Early Warning Signs of Bed Bugs to Look Out for and How to Treat Bites

Early Warning Signs of Bed Bugs to Look Out for and How to Treat Bites

Early Warning Signs of Bed Bugs to Look Out for and How to Treat Bites

Bed bugs are tiny insects with a reddish-brown color that feed on human and animal. You can usually find them in areas where people sleep, such as beds, sofas, and recliners. Some early warning signs of bed bugs to look out for:

Bed bug bites: The main clear sign of a bed bug infestation is the appearance of gnawing on your skin. These are usually small, red, and itchy and typically occur on any part of your body exposed while you sleep. Bed bug bites often appear as small, raised, red welts on the skin, usually in a line or cluster. However, not everyone reacts to bed bug bites, so their absence does not necessarily mean that bed bugs are not present.

Live bed bugs: If you see live bed bugs, it is a sure sign of an infestation. Bed bugs are small, about the size of apple seeds, and are reddish-brown in color. Look for them in the seams and crevices of your mattress, box spring, bed frame, behind baseboards, under furniture, and other areas around your bed. In case of heavy infestation, you can consider heating treatment for bed bugs, especially if you want to avoid toxic chemicals in your home.

Bloodstains: Bed bugs feed on blood, so you may find blood stains on your sheets, pillowcases, or mattress. You may often see these small and dark stains surrounded by reddish-brown spots. These stains are due to the bed bugs crushed while feeding on your blood.

Fecal stains: Bed bugs also leave behind fecal stains, which are small, dark, and often found on sheets, pillowcases, and mattresses. Look for these spots on your mattress, box spring, headboard, and other areas around your bed. These stains may look like tiny ink spots or smears.

Shed skins: Bed bugs shed their skins as they grow and molt. You can usually find these shed skins in areas where bed bugs hide, such as the seams of mattresses, behind headboards, and in the cracks and crevices of furniture.

Musty odor: Bed bugs release a musty odor, easily detectable in heavily infested areas. The sweet or sickly smell may be stronger in areas where there are a large number of bed bugs.

What to Do for a Bed Bug Bite

Bed bug bites can be itchy and uncomfortable but are usually not serious. Some steps to alleviate the symptoms include washing the affected area with soap and water to clean the bite site and prevent infection and applying a cold compress to the bite area to reduce swelling and itching. According to the American Association of Dermatology, you can apply topical hydrocortisone cream to the bite area to relieve itching and inflammation. Since it can lead to infection, you should not scratch the bite. You should seek medical attention if the symptoms persist or worsen.


It's also important to eliminate bed bugs from your home, such as washing bedding and clothing in hot water, vacuuming thoroughly, and sealing cracks and crevices where bed bugs may be hiding. If the problem is severe, you should contact a professional exterminator.