Traveler tip: Check for bed bugs

Traveling offers us the opportunity to see other places and experience different cultures. When traveling, however, we expose ourselves to many things; some of which are damaging or disadvantageous. For example, we can come in contact with bed bugs when we stay in hotels, resorts, or maybe time-share villas or apartments. And we don’t want bed bugs near us. Not only do these insects bite, but we can also bring them home with us; and it’s not fun to live in a home infested with these bugs. So, how can we avoid getting these unwelcome creatures?

There are a few things that we can do to make sure that we won’t be bothered by bed bugs. Here are a few ideas worth trying out.

Checking a Room or Place for Bed Bugs

When we’re not sleeping in our own bed or using our own pillows, it’s best to be extremely careful. It’s better to be safe than sorry, and we should protect ourselves from becoming victims of these miniature bloodsuckers. To help us check certain areas for these critters, it would be a good idea to travel with a flashlight and a magnifying glass. Check underneath mattresses and pillows, and observe for signs of the bugs inside linen folds, under beds, as well as inside cabinets or dressers. They can also hide underneath carpets or maybe they can be visible crawling on the floor. If furniture or sofas are covered, it will also be a good idea to open zippers and peek inside. Bed bugs can also be found inside wall clocks, under or inside photo or painting frames, inside electrical outlets, and other nooks and crannies.

Signs That a Place Has Bed Bugs

What Bed Bugs Look Like

The most obvious signs that a place may be teeming with bed bugs is if there are actually live bed bugs on floors, walls, furniture and other items. These pests closely resemble an apple seed – oval, brown, wingless, and flat. Well, they are flat when hungry. But these vampiric creatures could swell and get that red-brownish tinge after feeding, which means that they have just had a sip of our blood. Checking for nymphs and eggs, which look golden or translucent, is also a good idea.

Other Signs

When adult and active bed bugs are not observed, this is not a hundred percent assurance that a place is free from these pests. Bed bugs are nocturnal creatures, and this means that they only become active at night. So, if we do our checking during the day, we obviously won’t see any of these annoying bugs. In addition to this, bed bugs can last for several months without feeding. Hence, they can go in hiding for a long time before coming out for another meal. Because of these factors, it’s better to be observant of other things that indicate a bed bug infestation. First, these insects leave brown or black fecal matter, which actually look like pepper flakes. Second, bed bugs often shed their outer layer or skin. So, they also leave translucent gold or light brown skins all over an infested area. Third, there most likely are times when these bugs get themselves crushed. When they get crushed, this leaves brownish or reddish stains on surfaces or even linen.

About the author: Claire Trent writes for Affordable Pest Control, which serves the DC area, as well as Virginia and Maryland. It’s a reliable company that can take care of many types of pest problems, including rodent, termite, and bed bug problems.

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