Are Bed Bug Bites Dangerous?

a close-up image of a bed bug on light-colored fabric

Worried About Bed Bugs in the Pacific Northwest?

Bed bugs can be difficult to get rid of without a professional, and they’re becoming more and more common in homes and apartment buildings. But are they more than just annoying? Are bed bugs dangerous?

The simple answer is no, bed bugs are not dangerous. There are a lot of misconceptions about bed bugs, and PURCOR is here to help you understand exactly what bed bugs mean for you and your family.

The Dangers of Bed Bug Bites

While there has been a marked increase in bed bugs since the 1980s, bed bugs are not the health scare that some pest control companies claim they are.

According to Harold Harlan, an entomologist who has studied bed bugs for years, bed bugs can carry up to 28 different diseases–but there is no documentation that bed bugs are able to transfer these pathogens to humans. The CDC (Center for Disease Control) agrees: it does not consider bed bugs to be dangerous.

Chagas Disease and Bed Bugs

Perhaps the largest misconception is based on a study from New Mexico University. Researchers discovered that bed bugs can harbor Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite that causes Chagas disease, for as long as 97 days. When taken out of context, this can sound like evidence that bed bugs are dangerous. However, no study has been conducted on whether or not the bed bugs can transfer this parasite to humans, or cause Chagas disease in humans.

Are Bed Bug Bites Harmful In Any Way?

Bed bugs are not a serious medical threat at this current time in the United States for most people. Reactions to bed bug bites vary depending on the individual. Some people may not experience any symptoms as a result of a bed bug bite, while others may be greatly bothered or have a delayed reaction. Their bites can cause itchiness, inflammation, burning, and discomfort.

Common reactions appear as a raised, reddened welt similar to a mosquito bite. Often times, bites will be found on areas of exposed skin most common areas are head, neck, arms and shoulders since these areas are typically exposed while we sleep. Often there will be rows of 3 or 4 welts in a row in one of these areas of the body that will be extremely itchy.

If I Have Bites, Do I Have a Bed Bug Infestation?

A bed bug infestation cannot be determined by bites on your person alone. Bug bites can indicate the presence of bed bugs, but a pest professional is needed to truly diagnose a bed bug infestation.

Bed bugs can resist most extermination methods. Full extermination can be challenging without the assistance of a pest professional who understands pest management techniques. Hiring an experienced and certified bed bug pest control company can mean the difference between complete eradication, or continued infestation.

If you need help getting rid of your bed bugs, contact PURCOR today. We’re always here for you!

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