How Long Do They Last?
Any bug bite can vary between annoying and life-threatening. Bed bug bites can cause no reaction, an itchy red welt, or a severe allergic reaction. The type of response depends on the individual.
But for those suffering from itchy, swollen red bites, the biggest question is, “How long will these darned bites last?” Let’s find out, and help you get rid of the itch!
How Long Do Bed Bug Bites Last?
Most bed bug bites recede and disappear within a week. This period can be lengthened if you are scratching, as your fingernails may tear skin and cause further problems. The best way to ensure that your bites go away soon is to avoid touching them as much as possible.
You can also help relieve some of the itchiness by:
- Applying a fresh, clean, damp cloth to your affected areas.
- Showering often and keeping as clean as possible.
- Taking an OTC anti-itch medication or using an antihistamine cream.
Just remember that the worst thing that you can do is agitate your bites. If you find that you’re scratching yourself while you sleep, it may be time to break out an extra pair of oven mitts and some duct tape.
How Long Do Bed Bug Bites Last on Humans?
Everyone in the world has a different set of biological instructions, which is why we don’t all have the same skin, eye, or hair color. Because our bodies differ so drastically, the onset of diseases and ailments also vary from person to person.
If you and a friend were to be bitten by bed bugs, at the same time, you might experience completely different reactions. You may not have any noticeable bite marks, inflamed skin, or itchiness. Or you might have an extreme allergic reaction that requires immediate medical help.
Most people suffer from a mild reaction. This reaction manifests itself as slightly itchy red dots or bumps, typically arranged in a group or a broken line. These bumps are usually found on the face, hands, or arms.
In most cases, you will notice these itchy red bumps within three or four days.
But sometimes it can take up to 14 days for bite marks to develop on a person’s skin, giving the bed bugs plenty of time to reproduce and chow down before you even begin to notice them!
Luckily, these bites fade away within a week to two weeks, if you keep them clean and do not scratch them. Individuals with sensitive skin may find that it takes slightly longer for their bites to vanish, but three weeks is the most extended amount of time it typically takes for bites to recede.
How Long Do Bed Bug Bites Last on Your Skin?
If left unscratched, bed bug bites should only last for a few weeks at most. But what happens if you do scratch?
You may end up with scars that linger for several years, especially if you do not begin treating the area quickly. In individuals with dehydrated skin, scarring can occur naturally as the bites heal.
There are plenty of homeopathic and medical treatments for bed bug bites, which may help accelerate the healing process. However, most medications only help lessen the pain and aggravation the bites cause, leaving you to heal naturally for one or two weeks.
Common areas where bed bugs tend to bite include the:
As you’ve probably noticed, these are all areas which are typically exposed while we sleep. Bed bugs will munch on any warm-blooded creature’s exposed skin.
If you sleep fully-clothed, you are more likely to find bites on your hands, face, and neck. If you sleep in the nude, you are more likely to find bites all over your body.
Do Bed Bugs Transmit Diseases?
Unlike fleas and mosquitoes, bed bugs are not known to spread diseases through their bites. The health risks associated with bed bugs mainly derive from the possibility of infection after being bitten.
Once the skin is broken, it is far more susceptible to bacteria or viruses which could lead to an infection. Therefore, it is vital to keep your bites clean and to avoid scratching them.
Also, bed bugs can produce a severe allergic reaction in some individuals. If you notice the following symptoms, you may be experiencing an allergic reaction to bed bug bites.
- Intense itching
- Swelling where bitten
- Blisters across skin
- Difficulty breathing
You must seek immediate medical attention if you are experiencing any of the above symptoms after being bitten by a bed bug. Doing so may save your life!
Though bed bugs do not transmit diseases, their bites can damage your immune system and leave you open to infection. Even if you are experiencing a mild reaction, be sure to keep your skin clean and refrain from scratching yourself. This method is the fastest way to get rid of those awful red bumps!
Frequently Asked Questions
A few signs of bed bug infestation are bloodstains on the sheets and mattresses, dark or rusty spots of bed bug excrement on sheets and mattresses, bedclothes, and walls. Bedbug fecal spots, eggshells, or shed skins in areas where bedbugs hide and an offensive, musty odor from the bugs’ scent glands are also signs of bed bug infestation.
The health risks associated with bugs are infection from scratches, allergic reaction to bites, sleep deprivation, and stress. Bed bug bites can be very itchy, leading to the strong urge to scratch it until the itch goes away. Sometimes, we unconsciously scratch them, leading to flesh wounds. On the other hand, some people might experience severe allergic reactions after being bitten, leading to life-threatening situations. The numerous bites, never-ending itch, and thought of crawling bugs around are bound to keep anyone up all night, leaving them exhausted physically and mentally the following day.
Bed bugs hide in a variety of places. Around the bed, they can be found near the piping, seams, and tags of the mattress and box spring and in cracks on the bed frame and headboard. Bed bugs can also be found in the seams of chairs and couches, between cushions, in the folds of curtains, in drawer joints or in electrical receptacles and appliances. You need to check under loose wallpaper, wall hangings, at the junction of the wall and the ceiling, and even in the head of a screw.
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