Bed bugs are a major problem for Canadians, and the problem shows no signs of getting better any time soon. Though bed bugs are a common problem, there are a lot of myths and misinformation being spread about them, and not everything you've heard about bed bug bites is true. Here are three myths about bed bug bites that you shouldn't believe.
Bed bugs only bite in the middle of the night
Bed bugs are nocturnal; this means that they're most active during the night. Many people get bitten while they're sleeping at night, but this doesn't mean that they'll never feed during the daylight hours. Bed bugs are opportunistic feeders, and if they're hungry, they'll search for food (your blood), no matter what time of day it is. For example, if you work the night shift and sleep during the day, your bed bugs will have no choice but to feed on you during the day.
Everyone reacts to bed bug bites
It's a common misconception that everyone reacts to bed bug bites. While the red, itchy bites in a "breakfast, lunch, dinner" formation are well known, that doesn't happen to everyone. You can't assume that you don't have a bed bug infestation just because you don't have any bites.
A study by the University of Kentucky conducted a survey of 474 people with confirmed bed bug infestations to see how many of them didn't react to bed bug bites. The study found that only 70% of the people said that they'd had a reaction to bed bug bites, while the other 30% suffered from no symptoms. People over 65 years old are more likely to not have a reaction to the bites, according to the study.
Bed bug bites can give you diseases
Other types of household pests, like cockroaches, can spread diseases to people, so it seems like common sense that bed bugs would also spread diseases. Fortunately, this myth isn't true. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, bed bugs don't spread any diseases and aren't a hazard to your health. The only medical hazard associated with bed bug bites is a skin infection caused by excessive itching, so if you have bites, make sure to wash your hands before you scratch them.
Bed bugs are a common problem, and unfortunately, so is misinformation about their bites. Bed bugs don't just bite at night, their bites don't cause reactions in everyone, and they don't spread any diseases.