Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Mysterious Bed Bug Bites At Night

We have recently started a new "Bugs Help Line" to answer specific questions from our visitors. For instructions on how to submit your own questions about home and garden pests click here.

This question about possible bed bug bites was recently submitted:

Question:

My name is Tiffani and I think I may have bed bugs but I'm not sure because I have all the bites and my 2 year old daughter who sleeps with me most nights has not been bitten once. Yet I wake up with new bites everyday. I have not yet seen a bed bug but I have not had the chance to really search yet. I want to know if it's possible that we have bed bugs if only one person who sleeps in the room is being bitten? Also thank you for your website it was very helpful.

Answer:

Tiffani,

The
first thing to do is to thoroughly check your bed and bed side furniture for bed bugs and/or dropping. Left up the mattress and check any folds or seams for reddish-brown bugs or their black, greasy droppings. Also check nearby tables, the bed frame, and so forth. Here's a drawing of what bed bug bites and bed bug hiding places look like.

If your search fails to turn up evidence of bed bugs then the bites are probably caused by something else. I think it is unlikely that you alone would be bitten and not your daughter sleeping in the same bed but nothing is impossible **.

** A commenter has pointed out that not everyone reacts in the same way to the allergen in bed bug bites. Just as people differ in how they react to mosquito bites (medically very similar), some people get a large, itchy swelling while others hardly react at all. So, the absence of a "bite mark" does not always guarantee that no bite has occurred.

If bed bugs are not the cause take a look at this list of other possible causes of mysterious bug bites.

If you do find bed bugs use the cleaning suggestions in the page cited above to get rid of them. Usually a thorough cleaning and a light dusting of insecticidal dust of the hiding places is enough.

1 comment:

anthony482 said...

It might be folliculitis and not bugs at all I recently had this and I was convinced it was 'invisible bugs' turned out to only be infected hair follicles ! Check w your dermatologist