Did you know that over nine in 10 homes in the U.S. have a bed bug infestation? 89% of apartments and condominiums, as well as seven in 10 hotels and motels, also have the same problem!
That’s how big the bed bug issue is in the U.S., and it’s something that everyone should be aware of.
Granted, it’s generally known that bed bug diseases aren’t transmittable. However, these blood-sucking insects aren’t only a nuisance, but they also pose health risks. The insects themselves harbor over 40 different types of pathogens.
That should be enough to tell you that bed bugs can be dangerous. But what exactly are the negative health effects of bed bugs? Do they really not transmit diseases, or is there still a possibility?
We’ll answer all these questions in this ultimate guide about bed bugs, so be sure to keep reading!
Chagas Disease: One of the Possible Bed Bug Diseases
Researchers found that bed bugs can transmit a parasite known as Trypanosoma cruzi. It’s the same parasite found in the triatomine, or “kissing” bug. It’s also the culprit behind Chagas disease, a life-threatening illness.
Chagas disease is an inflammatory disease, resulting in either acute or chronic conditions. In some people, they can cause both. The symptoms themselves usually appear during the chronic stage of the condition.
Swelling at the affected area, rashes, fever, fatigue, and body pain are common signs. Other symptoms include swelling of the eyelids, headaches, nausea, and diarrhea.
Untreated Chagas disease can result in severe heart and digestive health problems. The thing is, the infection can take between 10 to 20 years to reach the chronic stage.
During this time, patients may already have an enlarged esophagus. This can cause digestive problems and difficulties in swallowing. There may also be an enlargement of the colon, as well as possible heart failure.
The main way to get this disease is through triatomine bugs. However, a new study from the Journal of Medical Entomology found that bed bugs can also carry the disease.
That’s why you shouldn’t ignore those red welts and itchy bumps on your skin. Especially if you stayed for a few days in a resort or hotel.
Wounds and Skin Infections from Constant Scratching
Bed bug bites, like mosquito bites, are itchy. The difference is, bed bug bites (and their itchiness) can last for a few days.
This can result in constant scratching, which can lead to open wounds. They may be small wounds, but bacteria are much smaller, so they can easily enter those openings on the skin. Left untreated, germs can settle on the wound and cause infection.
Plus, bed bugs often attack at night, so you may unconsciously scratch away at your skin while you’re asleep.
Bed bug bites are already itchy, but it’s even worse for people who may be allergic to insect bites. They may experience severe itching, inflammation, and redness. They may even develop blisters and hives after a bed bug attack.
Bed bug bites may also cause anaphylaxis in people with extreme allergy to insect bites. It’s very rare, but if it happens, it’s a medical emergency since it can lead to tightness in the throat. According to WebMD, two million people in the U.S. are allergic to insect stings, which may include bed bug bites.
A full-on bed bug problem can result in you waking up numerous times at night. After all, their constant feeding can also mean constant itching and scratching. The thought itself of sleeping in a bed full of bugs can also keep you up at night.
This can result in both physical and mental exhaustion. The more nights you lie awake, the more your “sleep debt” piles up. Ultimately, these bed bug attacks can lead to sleep deprivation.
Lack of sleep won’t only make you irritable and tired the following day. Sleep deprivation can also put you at a higher risk of accidents, such as car crashes. According to ScienceDaily, an estimated 7% of motor vehicle crashes in the U.S. are due to drowsy driving.
Sleeplessness can also impair your thinking and decision making. Moreover, lack of sleep can cause weight gain, obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.
We can go on and on about how lack of sleep can endanger your health, but you get the gist. The bottom line is, you shouldn’t ignore a bed bug infestation. Especially if the problem is right at home or in your apartment building.
Skyrocketing Stress Levels
As if being unable to sleep isn’t enough, having a bed bug problem can also add to your stress levels. This can arise from thinking about going to bed and getting attacked while you sleep. You may also develop a real fear for bed bugs, which can also be very stressful.
You may also feel stressed thinking about the health problems that bed bugs can bring. You may end up worried all day long that you can pick up diseases right at home. It may be even worse if you think about how your bed supposedly should give you comfort and rest.
Fight Bed Bugs and Their Source Now
As you can see, bed bug diseases are as real as the health complications they bring. Getting the treatment you need alone can cost you a lot of money. Don’t forget that all those sleepless nights can also cause you pain and suffering.
Moreover, getting bed bugs out of your home can be very expensive and time-consuming. In many cases, a single pest treatment won’t be enough, since bed bugs are so resilient. What’s worse is they’ve become resistant to pesticides.
That’s why you should seek legal help if your bed bug problem is another party’s fault. It’s possible that you can obtain compensation for your bed bug nightmares.
If you’ve been a victim of a bed bug infestation, get in touch with us ASAP. We can help determine if you have a case and help you with the process of obtaining compensation!