Do Bed Bugs Actually Bite Humans?

Someone at some point in your life may have sent you to bed with a warning, “Don’t let the bed bugs bite.” But do they actually bite? Does it hurt? What is with all of the fuss and deep-cleaning when someone finds a bed bug? Are they just gross pests or do they actually pose a threat to humans? Most importantly, what can be done about them?

Keep reading to learn more about these strange, invasive pests. Once you do, you’ll want to call for bed bug heat treatments in St. Louis at the first sign of a bed bug.

Bed Bug Behavior
Bed bugs do far more than snuggle up and sleep next to you at night. They are tiny parasitic bugs that prefer to consume human blood over any other food. They are nocturnal, so they drink your blood when you are most vulnerable: at night, while you are sleeping. They eat 3 times during a nocturnal cycle, which is why they leave behind a distinctive 3-bite line pattern.

If you notice a grouping of 3 insect bites on your body, then you may have been a bed bug’s meal during your sleep.

They do not travel much, so they will live, eat, sleep, and produce droppings in your own bedroom, moving just a few feet in order to reach your exposed skin. They are able to penetrate your skin with a long, sharp mouth and directly consume your blood, much in the same way as mosquitoes. Even worse, you can be overtaken by a swarm of bed bugs across your body, leaving behind clusters of bites. Though their bites are not particularly painful and not irritating enough to wake you up at night—they have an anesthetic in their saliva that numbs you to their bites—there are still risks associated with their feeding behavior.

Bed Bug Risks
At the very least, the fact that bed bugs inject you with anesthetics and anti-coagulants—which prevent blood clots, your body’s self-defense against bleeding—should concern you. They can consume large amounts of blood in a short amount of time. Because, like mosquitoes, they feed on several animals and contact their bloodstream with the same tool each time, they can also spread dangerous diseases.

Where to Find Them
Bed bugs typically hide in baseboards, rugs, wallpaper, cracks in the wall, mattresses, and even in the clothing in your closet. Because they are particularly good at staying hidden, they can lay eggs and multiply quickly before you even notice one of them. In a matter of days, then can completely overtake your bedroom.

The professional rule is that if you see one bed bug, there is not just one, but up to hundreds that are hidden. Only one unlucky bug may happen to be caught red-handed.

What Are the Signs?
There are a few simple signs that you may have bed bugs:

Blood stains on your clothing or bedding
Bites in clusters of 3
Bug sheddings
The sight of even 1 small, beetle-like insect