What Can Bedbugs Do to You?


Quick Answer

A bedbug's bite usually causes redness, swelling, inflammation and itching. These reactions are a result of proteins in the saliva of the bed bug entering the host's bloodstream. The severity of these reactions depends on an individual's immune response and are sometimes severe enough to interfere with daily activities.

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What Can Bedbugs Do to You?
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Full Answer

Bedbugs are very small and often hide in mattresses, bedding and tiny cracks in furniture, floors or walls. Young bugs are pale yellow and almost transparent, while adults are a rusty red and have flat, wingless, oval bodies. The bedbug swells and becomes a brighter red as it feeds, which makes it easier to see. Bedbugs take advantage of the stillness of a sleeping host to feed. They are very hardy animals, being able to survive for over a year without food.

Bedbugs' small size makes them difficult to see until the bites are noted. A bedbug infestation is not necessarily a sign of a dirty environment, as bedbugs can thrive in very clean environments. Signs of infestation include blood smears on the sheets from crushed bugs, tiny black spots from fecal droppings and dried bedbug skins. Other insects can leave bites that resemble those of a bedbug, so the most accurate way to identify a bedbug infestation is to find a live specimen within the space suspected of infestation.

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