While bed bugs are becoming an increasingly common problem for more and more people around the world, bed bug signs aren’t always clear. So what are the common bed bug signs?
Remember that bed bugs can be introduced into your home from second hand furniture (beds, couches) as well as via your luggage after a vacation and by other hosts.
Even if you can’t pinpoint the origin of the bed bugs, there are several common signs that can help you to determine whether you’re dealing with a bed bug infestation.
Bed bug rash
One of the first signs of the presence of bed bugs is the dreaded red rash.
A bed bug rash is generally itchy, and in some individuals it can also be inflamed. It resembles a cluster of small mosquito bites or flea bites.
Bed bugs can bite you anywhere – on the arms, legs, torso, back, neck and face – so the rash may be localised to one area or be apparent all over your body.
Bed bugs on your bedding
You may be able to identify bed bugs simply by taking a good look at your bed, bedding, mattress and the furniture surrounding your bed. Pay particular attention to cracks, corners and crevices, as bed bugs like to hide in dark spots.
Adult bed bugs can be seen by the naked eye, yet signs of smaller bugs in various bed bug life-cycle stages may be more difficult to spot.
Blood stains on your sheets
Another common bed bug sign is blood stains on your sheets and pillowcases.
Blood stains can come from bugs that may have been squashed during the night as well as excess blood after the bug has finished feeding on the host.
It’s important to note that blood stains alone may not indicate the presence of bed bugs. If you find blood stains on your sheets, you should try to identify other signs of bed bugs before assuming you have an infestation.
Bed bug droppings
The droppings of bed bugs may appear as small, smeared brownish-red or rusty-coloured spots on your bedding and on the areas surrounding your bed. They will probably be present along with castings and eggs.
Bed bug castings
As they move to the next life-cycle, bed bugs cast or shed their skin. The skin is hollow and light-coloured.
Castings of various sizes, as well as bed bug egg shells, may be visible on your sheets and bedding if you look closely.
Sometimes, bed bugs can give off an odour from their scent glands which may be mild and musty or stronger. Some people describe the odour released by bed bugs as similar to that of berries.
While there hasn’t been extensive research into bed bug odour, scientists speculate that the scent glands and the scent may attract other bed bugs.
Still not sure if you have bed bugs? Try our instant bed bug identification.
We may be able to help you identify bed bugs if you’re having trouble working out whether you’re dealing with an infestation or not.
Simply take a clear photo of the bugs or bites and send them to us!