Over the past several years, bed bug infestations have started to make a comeback in the US and abroad, leaving many homeowners worried about the potential dangers they bring with them.These small, flat insects are great at hiding in the most inconspicuous spots and can travel long distances with ease. So what are homeowners supposed to do to fight them off and how long can they survive without drinking blood?
Can Bed Bugs Die Without Blood?
Yes, bed bugs can die without blood but it does take a bit of time before they bite the dust instead. While the exact amount of time that bed bugs can survive without a meal is still up for debate, scientists and other researchers believe that they can survive at room temperature for about 2 to 3 months without blood. That means that if they traveled on luggage, they could possibly survive in a closet or garage and be brought into the home at a later time. It should also be noted that bed bugs are cold-blooded, which means their metabolism slows down in colder climates and they may be able to survive for up to a year without feeding.
What Causes an Infestation?
For most people, carrying bed bugs into the home is something that happens after a trip away. Because they are expert travelers, bed bugs are often found in hotels, on trains and in airplanes . They can easily hitch a ride in bags and luggage to make it from Point A to Point B, where they finally set up shop.
Another way that bed bugs make their mark on the home is with their interesting lifecycle. While an adult female only produces one egg each day, the eggs take about 10 days to hatch and another 5 to 6 weeks before they develop into an adult. That means that homeowners could be transporting eggs from one space to another without ever spotting an adult bed bug.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
While many homeowners may think that they can spray bed bugs away, unfortunately these tiny blood suckers are resistant to common over-the-counter solutions. Additionally, most pesticides that are still in use today are very similar to DDT, which bed bugs have also managed to build up a resistance to. Scientists are currently researching other possibilities that would allow homeowners to target and eliminate bed bugs on their own but it seems like that solution is still some time off.
They best way for homeowners to eliminate bed bugs from the home is to enlist the help of an experienced pest control technician. With newer methods of treatment, like extreme heat exposure and the help of a trained exterminator, it is possible to eradicate bed bugs from the home. When using extreme heat to kill off any bed bugs or eggs that may be waiting dormant in the home, it is possible to save precious items and return the home to peace.
Fight Bed Bugs the Smart Way
While it can be difficult to eliminate bed bugs without the help of a professional, homeowners can try to prevent them from entering the home altogether. As a rule of thumb, homeowners should always search hotels rooms for bed bugs (and alert staff of any sightings), store luggage outside of the home in a cool space and double check for bed bugs when returning from a trip! If they do somehow make it inside, remember that bed bugs can die without blood but that can take time. So the best option for eradicating bed bugs is to enlist the help of the professionals.