The honest answer is… there is no way to know for sure (so please don’t show them to me). A doctor cannot look at skin reactions and diagnose bed bugs. Some people react immediately (myself included) while others don’t see any visible signs for weeks. The degree of the reaction is different from person to person. When I get bit I itch like the devil. When others get bit, they may have a very mild reaction or no reaction at all. I have met husband and wives where they are both getting bit and one reacts and one does not. However, it is important to note that a severe reaction can result in anaphylactic shock.
Bed bug bite victims do see trends or patterns in their bites. The bites can often occur in groups of three (breakfast, lunch & dinner) or along a vein. Other than that, you are going to need good old fashion reasoning and a process of elimination.
Some questions to ask yourself…
- Have I traveled recently? Did I travel out of the country? Have I stayed in a hotel? Have I been on an airplane?
- Have I been outdoors recently? Could anything else have bitten me?
- Are all my pets on flea medication? If not, you may have fleas in your home and they will bite you too.
- Have I had house guests recently? Could they have brought something in?
- Do I have any other evidence of bed bugs (black feces stains, shed skins, etc)?
If you can’t work it out on your own, call me. We have a great “Peace of Mind” bed bug detection dog that helps many people determine if they do or do not have bed bugs in their home.
May the heat be with you!
Ashley, Atlanta Bed Bug Control Specialist