Did you wake up this morning with bites all over your body? If you did there is every possibility that that they are bed bug bites!
So what are bed bugs?
They belong to the Cimicidae family which are blood sucking ectoparasites which prey on birds or mammals. All the organisms belonging to this species are reddish brown in colour. Females tend to be little larger than males and lay their fertilized eggs in cracks and crevices around the home, hotel rooms, hospitals – anywhere really they do not discriminate!. The nymphs hatch within 4 to 5 days.
It is true to say that the numbers of people suffering bed bug bites are increasing all over the globe. This is most likely due to the increased resistance that the bed bugs have built up to traditionally used insecticides. One such instance is the insecticide pyrethroid to which most of the bed bug population in the USA appear to be resistant.
Bed bug bites are not always easily diagnosed and at times can be mistaken for other skin conditions or bites from other insects. As a rule however, those who suffer an allergic reaction to the anaesthetic found in bed bug bites will discover risen red bumps or flat welts on exposed areas of skin which are usually very itchy and can cause great discomfort. On the other hand there are many people – thought to be around half of all people – who will have no visible bed bug bites what so ever – in cases like this it is very difficult to identify and eradicate the infestation effectively.
Reactions to bed bug bites do vary from person to person and factors such as the species of bug, the environment and skin type play a large part. There are rare occasions when the allergic reaction can cause illness. The most common effect that an infestation of bed bugs and the bed bug bites has is one of anxiety and stress as well as many sleepless nights. Of course the insomnia is not just caused by the itching but also by the fear of being bitten again because of coarse bed bugs are nocturnal. They are attracted to their food supply by the body heat, carbon dioxide from air breathed out and sweat from sleeping victims.
There are various treatments for bed bug bites:
1. Systemic Corticosteroids – these treat the itching and the burning sensation often caused by bed bug bites but have little or no effect on the bumps or welts on the skin.
2. Topical corticosteroids – the best known hydrocortisone will ease the itch and help the welts a little.
3. Antihistamines – give some relief from itching but have no effect on the actual bed bug bites.
4. A very simple but seemingly effective treatment for bed bug bites is the application of heat either in the form of a hair dryer or heated flannels placed on the affected area. Hot water can also bring relief however, great care must be taken to avoid scalds to the skin as it is necessary for the water to be fairly hot at around 50 degrees Celsius for best effect.
All that said the best way to avoid bed bug bites is to deal with any infestation quickly and efficiently using your vacuum cleaner, a steam cleaner and a fast, effective bed bug spray to eradicate the bugs and the bed bug bites!
The Bed Bug Patrol range includes more than just the bed bug spray, you can also purchase and bed bug traps and many more items which will help you in the battle of the bed bugs. Items can be bought individually or as part of a kit which will save you time and money because everything you will need will arrive at your door together.
To find out more read 6 Tips For The Treatment Of Bed Bugs