It is difficult to identify bed bugs just from their bites. In fact it is hard to recognize a bed bug bite from any other insect bite. You should look at the overall pattern and timing of bites and other common signs of bed bugs to confirm if you have a problem.
The good news is that bed bugs have not been shown to transmit any disease and their actual bites do not hurt. However, getting bites can still be very distressing and in some cases they can become sore and itchy and lead to a painful skin rash and potentially secondary infection.
Our bodies can react very differently to bed bug bites. Some people have no reaction at all, whilst others can have minor swelling and itching and even develop a rash.
Watch our short animated video about 3 things you need to know about bed bugs
Bed bug bites can occur anywhere on the body but are often close to blood vessels near the skins surface. Check for signs of bites on your:
Several bites tend to appear in a line or row along an exposed area, such as an arm or leg. A single bed bug may bite more than once in the same area, if disturbed whilst feeding. Bites found in different parts of the body can indicate being bitten by several different bed bugs.
Bites often occur at night when we are sleeping, but they can also occur if you are sat or resting for a sustained period of time. Bed bug bites are unlikely to wake the victim, as bed bugs inject an anaesthetic whilst drawing blood from the host (victim).
A small proportion of people can react very badly to their bites and develop a skin rash. The red spots which indicate the location of a bite, may become raised and very itchy over time. If this causes you distress or continues for a long time you should seek medical treatment. In general, most people will respond to a bed bug bite slightly worse than to a mosquito bite.
Worried about your bites?
At Rentokil, we can offer industry leading treatments to solve bed bug problems in your home or business.