What Attracts Bed Bugs? “Sleep tight. Don’t let the bed bugs bite.” is a well-known expression. But what attracts bed bugs? When you were young, bed bugs might have sounded like a scary creature in a silly bedtime story waiting under your bed to sneak up on you while you sleep. But don’t let that fool you, these horrible creatures are definitely real and they are just waiting for the right chance to strike.
Bed bugs are like vampires, out to get human blood and will creepily crawl into your bed when you are well asleep. These parasites are tiny, about five to seven millimeters in size. Just imagine an apple seed, tiny right? These are oval-shaped bugs that are known for their bite and causing itchy red bumps on your skin.
While you might think bed bugs are attracted to a dirty cluttered home, it is typically not the case. We have mentioned vampires earlier, just like them, bed bugs are most attracted to human blood. Now you might begin to wonder, what attracts bed bugs?
What are bed bugs?
Bed bugs have been with us for thousands of years. With pesticides, treatments, and other chemicals, you might have thought that we have finally gotten rid of them. However, they have found different ways to survive.
Bed bugs are small, reddish-brown, flat in shape, wingless parasites that like to prey on human blood. While they do not spread diseases, they can still cause other public health and economic issues.
Not like other insects, bed bugs are unable to fly or jump. So, they make up for that by being a fast crawler.
They also cannot live on their hosts to be fully satisfied like ticks. That is why they need to find another way to feed on their hosts, they wait for the perfect opportunity when they are asleep. That is how they got their name, bed bugs.
When bed bugs are young, it will be trouble to try and spot them due to their pale color and smallness. But don’t worry, because of their diet, adults turn into a reddish-brown color, making them easier to spot.
Symptoms that you have bed bugs in your home
If your home has a bed bug infestation, you start getting itchy and uncomfortable rashes on your body. While it may be hard to distinguish bed bugs bites from other insect bites or rash, they usually are:
- incredibly itchy
- placed in a rough line or forming a cluster
- red, usually with a darker red spot in the middle of the bite
- located on your face, neck, arms, and hands
But what attracts bed bugs? Is there anything you can do to avoid them?
What attracts bed bugs?
As mentioned above, bed bugs are initially attracted to us, humans. More specifically, human blood. They are notorious hitchhikers and the worst uninvited houseguests you can ever get. They sneak into your place and hide until they are ready to feast, ON YOU.
Since humans are their main source of food, it is not surprising that you can find bed bugs infestation all over the world. While others think that you can only get bed bugs from motels and hotels, the truth is, they can appear almost anywhere. Here are other places where bed bugs can be found:
- Educational institutions
- Police and fire stations
- Nursing homes
- Vehicles, especially public transportations like buses, trains, taxis, and cruise ships
- Federal buildings
- Retailer and other commercial facilities
Now, what is the common thing all these places have, they have a heavy volume of foot traffic? Not because they are unclean and untidy, but because different people from different walks of life come and go there.
Whenever you encounter a bed bug-infested place, you might unknowingly bring them to your own home. This could cause an infestation, regardless of how neat and tidy your place is.
Even worse, bed bugs might come to you. Here are some factors that attract bed bugs, aside from your precious blood.
Again, bed bugs are attracted to human beings, specifically their blood. But why? It’s because we produce carbon dioxide. These pesky little parasites tend to settle down in places that have a higher concentration of carbon dioxide. This is also why bed bugs like to feast on you when you are fast asleep. You usually have minimal movements which means you have trapped carbon dioxide surrounding you like a cloud.
The common misconception is that bed bugs are attracted to dirty places, they are not. They love the warmth of our bodies instead. While this may sound sweet, believe me, it’s not when we are talking about bed bugs. Humans produce heat and warmth, so bedtime sounds like a gold mine of warmth for bed bugs.
This is the reason why the surroundings of our bed and our headboards have the most possibility of being bed bugs infested than any other place in the room.
Dark Bed Sheets
Bed bugs love two things, blood and darkness. They thrive on the darkness. Why? because it reminds them of their goal, darkness, and blood. So, better steer clear from red or black bed sheets.
When there is no human host to feed upon, bed bugs like to scour your room, searching for soiled dirty laundry. They can use it as a hive and can be the starting point of a bed bug’s journey to conquering your whole room. As a matter of fact, they love the smell of your dirty laundry.
How to prevent bed bugs from attacking my home?
No one deserves to be disturbed by bed bugs bite in their sleep. Preventing a bed bug infestation is easier than having to get rid of them. Here are some tips you should follow to make sure bed bugs are not attracted to your bedroom, or anywhere in your home.
- Make sure you have a well-ventilated room at home, especially your bedroom.
- Avoid placing plants inside your room since it can mess with the carbon dioxide and oxygen levels.
- When you sleep, cover your exposed skin with a blanket or a quilt to avoid being the instant target.
- Wash and dry your bed sheets, blankets, and pillowcases at high temperatures.
- Use light colors to brighten up your room and minimize attracting those pesky bugs.
- Store your dirty laundry in a sealed plastic bag when you are on a vacation to avoid introducing them to your home. Make sure you wash it diligently.
Products that can help get rid of bed bugs
Nix Lice & Bed Bug Killing Spray for Home, Bedding & Furniture
Eco Pest Supply Bed Bug Blocker
Ortho Bed Bug & Flea Killer
Catchmaster Slider Bed Bug Trap & Insect Monitor, Detector, & Interceptor
Harris Bed Bug Traps for Early Detection & Monitoring