Bed bugs are a somewhat mythical creature for many people, and wildly exaggerated claims about their behavior may have made it hard for you to understand bed bug truth and fiction. Clearing the following myths of any truth can help you better understand these annoying vermin.
Myth: Bed Bugs are Too Small to See
Fact: While bed bugs are pretty small, they are by no means invisible. Fully grown bed bugs are about 4-5 mm in length or about ¼ of an inch. In fact, they are about the size and shape of an apple seed. As a result, you should have no trouble seeing an infestation of bed bugs moving across your bed. That should make it easier for you to spot and treat the problem.
Myth: Bed Bugs Reproduce Very Quickly
Fact: The origination of this myth is understandable: after all, many people don't notice they have a bed bug infestation until there are thousands of them in their home. As a result, many people assume they must breed very quickly. That's not the case: bed bugs lay about one to five eggs a day or about 540 in a lifetime.
While that seems like a lot, compare it to the average queen bee, who can lay between 1,200 to 2,000 eggs per day. Suddenly, 540 per life seems like very little. Bed bug infestations become a problem so quickly because it takes only 21 days for a bed bug nymph to reach reproductive age.
Myth: Bed Bugs Only Happy in Dirty Homes
Fact: There's actually a margin of truth to this myth: bed bugs prefer to live cluttered areas. That's because it'll be easier for them to hide during the day while they sleep. However, bed bugs have no problem living in clutter-free, absolutely clean environments, just as long as there's a living creature around on which they can feed. In fact, bed bugs are often very common in regularly cleaned areas, such as hotel rooms, simply because they don't mind hitching a ride with guests to discover new feeding grounds.
Myth: Bed Bugs Can Spread Dangerous Diseases
Fact: People that read about the diseases spread by mosquito and tick bites naturally assume that the bite of a bed bug carries the same disease-ridden potential. However, studies have shown that there's almost no evidence that bed bugs actually spread any of the diseases they carry, such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and even HIV. But that doesn't mean that scientists have ruled out the possibility of it ever occurring: they've just never seen it happen.
Now that you have a stronger understanding of the truths surrounding your bed bug infestation, you can take the proper measures to counter it. And if your home is infested with these pests, call a professional bed bug treatment expert as soon as possible.