June 5th through 11th is Bed Bug Awareness Week this year. Established in 2017, this week aims to shed light on one of the most common and most bothersome household pests. In honor of Bed Bug Awareness Week, we’ve put together a quick guide to help you identify and prevent bed bugs.
Prevention is one of the best forms of pest control. To prevent bed bugs:
- Check furniture and luggage before bringing it into your home, especially furniture from storage or when bringing luggage in after a vacation.
- Use a protective cover for your mattress. Bed bugs tend to hide in cracks and folds in materials. With a protective cover on the mattress, they are less likely to infest your bed.
- Declutter and clean your home often; messes are great hiding places for pests of all kinds.
- Install door sweeps, seal cracks around your foundation, and make it nearly impossible for bed bugs, and other pests, to enter your home.
Here are some signs of bed bugs to watch for:
- Small blood stains on sheets and dark, rust-colored spots on fabrics and walls are signs that bed bugs may be an unwanted guest in your home.
- Shed bed bug skins and fecal matter are clear signs that bed bugs may be in your home.
- Live bed bugs will be often found in the seams of mattresses and furniture. Sometimes, they can be found in your closets on hanging clothes or in carpets.
- A musty odor can indicate a bed bug infestation.
If you think you have bed bugs in your home, here is how to identify bed bug bites:
- The bites will look like small mosquito bites, often in a line or a zig-zag.
- Bed bug bites are painless but itchy.
- Most likely the bites will be on places more likely to be exposed, like your face, neck, hands, or feet.