Feeling itchy at night and worried you might have bed bugs? Unless you have a large infestation, it's often difficult to find out if you have bed bugs because they're typically nocturnal and prefer coming out when people are sleeping rather than awake. If you have yet to see a bug, but you're always itchy when you get into bed, and you've noticed some unusual bites on your body, you'll need to focus on inspecting the home and then getting help for any potential problem you have.
How to Properly Inspect the Home
When checking for bed bugs, you should have a flashlight and magnifying glass available. Even if you've googled pictures of bed bugs, those images are often magnified dozens of times to give people the best possible view of the bugs, but they're much smaller than most people realize. Remove the blankets, pillows, and bed sheets from your mattress and carefully look around the seams of the mattress, checking for live bugs, exoskeletons (bed bug skin), and black droppings. Flip the mattress over and then lift it and place it against the wall while inspecting the bed frame, box spring, and underneath the bed.
After performing your inspection, you may have spotted some evidence of bed bugs. If not, you can continue looking around the home. Although the name might give you the impression that these bugs are only found on beds, they tend to linger anywhere, including carpeted floors, couches, curtains, and more.
Bringing in the Professionals
Whether you've found evidence of bed bugs living in your home or not, you should bring in a pest control professional to inspect your home. If you haven't found evidence, the professional may be able to find live bugs or other common signs of their existence in areas where you weren't able to find anything. A professional who deals with bed bugs regularly has more of a trained eye for those kinds of things. Even if you've found a live bed bug on your own, the professional may still want to perform a complete inspection to find out how severe the infestation is before treating the home.
Getting rid of bed bugs isn't as easy as purchasing a pest control spray from your local home improvement store, spraying it around the home, and then calling it a day. Bed bugs have evolved over the past several decades and pesticides that once worked to eradicate them are no longer as effective. A professional could use a combination of treatments, including effective spray insecticides, powder insecticides, and heat/steam treatments to ensure they're eradicated.