Just the thought of a bed bug can cause stress and panic for some people.  How can you tell if you have bed bugs?  How can you check to see if you have these unwanted pests crawling around your bed? Here are some Tips for Detecting Bed Bugs in your home.

Bites – How to Detect Bed Bugs

One of the most obvious tips for detecting bed bugs is to determine if you are getting bit at night when you sleep. Or are you getting bit after spending time on your couch? Do you frequently wake up with bites from an unknown source? If so, you may have a bed bug infestation. However, If you are only getting bitten once or twice but then there is a long gap between bites, most likely, you don’t have bed bugs or bed bug bites.  Most of the people we have encountered are repeatedly waking up with bites.  If this persists for several weeks to a month, there is a good chance that you have bed bugs and bed bug bites.

Everyone reacts differently to bed bug bites so it may be hard to identify the culprit. Some people, up to 30 percent of the population, don’t display any type of skin reaction after being bitten. And bed bug bites can look different on different people. We have talked to countless people who didn’t know the bed bugs were in other rooms in their home because they were not seeing bite evidence. So while this is one of the key tips for detecting bed bugs, it is not the only evidence to look for. Read on for more tips for detecting bed bugs.

tips for detecting bed bugs
Tips for detecting bed bugs: bed bug bites!


Another obvious hint in our tips for detecting bed bugs is that you may actually see bugs in your home.  But not every bug in your bed is a bed bug.  A bed bug starts off as tiny, milky-white eggs that resemble a grain of rice. But bed eggs are only a fraction of the size.  The can be challenging to see on a light fabric. However, they are usually clustered together and are easily visible on dark fabric, such as the underside of a box spring.

The babies, or nymphs, start off as clear and translucent.  Once they feed, they turn red in color. They can be very tiny and difficult to see with the naked eye. You may just be able to detect a movement of some kind and as you look closer, you will see that it is a bed bug!

 The bed bus has an interesting growth pattern. Each time a bug feeds, it molts.  It goes through 5 molting stages to reach adulthood.  Adult bed bugs are about a quarter of an inch in length and are dark reddish-brown in color. They do not have wings and do not jump.  They are fairly lazy and like to congregate in clusters, usually within 6 feet of the feeding area.  This is usually a bed or favorite recliner/couch.

Blood Stains

Even if you haven’t seen the bed bugs, you may notice random blood smears on your bed.  This is yet another one of the important tips for detecting bed bugs.

Blood smears tend to look like little lines of blood rather than droplets. These appear when you may accidentally roll over on a bug or have some blood smeared from the bite spot on your body. 

Tips for detecting bed bugs
Eggs, Blood Smears, and Fecal Stain help identify a bed bug infestation.

Fecal Stains

Another one of the great tips for detecting bed bugs is to look for fecal stains. Fecal staining is common in bed bug nesting areas.  They appear as black dots in clusters.  These stains are most commonly seen on box springs, under mattress ribbings and tags, and the bed frame or the wooden boards used to support the mattress. We have also seen fecal staining on the frames of wall hangings above the headboards.

These stains are extremely difficult to remove. When treating a bed bug infestation, it is recommended that items with a high level of fecal staining be discarded as it can be nearly impossible to remove the staining from the box spring, bed sheets, or bed frame. Once you have a clean surface, if you ever suspect that you have bed bugs again, you will be able to see fresh fecal stains and can then get the proper treatment.

If you do not see any of these stains, this does not mean that you do not have bed bugs, as you could be at the very beginning of a bed bug infestation. But these are telltale signs that bed bugs are near, even if you don’t see the bugs.


Another of the tips for detecting a bed bug infestation is that bed bugs can give off a musty-smelling odor when there is a significant population in a small area.  If you are smelling something unusual in your home, it just might be bed bugs!

But, this can be a challenge, too, as most people will notice all the other signs of a bed bug infestation prior to smelling the musty odor. So, if you smell something odd but don’t see any other signs of bed bugs in the telltale areas like the nightstands, box springs, mattress, bed frames and if you do not see fecal staining, you may not have bed bugs.

To learn more about bed bugs, click HERE.


We recommend canine detection to determine if you have a bed bug problem.  These dogs have been specially trained to sniff out the bugs. And, they can even smell the bed bug eggs.  They are much more reliable than a human at finding an infestation.

It is very easy for a human to overlook bugs and eggs. The eggs are hard to spot unless they are on a dark surface. And the bed bugs hide during the day when people are not in the room.

The canine dog is the best option to determine the precise location of the bed bugs and bed bug eggs. Once you know where the problem is, you can start killing the bed bugs in the most efficient way. Read on to see what we think is the best option to eradicate a bed bug infestation in your home.

Tips for Detecting Bed Bugs and Treatment

Now that you have seen these tips for detecting bed bugs, you have to decide how to get rid of the bed bugs. Heat treatments are the most effective and efficient way to eradicate bed bugs.  Heat will kill bed bugs in every stage of their life cycle, including the eggs.  Harsh chemicals cannot be sprayed on areas that are touched by humans so that type of treatment may miss many of the spots that harbor bed bugs.  And since the chemicals do not kill the bed bug eggs, repeated chemical treatments are necessary. READ MORE By using heat, you can be bed bug-free within 24 hours.

Proper heaters to treat bed bugs

At Debug Your Bed, we personally have been through this stressful situation of having beg bugs.  We went down the chemical path with a reputable company.  We spent thousands of dollars and still had bed bugs.  Once our home was treated with heat, the bed bugs were gone! 

Now, we offer full-service heat treatments and heater rental options.  We can come to your home and treat the bed bug infestation, or you can rent the heaters and do it yourself and get rid of the bed bug infestation.  We have instructional videos and will give you the tools you need to do the job. We will make sure you have the knowledge you need to successfully rid your home of bed bugs.

Give us a call for a free phone consultation if you would like to discuss these tips for detecting bed bugs and get help identifying bed bugs in your home.

We are a pest control company that can help you determine the best plan of action to help you eliminate bed bugs once and for all.