Bed Bug Identification

What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

Bed bugs are known for being difficult to spot with the naked eye. In the early stages, bed bug nymphs are clear in color and almost impossible to see. As they grow older and begin to feed, their coloring turns to a brownish hue. They range in size from 1–5 mm, about the size of a small apple seed. Their bodies are flat, broad and oval in shape and become swollen and slightly elongated after feeding.

Instead of looking for actual bed bugs, looking for evidence of their presence is an effective way to identify an infestation:

  • Tiny, dark stains on bed sheets, mattresses, furniture or elsewhere
  • Bed bug shell casings
  • A subtle sweet, musty odor
  • Unexplained bug bites or red, itchy bumps on the body

Where Do Bed Bugs Live?

Contrary to popular belief that bed bugs are only found in large cities, the truth is they can actually be found everywhere. We don’t just mean any town. Bed bugs can literally be found anywhere. Single family homes, hotels, apartment buildings, college dorms, office buildings, restaurants, retail stores, busses, trains, you name it!

Once bed bugs invade a space, they hide during the day and become active creatures of the night. Daytime hiding spaces include inside furniture, behind picture frames, underneath wallpaper, and, of course, in mattresses.

How Can I Identify a Bed Bug Bite?

In addition to understanding how to identify bed bugs by their appearance and other signs, we need to be able to identify bed bugs by their bites. Many people wrongly classify any bite as a bed bug bite, which can cause unnecessary stress if bed bugs were not the culprit. On the other hand, some assume a bite is not from bed bugs because they don’t see any other signs of an infestation. This could result in bed bug problems getting worse. Yikes!

Unfortunately, bed bug bites are hard to identify, even by doctors. It’s best to rule out other causes first, such as mosquitoes, fleas, mites or biting gnats. Here are some characteristics of bed bug bites:

  • Red, itchy bumps that are flat or raised
  • A darker spot in the middle of the bite
  • Multiple bites in a straight row, cluster or zig zag pattern
  • Bites found predominantly on the arms, shoulders, neck and face
  • Flat or raised areas that appear several days after contact

Aerex Has the Solution

The pest control experts at Aerex understand the importance of timeliness when it comes to bed bug control. To learn how we can help with your bed bug extermination and prevention needs, give us a call at (847) 255-8888, or click below to get a free quick quote. We also recommend heading over to our Resource Center to see what preparations you must do before bed bug extermination can be done in your home.


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