Myth – You are unable to see bed bugs with the naked eye
Fact – You should be able to see all stages of the bed bug life cycle from eggs to adults
Myth – Bed bugs only live in dirty homes
Fact – The only thing bed bugs look for when picking a place to call home is a readily available meal. Having a cluttered home does give bed bugs more hiding places, however.
Myth – You can get diseases from bed bugs
Fact – Numerous studies have shown that bed bugs DO NOT spread diseases
Myth – Bed bugs won’t come out to feed if there is light in the room
Fact – Bed bugs prefer darkness, but keeping the lights on will not stop them from coming out to feed.
Myth – Pesticide treatments alone easily treat bed bug infestations
Fact – Pesticides are usually ineffective against bed bugs due to drug resistance and the method of transfer. Bed bug eradication requires an attentive effort in order for treatments to be successful. Heat is the only method that kills all bed bug life cycles. Reducing clutter, adding bug proof mattress covers, using bug detection devices, and washing and drying all linens in hot water and drying for at least 20 minutes in the dryer are some of the self-measures people should take along with bed bug heat treatments.
Myth – Bed bugs can jump or fly
Fact – Bed bugs neither jump nor fly. They are fairly quick runners, however. Bed bugs’ legs have little grippers that help them stick to surfaces. They have a hard time climbing on any slick surface.
Myth – Bed bugs will die without a meal, so you can leave your home for a few days and the problem will take care of itself
Fact – Bed bugs have been found to be alive up to 18 months without a blood meal!! This is the extreme in time, but it is not unrealistic to find live bed bugs in furniture or items that have not been in use by people for a year!! When bed bugs lack a readily available food source, they can go into what is called diapause. This helps the bugs shut down and conserve energy while waiting for a blood meal to become available.
Myth – Bites on the arms or trunk are sure signs of bed bugs
Fact – Peoples’ reaction to bed bugs bites can range from no reaction at all, to a severe allergic reaction. Bites in and of themselves are not indicative of a bed bug infestation.