Bed bugs are known to be very annoying pests. Not only do they infest residences, but these bloodsucking insects are actually found almost anywhere – in expensive hotels, motels, travel inns, dorms, apartments, and even offices. Many experts say that the reemergence of the bed bug problem is largely due to modern citizens’ lifestyles. Domestic and international travel, for instance, is easier today, and due to this, more individuals take trips for personal or business reasons. Since bed bugs can readily hide in clothes or luggage, they also get a free ride almost anywhere. Once these minute bugs reach their place of destination, they begin to build new colonies. So, it’s actually easier to get a bed bug infestation today than a couple of years ago.
Because bed bugs are notorious bloodsuckers, many are worried about potential health dangers when bitten by these insects. So, can these tiny creatures transmit microorganisms that can threaten lives? Below are some health concerns about bed bugs.
1. Many people are scared of having bed bugs around because they think that these pests can transmit viruses, bacteria or parasites that cause life-threatening diseases. Some studies confirm that bed bugs can carry insidious organisms, such as the dreaded MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) superbug. However, these reports cannot prove yet if the bugs can actually pass on infectious organisms to humans.
2. The bite of the bed bug can produce rashes. Having skin rashes is uncomfortable, and as the skin becomes more inflamed, the irritation can get infected. Also, some people have very sensitive skin, and it may take more time for their skin to get back to their normal condition. This means that they may have to cope with a less than perfect skin texture for a while.
3. Other people also react very badly to bed bug bites. They are allergic to the chemical that the bug injects into the bloodstream in order to stop blood coagulation so that the insect can leisurely feed. A severe allergic reaction is known as anaphylaxis, which is typically characterized by breathing difficulty, generalized swelling, palpitations and rapid onset of hypotension. When a person exhibits these symptoms, he must be taken to a hospital as soon as possible because he could die without emergency medical intervention.
4. The presence of bed bugs also affect a person’s psychological or mental health. How so? During or after being infested, some individuals develop new habits or traits. For instance, Joe might no longer want to invite his friends over for fear of getting bed bugs from one of them. Or Jane might develop obsessive-compulsive characteristics because she’s become too afraid of bed bugs. So, instead of just vacuuming once a week like she always does, she now vacuums three times a day, plus she always feels like bugs are crawling on her skin. When the psychological impact of a bed bug infestation hamper an individual from performing his (or her) usual daily tasks, then he has to see a psychologist or psychiatrist for treatment.
All in all, bed bugs aren’t just a nuisance. They also cause a number of physical and psychological problems. Therefore, once you suspect a bed bug infestation, fix the pest problem right away.