How to Check for Bed Bugs

As their name suggests Bed Bugs are mainly found in beds. They can infest various areas, including furniture, clothing, and even cracks in walls. So if you are doubting that your bed is infested with Bed Bugs but don’t have any idea about how to check for bed bugs, this article is going to help you.

Bed bugs are small parasite insects that belong to the family Cimicidae. They feed on human blood as a source of nourishment.

Bed bugs are often associated with unsanitary conditions but they can infest clean environments as well.

They can have both physical and psychological effects on human health.

Their stealthy behavior and rapid reproduction make them difficult to stop from multiplying but by taking preventive measures and addressing infestations, you can mitigate the risks they pose.

Check for Bed bugs

Visual Signs of Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are small, flat, reddish-brown insects that are about the size of an apple seed when fully grown.

They are expert hiders and often come out at night to suck on the blood of sleeping humans.

To detect bed bug infestations, it’s important to be familiar with their visual signs.

Here’s what you should look for.

  • Live Bed Bugs: Adult bed bugs are visible with the naked eye. They have an oval-shaped body with six legs and two antennae. Bed bugs are typically reddish-brown but they can be darker and more elongated after feeding. Look for them in the seams and crevices of mattresses, box springs, and other furniture.
  • Tiny Eggs: Bed bug eggs are tiny pearly-white ovals shaped and about the size of a pinhead. They are often laid in clusters and can be found in cracks, crevices, and hidden corners. Bed bug eggs are resistant to many common pesticides which makes it difficult to remove them without proper preventive measures.
  • Shed Exoskeletons: As bed bugs grow, they shed their exoskeletons in a process called molting. These discarded exoskeletons are translucent and can be found near their hiding places. Spotting these shells is a strong indication of an active infestation.
  • Fecal Spots: Bed bugs leave behind dark, rust-colored fecal spots that resemble tiny ink stains. These spots are often found on sheets, mattress seams, and around hiding spots.
  • Blood Stains: If you wake up with small, red, itchy bites on your skin, it could be a sign of bed bugs. The bugs often bite in a linear or clustered pattern and if you squish them while sleeping, you might find small blood stains on your bedding.

Conducting a Bed Bug Inspection

Conducting a thorough inspection for bed bugs is a proactive step in detecting and addressing infestations early.

Bed bugs are skilled at hiding in cracks, crevices, and other inconspicuous areas, so a careful examination is essential.

Here’s a step-by-step procedure.

  • Gather Tools: Before you begin, gather the necessary tools such as a flashlight, magnifying glass, and a credit card or similar thin object to help lift and inspect potential hiding spots.
  • Start with the Bed: Begin your inspection by closely examining your bed. Remove the bedding, pillows, and mattress cover. Check the seams, folds, and tufts of the mattress. Pay special attention to any dark spots, shed exoskeletons, or live bugs.
  • Inspect Bedding and Furniture: Carefully examine the bedsheets, pillowcases, and blankets. Look for signs of blood stains or crushed bugs. Move on to upholstered furniture as couches and chairs and check seams, folds, and any other hidden areas.
  • Examine Cracks and Crevices: Bed bugs are experts at squeezing into tiny cracks and crevices. Inspect baseboards, electrical outlets, picture frames, and any cracks or gaps in walls or furniture. Use a flashlight and magnifying glass to get a close look.
  • Check Other Hiding Spots: Bed bugs can hide in a variety of places. Look inside alarm clocks, behind loose wallpaper, under carpets, and even behind wall-mounted decorations. Don’t overlook any potential hiding spot.
  • Inspect Wooden Furniture: Thoroughly check dressers, nightstands, and any other wooden items. Pay attention to joints, seams, and corners.
  • Investigate Electronics: Electronics with small openings such as laptops and gaming consoles can provide hiding spots for bed bugs. Carefully inspect these items as well.
  • Focus on Adjacent Areas: Bed bugs can spread beyond the bedroom. Inspect adjacent rooms including living rooms, guest rooms, and even laundry.

Other Areas to Inspect:

Checking other potential hiding spots beyond the typical areas like mattresses and furniture is essential for effectively identifying and addressing a bed bug infestation.

Thoroughly inspecting less-obvious areas is crucial to detect bed bugs early. Start by examining baseboards, moldings, and electrical outlets, where bed bugs can hide into tiny gaps.

Be sure to peel back loose wallpaper and lift carpets or rugs to check underneath. Don’t forget to inspect items like books, luggage, and laundry hampers, which can also provide hiding spots.

What to Do If You Find Bed Bugs:

When bed bugs are discovered, it’s crucial to take appropriate steps to address the situation promptly and effectively. First and foremost,don’t panic and remain calm!

Collect evidence of the infestation which could include photographs or physical samples for proper identification.

Immediately isolate any infested items such as bedding or clothing by sealing them in plastic bags to prevent the bugs from spreading further.

Wash and dry these items on high heat settings to remove the bugs and their eggs.

After dealing with infested items, thoroughly vacuum the affected areas like mattresses, furniture, and carpets using a vacuum with a disposable bag.

Dispose of the vacuum bag in a tightly sealed plastic bag to prevent any captured bugs from escaping.

Consider using a crevice tool to reach into cracks and crevices where bed bugs may be hiding. It’s advisable to consult with a pest control professional at this point if the infestation is extensive.

Professionals have the expertise and tools to effectively treat the infestation and prevent its recurrence.

Preventing Bed Bug Infestations:

By adopting certain practices and making your living environment less conducive to bed bugs, you can significantly reduce the risk of an infestation.

One fundamental step is to maintain a regular cleaning routine. Vacuuming and cleaning your home thoroughly and frequently can help eliminate potential hiding spots and remove bed bug eggs.

Focus on areas where bed bugs might hide, such as cracks, crevices, and seams.

Another effective preventive measure is encasing mattresses and box springs in specially designed bed bug-proof covers.

These covers create a barrier that prevents bed bugs from entering or escaping. Also reduce clutter in your living space that minimizes potential hiding spots and makes it easier to identify.

Taking care when acquiring used furniture or items is also important. Inspect secondhand items thoroughly before bringing them into your home. If you’ve recently traveled, be vigilant about inspecting your luggage and belongings before bringing them inside.

Sealing cracks and crevices in walls, floors, and furniture can help prevent bed bugs from entering your home in the first place.

By creating physical barriers and eliminating entry points, you make it more difficult for bed bugs to infest your living space.


By following this step-by-step guide to checking for bed bugs, you can stay proactive in protecting your home and ensuring a peaceful sleep environment. Early detection helps you to take swift action and prevent these unwelcome pests from disturbing your life.

About the author

We are a team of experts who have helped many people in different cities in the United States to get rid of termites and other harmful pests.

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