If you suspect that your home has been invaded by bed bugs, here’s how to perform a quick visual inspection of your own mattress. Knowing how to check for bed bugs can save you time and money (by catching an infestation early) and give you a better understanding of how severe the infestation may be.
Signs to Look for When Checking Your Mattress for Bed Bugs
- Live bed bugs
- Red or rust-colored blood stains
- Dark-colored specks or smears from bed bug excrement
- Tiny, pale eggs or eggshells
- Hollow, translucent shell casings
- Musty odors
How to Check Your Mattress for Bed Bugs
Carefully inspect your sheets, blankets, comforters, and pillowcases. Look for any markings that might resemble blood spots or fecal stains left by bed bugs after a nighttime meal. Check for these stains around the top of the mattress as well as along the seams.
Pull your mattress away from the wall. Doing this helps expose any bed bugs hiding between the mattress and the wall. It also gives you more room to perform your inspection.
Even if there aren’t any visible blood stains or fecal markings on the sheets, you should still check the mattress underneath. Carefully remove all the bedding. In the event there are bed bugs still hiding in your sheets, avoid shaking them so that the bed bugs don’t get thrown around your bedroom.
Place the sheets in plastic garbage bags or load them directly into a washing machine. Dry them at a high temperature for at least 30 minutes to make sure that all bed bugs are killed.
Check along the folds and seams of the mattress. We recommend wearing gloves to protect your hands while doing so. You can also run a card along the seams to push out any bed bugs, eggs, or skin casings that are wedged deeper inside the cracks.
After you’ve inspected the top of the mattress, flip it over and lean it against a wall to get a view of the underside. You can inspect the same areas as you did on the top.
When the mattress has been moved off the bed frame, take this time to inspect your box spring if you have one. Check for spotting along the folds and seams. You can also flip the box spring over as bed bugs can also be found crawling around the dust cover on the bottom of the box spring.
Lastly, look around the bed frame. Bed bugs can fit their tiny bodies inside cracks and crevices, as well as underneath the frame. They can sometimes even be found hiding inside screw holes.
Bed Bug Canine Inspections
If you haven’t been successful in finding the bed bugs that have been biting you at night, consider getting a canine bed bug inspection. Bed bug sniffing dogs are specially-trained to pinpoint the location of bed bugs as well as their casings, eggs, and other signs that the human eye may miss.
During a canine inspection, the dog is guided by an experienced handler to go through each room and sniff out bed bug hiding spots. These dogs are able to locate even a single live bed bug or egg with 96% accuracy. If the dog finds something, it sends its handler a signal and the handler will perform a visual inspection for confirmation.
Bed bug dogs and their handlers go through a rigorous certification process to ensure they you receive reliable and accurate results.
If you need help with bed bugs, MMPC has you covered. We offer canine bed bug inspection services in New York City and the surrounding areas, as well as other eco-friendly pest control services.
Contact us today if you have questions regarding bed bug inspections, treatment, or prevention.