The Effects of Bed Bugs on your Blood

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Huffington Post releases a new study examines the feeding patterns of bed bugs - and the impact they can have on humans' blood after several months.

The University of Florida conducted a study that shows bed bugs will have a bigger or smaller blood meal depending on when they last fed. Research also discovered that the production of bed bug eggs are linked to the amount of blood the bed bugs are able to consume the week prior.

"Longer and more frequent feedings increased egg production, which would allow a faster growth of bed bug populations," they wrote in the study. "The increase in bed bug populations obtained with more frequent and longer feedings can be the difference between a population that barely survives at a location and a thriving population."

Although bed bugs do not spread disease, they are psychologically threating, bed bug bites cause itchy and red bite marks and can be associated with potential blood loss. Search found bed bug populations that feed on infants and adult humans during 3-8 month duration can have a harmful effect on blood levels.

Bed Bug Identification:

  • Bed bugs are small brownish insects just under a ¼ inch long
  • Bed bugs are oval in shape, flat and about as wide as they are long
  • Immature bed bugs are much smaller, about 1 mm and lighter in color
  • Bed bug eggs are very small, about 1 mm in size and whitish in color. They are difficult to see what the naked eye.
  • After a blood meal, bed bugs will appear to be reddish in color.

Biology & Behavior:

  • Bed bugs are nocturnal creatures and come out at night to feed exclusively on blood.
  • Bed bugs are resilient and may live up to 12 months without a blood meal.
  • Bed bugs are not caused by poor sanitation or ones social status.
  • Bed bugs are not limited to the bedroom, but will disperse throughout a structure, traveling a great distance to obtain a blood meal.
  • Bed bugs like to hide in small cracks and crevices close to where humans rest and sleep. This includes, baseboards, upholstery, furniture crevices, carpet, wall hangings, night stands, floorboard cracks, behind loose wallpaper, light switches, door and window frames and other hidden places.
  • Bed bugs can be introduced into a structure via used furniture, on belongings or an individual who has a bed bug infestation.
  • Bed bugs like to travel, given their nickname the "hitchhiker." They will hide in suitcases, boxes, shoes to be near a food supply.

Thomas Pest Services is proud to be members of the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) and New York State Pest Management Association. Thomas Pest Services is licensed and trained in bed bug control and bed bug removal in Albany, Troy, Latham, Clifton Park, Glens Falls, Lake George and surrounding areas. To learn more about the effects of bed bugs, contact us by phone 1-877-518-2847,, twitter or facebook.

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