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How Do I Know if I Have Bed Bugs

Note: This guide is for those who suspect, but aren’t sure whether they have bed bugs in their home. If you know you have bed bugs, please refer to our guide on how to get rid of them here.

Bed bugs are some of the nastiest critters on earth. They’re responsible for a number of health issues, and can become a rampant infestation if left untreated. For that reason, it’s important to eliminate bed bugs sooner, rather than later. Obviously, the first step in stopping any bug infestation is to spot some common trouble signs early.

But what kind of marks do bed bugs leave to indicate their presence? In today’s article, we’re going to answer that question in order to help you stop your bed bug problem as soon as possible.

Health effects

One of the easiest ways to spot a bed bug infestation is to look for marks, rashes, and bites on your body. While you sleep, bed bugs may be crawling over your skin and leaving behind tell-tale signs of their presence. If you have developed a persistent itch, rash, or allergic symptoms, then your bed or couch may be infested with bed bugs.

Some of the most common places to get a bed bug rash are on your back, stomach, or neck area. Basically, any body part that comes into direct contact with the mattress or sheets will be more susceptible to bed bug bites, so it’s important to check those areas first.

However, in many cases, bed bugs leave no visible marks at all, which means that you need to rely on other methods in order to determine if you have bed bugs.

What do bed bugs look like?

Before we move on to the next steps, you need to know what bed bugs look like. Basically, they are tiny insects that are approximately 1/8th of an inch long. They have a bulbous rear end and a tiny head. Before feeding, they are small and brownish colored, but after feeding on your blood, they take on a more reddish hue, and become noticeably larger.

Fortunately, unlike some bug infestations, bed bugs can be seen by the human eye. While they are flat and tiny, you should be able to spot them when searching your house.

Visible marks on your bed

Bed bugs take root in your bed and other pieces of furniture. Check your bed thoroughly to figure out where the bugs are hiding. First, lift up your mattress and take all the sheets off of your bed. Then, check all of the seams and buttons for bed bugs. You will also want to check the box spring, the skirt of the bed, and all parts of the frame. Focus your efforts on tight, dark corners, as this is the prime place where bed bugs like to hide.

In addition, bed bugs leave behind noticeable traces of blood and feces as well. These are particularly noticeable on the sheets that you are lying on. Since they feed on your blood, it’s a little disturbing to see these tiny droplets on your sheets and pillow cases. However, this blood could indicate the presence of bed bugs.

And, just like any vermin, bed bugs leave behind traces of feces that will give away their presence. Bed bug feces appear as small black dots on sheets, pillows, and mattresses. However, if you have darker sheets, then these marks may be difficult to spot.


People who live in bed bug infested homes often complain about a sickly sweet odor in their bedroom. This is a result of the combination of blood and feces that bed bugs leave behind. Put simply, if you have a strange, persistent odor in your bedroom, it is rarely a good thing. If you suspect that bed bugs could be causing the problem, then you need to take further action.

Marks on the walls and other parts of your room

In some cases, bed bugs enter the house through a second-hand mattress. However, in most cases, they crawl into your room through cracks in the walls, or around electrical outlets and vents. For that reason, it’s important that you do a thorough check of all possible access points in your bedroom. Bed bugs are tiny, and can gain entry through even the smallest hole. If you spot black marks, or smell a distinctive odor in a certain area of your room, then bed bugs could be nearby.

In fact, those blood stains that you see on your sheets can even be found on your walls and surrounding furniture. So, while bed bugs could be crawling on your skin at night, they retreat to a more protective location during the day. Focus your attention on dark corners of your room, or areas behind walls where visible light cannot reach.


If you suspect that your house might have bed bugs, then it is in your best interest to look for any of these common trouble signs. With a little research and forward thinking, you can stop your bed bug problem before it becomes a full-fledged infestation. Read How To Get Rid of Bed Bugs Here.

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