You suspect you might have a bed bug infestation and now you’re wondering, “Where do bed bugs hide?” After all, you cannot solve the problem if you don’t know where to focus treatment.
These critters are a problem for many households and are more common than you might think. So how do you discover where bed bugs are hiding?
How do You Get Bed Bugs in the First Place?
It’s important to know how you get a bed bug infestation in the first place. The most common way bed bugs get in is by being brought in, often from other people’s homes or while staying at hotels when you travel.
Because bed bugs are great at hiding, they find their way into luggage and clothing. When you bring these items into your home, you also bring in some unwanted guests.
Keep in mind that any high-traffic place is an ideal hot spot for bed bugs because all they want is to be close to a source of food…you. So hotels, motels, resorts, any places that offer lodging and you can even pick them up by visiting friends or family members who have an infestation.
Hygiene is a non-issue because a bed bug infestation has nothing to do with cleanliness – they just want a food source.
And unfortunately, because these critters travel so well, they can be picked up in the even the most surprising of ways – backpacks, handbags, even laundry bags – and brought into your home. When traveling and staying with others or at hotels, very specific care should be taken when you return home, to avoid bringing bed bugs in.
Know What to Look For
If you suspect you might have been exposed to bed bugs, do your best to launder clothing and steam-clean luggage before bringing these items into your home. Clothes should be brought into your home and laundry room in sealed trash bags. Clothes should be placed into the DRYER FIRST, and tried on the hottest setting for an hour. The heat kills any bed bugs, allowing you to then safely wash your clothes and dry them normally.
Additionally, you’ll want to inspect bags and luggage away from carpeted areas so you stand a better chance at discovering bed bugs. We recommend clothes be removed from luggage outside your home, and placed in trash bags, as mentioned above.
Bed bugs are light or reddish brown and their bellies look translucent after recently feeding. They are wingless and fairly flat with oval bodies. Full size, they are only 4 to 5 millimeters long and 1 to 3 millimeters wide, about the size of an apple seed. Bed bugs are often confused with a number of other insects.
Being small and resilient, they can hide in just about any climate, just about anywhere, preferring to stay close to their food source – within 5 feet or so, but they do spread out.
To determine if you have a problem, you will want to look for cast skins, blood spots, eggs, nymphs, and adult bugs. However, the only confirmation of an infestation is live bugs, which can be difficult to find.
Where do Bed Bugs Hide?
Blood spots or seeing bugs is a big sign you could have an infestation on your hands. Bed bugs are like fleas and mice – if you see one, there are probably many more and it’s time to take action.
But where do bed bugs hide and where should you look? As mentioned before, bed bugs prefer to stick close to a food source, so the most likely place to find evidence of an infestation is on mattresses. Learn more on how to find bed bugs in your home.
But bed bugs can hide just about anywhere, so you’ll find them on bed frames, nearby furniture, base boards, and in cracks and crevices throughout the room.
If your living room is a high-traffic area, the problem may have spread to couches and other furniture there, too.
Where do bed bugs hide – a checklist:
- In seams of mattresses, chairs, couches
- Box springs
- Bed frame
- Under and in-between cushions
- Pet beds
- Curtain folds
- Door frames and hinges
- Furniture joints
- Cracks and crevices
- Walls, ceilings, and base boards
- Luggage and other bags
- Under rugs and carpets
The best way to check for bed bugs is to literally flip the furniture upside down, and use a high powered LED Flashlight to carefully scan all parts of the furniture. This is also applicable to doors frames, trim, electrical outlets, carpet, etc.
Once You Know Where to Find Bed Bugs, You Can Focus on Prevention and Treatment
Ideally, you have a “prevention mindset” and are aware that since bed bugs can be anywhere, prevention is an essential and on-going process.
Where do bed bugs hide? Just about anywhere they can. And now you know what to look for and where to look.
Be sure to check out these great articles for how to treat a bed bug problem: