Bedbugs

Picture of Bedbug Bites

The first sign of bedbugs may be red, itchy bites on the skin, usually on the arms or shoulders. Bedbugs tend to leave straight rows of bites, unlike some other insects that leave bites here and there.

Bedbugs do not seem to spread disease to people. But itching from the bites can be so bad that some people will scratch enough to cause breaks in the skin that get infected easily.

Bedbug facts

  • Bedbugs are small, oval insects that feed by sucking blood from humans or animals. Bedbugs do not fly.
  • Bedbugs can live anywhere in the home. They can live in cracks in furniture or in any type of textile, including upholstered furniture. They are most common in beds, including the mattress, box springs, and bed frames.
  • Bedbugs are most active at night. They may bite any exposed areas of skin while an individual is sleeping. Common locations for bedbug bites are the face, neck, hands, and arms.
  • A bedbug bite is painless and is generally not noticed. The bites may be mistaken for a rash of another cause. Small, flat, or raised bumps on the skin are the most common sign. Symptoms include redness, swelling, and itching.
  • Typically, no treatment is required for bedbug bites. If itching is severe, steroid creams or oral antihistamines may be used for symptom relief.
  • Home remedies for bedbug bites include measures to combat itching, such as oatmeal baths or cool compresses.
  • Fecal stains, egg cases, and shed skins (exuviae) of bedbugs in crevices and cracks on or near beds are suggestive that bedbugs may be present, but only observing the bugs themselves can confirm an active infestation. A professional pest-control company may be required to help identify and remove bedbugs from the home. Continue Reading
1/10
Reviewed on 5/6/2016
Bed Bugs Pictures Slideshow: Don't Let the Bed Bugs Bite

STAY INFORMED

Get the Latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!