Can bed bugs get in your hair? Bed bugs are small insects that feed on human blood. They live in cracks and crevices of beds, bed frames, headboards, dressers, etc. Bed bugs can be found near sleeping areas after both adults and nymphs have fed on a person’s body, leaving itchy bite marks behind. And bed bugs can get in your hair.
But let’s have a deeper look into it!
What Are Bed Bugs?
The size of a bed bug is anywhere from 1/4 to 1/8 inch long as an adult with the flat oval shape of an apple seed. Bedbugs are reddish-brown but will appear to be black when they are full of blood. An unfed adult female bedbug can lay up to 300 eggs during her lifetime, hatching within about 5-12 days, where they will feed on a human’s blood and pass through 5 nymph stages in 9-12 weeks before becoming an adult.
The life cycle of a bed bug is about ten months from start to finish. The best conditions for the insects are 70-degree weather with 90% humidity, making it hard to get rid of them when they seem to be gone because they usually come out at night while you sleep, and bites can go undetected for days or even weeks.
They feed silently on their hosts without being noticed until people start seeing raised welts on their skin which the bugs have bitten after they have left the host’s bedroom after a feeding session. After feeding, a bug returns to its harborage spot, where it needs a blood meal to fill its gut to survive.
Since the bugs do not like light, they will try and stay out of view as much as possible, making them hard to find when trying to clear an infestation. Bed bugs only need about 5-10 minutes to obtain a complete blood meal but can go without feeding for days if necessary. Once the bed bug has found a human host, it will feed 3-10 times each week or more, depending on how quickly it takes to obtain a full meal. One female bedbug can lay between 30-50 eggs in her lifetime, with one egg laid per day at average temperatures of 75 degrees Fahrenheit with an adult lifespan of 6 months under optimal conditions.
Can Bed Bugs Get in your Hair?
The answer is yes, but not all bedbugs can penetrate human hair. Bedbugs have bodies that are flat and long with an oval-shaped abdomen. Their heads fit perfectly under their wings when they rest, making it easy for them to hide away in tiny cracks during the day.
They need a host’s blood to reproduce and survive; some people think that you are safe from bedbugs if you do not sleep with anyone else or share your home with furry pets (e.g., cats, dogs). But there are other ways that these blood-sucking parasites can enter your home.
They can get into your hair if someone who has them on their body decides to rest against it (for example, on the shoulders or back). Anyone sitting or lying down somewhere where someone with bedbugs might have recently sat could catch them. There is another way that you can get bedbugs in your hair: if they fall out of someone’s clothing onto the floor and you walk by the same area after some time has passed, they could grab hold of yours.
Although this is an unusual method for catching these parasites, human head lice carry diseases and reproduce more quickly, so a disease-free bedbug would probably be the better choice.
Risk Factors of Getting Bed Bugs
In order to not have to deal with bedbugs, you need to watch out for certain risk factors. If you have any of these red flags, the chances are high that you will get these pests in your house one day:
- You often travel: Bedbugs can easily hitchhike from place to place just by sitting on somebody’s suitcase or clothes. Before going somewhere new, check yourself carefully before going back into your home.
- You like to visit the thrift store often or get your clothes there: If you want to save money by buying your clothes secondhand, then that’s great! Just beware of where you purchase them from, and if they seem too good to be true, then it probably is. When people travel frequently, the bedbugs like to follow. If someone has these pests in their luggage before leaving an apartment, these bugs can easily latch on to clothes and subsequently make their way into a thrift store where other people buy them for low prices without knowing what could happen later on.
- You live or work near restaurants: Bedbugs like high traffic areas such as hotels and restaurants because humans spend lots of time there with their luggage and clothes. The more people there are, the easier it is for these bugs to spread.
- You never check your apartment before moving in: If you want to avoid bringing bedbugs into your house, then always thoroughly check the place you’re about to move into. Bedbugs like dirt and dark areas where they can easily hide, such as under carpets, behind wallpaper, and plugged electrical sockets. If you see anything out of the ordinary, be sure to inform your landlord or broker immediately so that they can take care of it before letting another person rent the same apartment with risk factors for having bedbugs.
How to Prevent Bed Bug Infestation?
In order to prevent these pests from coming back, one must take action in the early stages of an infestation. In this stage, it is recommended to wash all clothing and bedding materials in hot water and place them in dryers with high heat for at least 30 minutes. Also, use a vacuum cleaner daily on carpets and rugs and even mattresses and couches (if possible).
Maintain cleanliness in your bedroom:
- Stay away from piles of dirty clothes.
- Make sure you remove clutter, such as shoes.
- Do not leave food around.
- Keep windows closed so they cannot enter your house again.
On the other hand, if you think that perhaps your infestation is too big, don’t panic. There are plenty of companies that specialize in pest control and can assist you with their services.
Most people believe that these bugs will not affect them; however, it is important to remember that bed bugs do not discriminate against age or social status. Their only purpose is to feed. It is always better to be safe than sorry.