Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?

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Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?

Mosquitoes, ants, termites, roaches: none of them are fun pests to have in or around your home. Mosquitoes cause itchy bites, and termites will slowly eat away at your home until there’s practically nothing left. Still, though, we don’t usually wonder much about these home pests (apart from how to get rid of them once we know we have them). In other words, you wouldn’t typically ask yourself: where did these mosquitoes come from? After all, mosquitoes are pretty much everywhere, right?


The same isn’t true for bed bugs. For most of us, we can go our entire lives never having an encounter with a bed bug. We move from one house to another, travel long distances, stay with friends or family members, and sleep in dozens of different beds and rooms over the course of many years -- but we still never run across bed bugs. Until one day, suddenly, we’ve somehow got a bed bug infestation in our home.

How did this happen? Where exactly do bed bugs come from? How did they get into your home? Keep reading to find out.


What Are Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs are blood eating insects that feed off of humans in order to survive. They have six legs and a flat, broad, ovular body. After feeding, their body swells up and elongates somewhat. Bed bugs go through several life cycle stages. They start out as eggs which are less than 1 mm in length, and which typically look like miniature grains of rice. These eggs hatch into nymphs, ranging in size from 1 to 4 mm. Adults are approximately ¼” long.


Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?

Many people think of bed bugs as only coming from dirty, poorly maintained environments. As it turns out, this isn’t really the case. Bed bugs can be anywhere, including in a hotel room that looks clean and orderly to the naked eye. Unlike some insects, bed bugs aren’t drawn to decaying matter: they’re only drawn to food sources (which is to say, mammals such as humans).

Ticks and mosquitoes also feed off of human blood, but their habits are different. Mosquitoes are capable of flying to reach their food source, and ticks can latch onto their host in order to feed. Bed bugs, on the other hand, don’t have these sorts of advantages. As a result, they typically lie in wait until their food source is readily available -- hence their association with beds (where they can come out and feed at night while you’re asleep).

It’s common to find bed bugs in the following places:

  • Homes and apartments: Bed bugs take up residence in mattresses, linens, couches, and even drawers and dressers.
  • College dorms: As with homes and apartments, bed bugs can live in furniture and mattresses.
  • Hotels: Bed bugs are commonly associated with hotels, and it’s important to check your mattress before unpacking your things and settling in for the night.
  • Daycares: While it’s not common, bed bugs have also been known to infest daycares in certain situations.
  • Movie theatres, city buses, public places: Any public place with fabric and/or furniture is potentially a bed bug habitat.


How Do Bed Bugs Spread?

Simply put, bed bugs travel with the help of humans. If you have bed bugs in your home, that means that you or a guest brought them there. As a so-called “hitchhiking bug,” bed bugs will hitch a ride home with you or a visitor. When you stay in an infested hotel room, they can find their way into your suitcase and later spread throughout your home. A guest visiting your home after staying in a hotel can bring them in as well. Your children can do the same after staying over at a friend’s house. For that matter, you can even pick up bed bugs on your clothes or bag after taking public transit.

Once you’ve determined that you have a bed bug infestation, it’s time to take action. Home Pest Control can take care of your bed bug problem right away: click below to find out more.

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June 5, 2018

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