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How To Identify Spider Bites Versus Bed Bug Bites

a bed bug crawling on someone

Most of the time, we do not see the bugs that bite us. In fact, we might not even know we have bites until long afterward. At this point, it is too late to catch the pest in action. What makes things more complicated is that many different kinds of bug bites look alike. If you do not know when you were bitten or where you were when it happened, it’s difficult to know what bug bit you.

Two of the most common offenders are spiders and bed bugs. These bug bites can make you itch in the same kind of way as flea or mosquito bites can. They can also make you itch like hives or chickenpox. Their bites might look similar, but there are some things you can look out for to help figure out what kind of pest bit you.

One sign to watch for is the pattern of bites and where they are on your body. Bed bugs usually leave behind several itchy bumps when they bite you. Bites may appear in a zigzag line or clusters of three to five bites, especially on the neck, arms, face or hands. The bites are generally red, with a darker color in the middle of the spots.

Spiders can also leave behind red, itchy bumps. But spiders usually only bite a person once or twice instead of multiple times like bed bugs. Additionally, spider bites are pretty rare and usually only happen if the spider is being handled or threatened. Because of this, you would likely be aware that it was a spider that bit you. This holds especially true if it was a more dangerous spider like a brown recluse or black widow. With these kinds of spiders, people often experience additional kinds of noticeable symptoms. Common symptoms include nausea, muscle cramps, difficulty breathing and painful blisters.

Beyond inspecting the site of a bug bite, it is also important to look for other signs that might indicate what kind of pest you are dealing with. Spiders most often take shelter and build webs in dark, protected areas like sheds, basements, attics and under furniture. Most species of spiders are easy to see with the naked eye, and they are distinguishable by their eight long legs.

On the other hand, bed bugs are tiny. These pests are usually just about the size of an apple seed. Their bodies are brown or reddish, depending on whether they have eaten recently. Because bed bugs are so small and they often hide when exposed, it can be difficult to spot the bugs themselves. Although these critters cannot jump or fly, they can crawl away very quickly. And, they hide in hard to see areas like the seams of upholstered furniture, under carpeting or near electrical outlets.

Signs of Bed Bugs

However, bed bugs leave behind a number of telltale signs, so it is often easiest to look for other indicators. Some common signs of a bed bug infestation include:

  • Reddish stains or what looks like specks of blood on the mattress, sheets, pillows or upholstered furniture.
  • Blackish specks, or bed bug poop, under couch cushions or on the bedding, headboard or mattress.
  • A musty, sweet smell, which could be the odor that bed bugs put out in order to communicate with each other.
  • Pale yellow exoskeletons on the mattress pad or on the mattress or upholstered furniture, which could be outer shells of bed bugs.
  • Tiny, white oval-shaped eggs in crevices or cracks, such as the seam of a mattress, bed frame, box spring or any other item or clutter around the bed.

When you are not sure what kinds of bugs you might have in your house, it is wise to contact a pest control professional. These specialists have the training and skills to figure out what kinds of critters are bugging you. Then, they can handle spider control, bed bug control and any kind of pest control needs that you might have.

a neatly made bed

Why Do Bed Bugs Only Bite Me?

Oftentimes, it might seem like bed bugs are biting only one person in a household. Sometimes, this is because just one room has bed bugs. But, what if you’re experiencing this while sleeping in the same room or same bed as someone else? When this is the case, it can seem like you are the only one getting attacked while your bedmate is escaping unscathed. While this is possible, the more likely scenario is that you and the other people in your household are having different reactions to the bites.

All our bodies are different. This, of course, has impacts on all sorts of different things, including our response to bug bites. For example, when a bed bug attacks, some people have immediate reactions. Meanwhile, others do not develop reactions until as long as two weeks later.

Also, some people react to these bites with some swelling and itching that goes away on its own. However, other people experience more severe effects, such as hives or blisters. In addition, with some people, bed bug bites can lead to even more severe conditions, such as skin infections.

If you think you might have a bed bug infestation or another pest problem in your home, it is wise to contact a pest control professional. A bed bug specialist will be able to get the bed bug problem under control, so your whole family can be comfortable.

two bed bugs next to a bed bug egg

How to Kill Bed Bug Eggs

These pests easily travel between areas and can be a pain to get rid of completely. While places with high turnover are more likely to experience bed bug infestations, these critters are sneaky. Bed bugs can get into any residence, no matter how clean or tidy the home is.

The best way to keep bed bugs away is to prevent them from entering your home in the first place. One preventative action you can try is to inspect any secondhand item for bed bugs before you bring it home.

Additionally, whenever you are traveling, inspect the bedding, mattress pad and mattress in your hotel for red specks. This could be a sign of an infestation. Additionally, avoid setting your suitcase on the floor, bed or other upholstered furniture. When you get home, unpack your bags on an uncarpeted floor, immediately wash any clothes you took with you and dry them on a high setting.

Nonetheless, no matter how many preventative measures you take, you might still experience an infestation. Bed bugs can sneak into your home by latching onto items like luggage, clothes, briefcases and backpacks when you are traveling or even onto furniture or boxes when you are moving.

Because bed bug infestations are so common, there are numerous ideas out there of how to get rid of them on your own. Some of the most common do it yourself methods include turning up the heat in your house, putting items in the freezer, throwing away bedding, vacuuming baseboards and using store-bought insecticide to try to get rid of bed bug eggs. Unfortunately, there are a number of downsides to attempting do-it-yourself methods of bed bug control.

Sadly, homeowners often end up wasting time and money trying to get rid of these pests. This is because many of the common DIY treatments typically have little effect on bed bugs. Furthermore, getting rid of bed bugs requires a very in-depth treatment process. Just throwing away the items that you know are infested like mattresses and bedding usually will not take care of the problem completely.

Bed bugs can hide in the smallest areas like the crevices of your bed frame or cracks in other bedroom furniture. They can quickly ruin the new mattresses and bedding you bring into your house, leading to a frustrating and costly problem. In addition, bed bugs can go long periods of time in between feedings and they may lie in wait for several months until a food source appears. This means that while a vacant apartment or home might seem like it is bug-free, it is possible that it actually has an infestation that does not become obvious until people move in.

The best way to get rid of bed bugs and their eggs is to hire a bed bug control expert. These professionals have the experience and specialized tools to take care of everything for you, so you and your family do not have to worry. They can save you and your family the stress and frustration by treating your pest infestation.

ABC Can Control Biting Pests on Your Property

Getting bitten by any bug while in the comfort of your own home is a worrisome experience. Instead of attempting do-it-yourself methods of pest control, contact ABC Home & Commercial Services. Our certified professionals will create a custom pest treatment plan to ensure that you don’t have to worry about any more bites.

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