Bed Bug Bites – What Should You Do if You Get Them?
Finding insect bites in the morning doesn’t necessarily mean that they are from bed bugs. However, you shouldn’t ignore the fact that you may have an infestation going on without you noticing. Before concluding that you have a bed bug infestation, it is crucial to confirm if you really do have bed bug bites. The last thing that you want to do is call a local exterminator, and it ends up being a false alarm.
What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?
The first thing that you should do is inspect the bites. If you suspect that you have bed bugs, you can only confirm it if you know how the bites look. One way to tell that you have bed bugs is to look for fecal matter. They look like small, black felt tip pen dots on the mattress. Confirm they are indeed from bed bugs by using our Bed Bug Blue Pro fecal matter kit, which helps you to easily determine if the black dots you find are from bed bugs.
Keep in mind that bed bug bites resemble certain insect bites, similar to mosquito bites. The bites are usually red and raised. Some may develop blisters over time, depending on the body’s reaction to the bites.
Since bed bug bites are very similar to other insect bites, even a physician may find it hard to diagnose with just one look. The following are a few other things you should consider looking at with the bites:
- The bite pattern. Bed bug bites are known for their bite patterns that either come in a line or a zigzag pattern. The pattern may consist of three to five bites, always in groups.
- You will find the bites only on exposed areas when you were sleeping.
- Rashes or bumps usually go away after a few weeks. Some individuals may react differently with the bites and may require prescription medicine to heal faster and prevent scarring.
These are only a few of the signs associated with bed bug bites. If the bites resemble anything like these, then they are most likely caused by bed bugs.
When Do Bed Bug Bites Appear? Other Symptoms You Should Be Aware Of
Most of the time, bed bug bites don’t appear immediately. Usually, it takes a few days before the bites appear or other symptoms develop.
Do bed bugs bite every night? No. Most people assume that bed bugs bite every night, but they bite whenever they feel the need to and when the host is near. In fact, they can go weeks or even months without eating as long as their hiding places are comfortable and untouched.
The bites are itchy, with some who feel a burning sensation on the bite marks. Because of the small amount of anesthesia released by bed bugs as they bite, you won’t feel anything while they feed on you.
A secondary infection may only develop if you continue to scratch the bites. Continuous scratching will result in bleeding and swelling, which may require further treatment and cause scarring.
What to Do with Bed Bug Bites
Do bed bug bites get worse over time? Yes, if you keep touching and scratching the area. Also, infections may develop depending on your body’s reaction to the bites. After treating the bitten area and leaving it alone, the bites will typically go away after a few weeks.
However, if you want to hasten the healing process, you can try the following things:
- Keep the area clean.
- If the itching becomes unbearable, wash it with warm water and antibacterial soap.
- Apply ice or a cold compress over the bitten area. This can reduce the swelling and stop inflammation and pain associated with the bites.
- Neosporin is an effective remedy to prevent infections.
- Antihistamines can also reduce extreme itchiness.
- Do scars from bed bug bite go away? If the bites and scars don’t disappear, have it checked by your doctor to get the proper prescription medicine.
To stop the bites, you can do the following things:
- Encase your mattress and box springs. Use a bed bug-proof mattress cover or a box spring encasement to prevent bed bugs hiding in your bed from biting you.
- Use interceptors to prevent bed bugs from climbing on your bed and reaching you as you sleep.
- Bed bug traps are also effective in monitoring bed bugs and knowing how serious the infestation is in your room or home.
With all of these facts in mind, you will have a better idea of what bed bug bites look like and how you can relieve the discomfort associated with them. You will also have an idea of what you can do to stop bed bugs from reaching and biting you whenever you sleep or lie on your bed.
- Sheila Nicole