A bed bug bite takes between 7 and 10 days to appear on the skin.  They may or may not itch and they are usually quite small.  The often occur in a set of three, commonly referred to as “breakfast, lunch and dinner.”  Ew.

Like with poison ivy and poison oak, only allergic people will react to bed bug bites, but those reactions can range from small itchy spots to anaphylactic shock (very rare).

The skin of the hands, feet and face are more sensitive to bed bug bites and react more than other areas of the body.  Bed bug bites are also often misdiagnosed by doctors.

The itch of bed bug bites can be made worse by:

A warm bath
Chlorinated water from swimming

Bed bug bites start as little red bumps, easily mistaken for mosquito bites.  They are typically longer than mosquito bites.  The swelling from a bed bug bite can be up to 20 centimeters across if you have a strong reaction.  The bite eventually progresses to a blister not unlike what is seen in chicken pox.

Since bed bugs do not feed every day, your rash or series of bites might only occur sporadically.

Unfortunately, there are also psychological symptoms in a bed bug infestation.  Loss of sleep, anxiety and high levels of stress accompany these pests everywhere they go.

Luckily, bed bugs do not carry disease and the bites will go away on their own.  You can treat the itching topically as you would any other bug bite.

The most important thing to do is to eradicate the infestation as soon as it is discovered!

High heat has been proven to be the only eradication method effective in just one treatment.  It kills bed bugs at every stage of development—eggs through adults—and does not
contaminate a structure with powerful chemical insecticides, which require more than one treatment, bagging of food and moving out of the structure for an extended period.

Alliance Environmental Group is proud to offer ThermaPureHeat(r), which raises the temperature of an area, a room or an entire structure to over 150° to kill all insect pests in one treatment.  If you think you have bed bugs, please contact us!  Our services are available throughout California from offices in Azusa, Moorpark, Santa Clara, Aptos, San Diego, Palm Desert, and in January 2012 Anaheim!

Wendy Stackhouse is the Online Community Manager for Alliance Environmental Group and AirTek Indoor Air Solutions.  She welcomes your comments!  For more news and tips or to ask questions of our experts, Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!  For updates on indoor air challenges, Like us at AirTek on Facebook!