Bed Bugs

By Medically reviewed by hellodoktor


What are bed bugs?

Bed bugs are a commonly known term for a kind of bug feeding on human or animals when they are asleep. They have a brownish color that turns reddish after a blood meal.

Bed bugs can move quickly from places to places such as floors, walls or ceiling without flying because that is not what they do. Like most kinds of bug, bed bugs have quite a rapid rate of reproduction. A female one can produce three or more generations each year, and she can lay hundreds of eggs when she is alive.

Bed bugs reach their maturity through a shedding process after meals up to 5 times. Immature bedbugs are called nymphs. An ideal living condition will help the bugs develop fully as fast as 1 month, plus their reproduction rate, your room can easily become a bed bug’s colony in no time at all.

How common are bed bugs?

With the size of an apple seed, bed bugs can be easily found typically in cracks, mattresses, bed frames or anywhere that can lead them to their meals during bedtimes. There are many bedbugs in hotels, they can travel from room to room or even outside in visitor’s personal belongings such as briefcases, backpack, etc. It can affect patients at any age. Please discuss with your doctor for further information.


What are the symptoms of bed bugs infestation?

The common symptoms of bed bugs are:

  • Along with actual sighting of the bugs, there are some subtle signs that indicate you have company beside the itchy welts that may or may not be from mosquito bites.
  • Bloodstains on your bed.
  • Bed bugs’ waste which is dark and rusty, egg shells and shed skins on your bed mattresses, cracks or any capable hiding places.
  • Musty smell.

There may be some symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptom, please consult your doctor.

When should I see my doctor?

If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult with your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.


What are the causes of bed bugs?

Since they are creatures that live on blood, you can catch them almost everywhere. Some may be dwelling at your friend’s home, your office, gym, stores, hotels or on some used sofas, in clothes piled up on the sidewalks for sale, and so on. With their physical agility, they can easily hoop on your bag or even your body without being recognized and follow you home. Having bedbugs does not mean your room is dirty, it just means you accidentally have an unwelcomed friend.

Risk factors

What increases the risk of bed bugs?

Bed bugs can be easily caught everywhere.

Diagnosis & treatment

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.

How is bed bugs diagnosed?

It is difficult to diagnose that you have been bitten by bed bugs or not. As soon as you notice the signs of the condition, immediately check the following signs:

  • Dark specks: a sign of division bed bugs. Check the location along the mattress, pillows, sofa.
  • Rusty or reddish stains. The red spots found on bed linen is a testament to the presence of bed bugs in your home.

How to treat bed bugs?

The best way to treat bed bugs is to hire an experienced pest exterminator to do the job. Make sure the insecticides are acceptable in bedroom areas, otherwise they may make you sick. And as long as bed bugs are very good at reproducing, you should call the pest exterminator the sooner the better.

Lifestyle changes & home remedies

What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage bed bugs?

The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with bed bugs:

  • Clean your bed including sheets and pillows.
  • Curtains are also a good place for bed bugs, so don’t skip them.
  • Scrub the mattresses to remove the eggs before washing or vacuuming. Prepare to get a new mattress if you must, and remember to clean everything else before getting the new mattress.
  • Notice the cracks on the walls as they are ideal hiding spots, so get rid of them by repairing and gluing them up in case you use wallpapers.
  • Tidy your room, keep things neat, un-mess your piles of clothes.

If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnose or treatment.

Review Date: November 24, 2016 | Last Modified: September 12, 2019