Bed bugs are nasty little critters that are notoriously known to pilfer our blood in our sleep. But like most subjects in the world, bed bugs have myths attached to them and we at A Five Star Termite & Pest Control would like to share these myths and debunk them.
Busting Bed Bug Myths
Myth #1 Bed bugs only bite at night.
Bed bugs are typically nocturnal and favor human blood. If they are deprived of their food source, they will go looking for a meal at any time. Keeping the light on all night will not keep them at bay.
Myth #2 Bed bugs only eat, sleep and hide on the mattress.
Where a few bed bugs might be prone to sticking close to the food source, as their population grows they spread out. Bed bugs find anywhere they manage to hide and feel secure; outlets, behind light switch plates, picture frames, alarm clocks, computer keyboards, behind flaps of wallpaper and baseboards, the possibilities are endless.
Myth #3 Bed bugs favor filthy environments.
Bed bugs are nondiscriminatory. They can be found in the most pristine and immaculate high-end buildings and down in the slums.
Myth #4 Bed bugs fly.
Flying is not possible as bed bugs do not have wings. Bed bugs do however crawl about a three feet a minute.
Myth #5 Bed bugs rapidly reproduce.
Bed bugs are slow to reproduce in comparison to other insects. For example; a common housefly will lay up to 500 eggs within 3-4 days where an adult female bedbug only produces on average 1 egg per day. Bedbug eggs take 10 days to hatch and adults are developed in 5-6 weeks.
Myth #6 Bed bugs can survive without a host for up to a year.
Though there is a debate among scientists concerning this myth, the evidence points to bed bugs that live in consistent normal room temperature, can only survive 2-3 without a blood meal. Being cold-blooded, the bed bugs metabolism will slow down in chillier climates, giving them better odds at survive a year without a bloody meal.
Myth #7 Bed bugs use our bodies to spread to other people and places.
Bed bugs are not like lice, ticks, or fleas and hide in hair or stick on skin, like lice or ticks, and since they do not like warmth and are also unlikely to be in the clothes you are wearing. Bed bugs are primarily transferred by backpacks, luggage, shoes and other items.
Myth #8 DDT should be used to combat bed bugs.
Banned in 1972, the controversial pesticide DDT had already lost much of its potency and most bed bugs had built a resistance to it.
Myth #9 Bed bugs can be eliminated with bug spray.
Because of their resistance to poisons, bed bugs cannot be killed by department pesticides and chemical agents are no longer effective methods of treatment. Fumigation and heat treatments are most ideal, but it can be very expensive.
Myth #10 Bed bugs are harmful to your health.
Bed bugs do not transmit any known diseases, but their bites can potentially lead to anxiety, sleeplessness and even secondary infections, but there have been no reported cases of bed bugs transmitting disease to humans. However, they do carry human pathogens; 27 known viruses, bacteria, protozoa and more have been found in bed bugs, but these microbes don’t reproduce or multiply within the bed bugs.