighbours and act promptly.

How To Get Rid of Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are an objectionable pest and one of the most difficult to eradicate. 

High levels of hygiene, deep cleaning and the use of amateur insecticides will help to keep bed bug numbers under control, however professional treatment will be required to eradicate the infestation.

Rentokil Steritech Pest Control offers a call-out service to deal with bed bugs and other pest problems in properties. Our service is fast, effective and offers the highest level of safety for your employees, customers, family and pets.

Call Rentokil Steritech Pest Control at 1-877-690-2115 for advice on bed bug prevention or to arrange a visit by a Rentokil Steritech technician.

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