You wake up and notice small reddish-brown splotches on your sheets. Is that blood? How?
Do bed bugs leave blood stains on sheets?
The short answer is yes, they do. Bed bugs are tiny brown insects that feed on the blood of humans and animals. Blood stains on bed sheets and pillowcases indicate that you have unwanted guests in your home.
However, bed bugs also leave fecal stains that are often mistaken for blood.
The main difference is that fecal stains appear dark brown or black while blood stains leave red marks.
So why do bed bugs leave stains on sheets? Here’s what we know:
- Bed bugs appear flat before feeding. However, they elongate when the bed bugs feed on blood. For that reason, you can easily squash them when you roll over in your sleep, forming blood stains on your bedding.
- Bites from bed bugs bleed. Therefore, the blood stains may be because you bled from the biting.
- Bed bugs have a hollow tube-like mouthpart that they use to suck blood. The blood can drip off from the mouthpart and get on the bedding.
We’ll go in further depth regarding bed bugs and what to do if you think you’ve got an infestation.
Do Bed Bugs Leave Blood Stains on Sheets?
It is not uncommon to find blood stains on your bedding, even if you’ve got no sign of bed bugs.
Bed bugs are tiny and sneaky. They’re about the size of an apple seed and can hide in tiny cracks and crevices in your furniture, walls and floors, mattresses, etc. It could mean that they are still present in your home though you can’t see them.
In addition, bed bugs are very good at hiding and come out if hungry or at night when it’s time to feed.
Moreso, they like hiding in dark, undetectable places. They could be hiding in a dirty pile of laundry or under your mattress, hence making it hard to detect them. Furthermore, it’s hard because they go unnoticed in messy rooms.
Therefore keeping your rooms tidy is imperative to keeping the pests at bay (but even a clean room can have bed bugs!).
Additionally, you could be mistaking fecal spotting for blood stains. When the little vampires defecate on your bedsheets, they leave dark brown marks. These spots may look like blood stains.
You could be mistaking fecal spotting for blood stains. When the little vampires defecate on your bedsheets, they leave dark brown marks.
How to Spot Bed Bugs in Your Home
It is not easy to spot bed bugs during the day as they mostly show up at night to feed. However, when you have a bed bug infestation, the bugs are often so numerous that you can find one or two walking around.
Additionally, they hide in tiny crevices and corners of the house.
Furthermore, bugs occasionally shed their exoskeletons. So, if you are attentive, you can detect bed bug casings lying around your floors. The shells resemble small tiny translucent insects. However, they don’t move, and you will find them where the bed bugs shed them last.
When you find signs of bed bug infestation in your home, you should probably contact an exterminator to help you get rid of them. A bed bug infestation escalates quickly, so if you don’t act immediately, the situation may get out of hand.
A bed bug infestation escalates quickly, so if you don’t act immediately, the situation may get out of hand.
Do Bed Bugs Have Blood of Their Own?
Bed bugs don’t have blood per se. However, they churn out a fluid called hemolymph (many insects have hemolymph) that clots just like blood when they get injured.
Nonetheless, the bugs don’t have any red blood cells. Therefore, their blood color is not red. The hemolymph is bluish-green when oxygenated, and gray when it’s not.
When bed bugs get squashed as you turn in your sleep, the blood that comes out is not their blood. It’s your undigested blood that they’ve recently fed on.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bug Stains on Bed Sheets
Finding blood stains on your favorite matching pair of bedsheets and pillowcases can be a frustrating ordeal. Particularly if the stained bedding is white, brightly colored, or expensive Brooklinens.
Luckily, there are a few ways to remove bed bug blood stains and save your treasured bedding. Here is a guide to getting rid of the stains step by step:
Finding blood stains on your favorite matching pair of bedsheets and pillowcases can be a frustrating ordeal.
1. Locate the Nesting Areas
The first and most crucial step is locating the bed bugs’ nesting spots. It will help you focus on particular areas. You will know bed bugs infest a spot if you find eggs laid in groups. Look for bed bugs under the mattress, furniture, and curtains.
Although bed bugs are tiny, it is possible to see them with the help of a flashlight. Bugs are light brown and smaller in size than roaches.
2. Use Cold Water to Blot the Spots When You Notice Them
Bed bug blood stains and fecal matter are organic. Cold water loosens fresh stains. Let the bedding soak for a few hours and wash off with cold water and detergent. Nonetheless, avoid using warm water as it will set the stains.
3. Pre-treat the Stains Fabric Stain Remover
For this method, you should check the container for instructions. Make sure the fabric stain remover is enzyme-based. First, spray the stain remover on the stained areas and let it sit for not more than half an hour. Luckily, the stain removers are available at local stores.
4. Wash the Fabric in Cold Setting
Put the fabric in a washing machine and wash it for a complete cycle with bleach and detergent. Washing pre-treated on a cold setting loosens the blood stains even faster and increases the chances of them fading out completely.
5. Treat the Remaining Spots With Ammonia and Hydrogen Peroxide
If the stains remain after washing the bedding, apply equal amounts of ammonia and hydrogen peroxide to the affected area. Consequently, dab the stain with a clean cloth until it fades off completely.
However, experts recommend blotting for only for 10 to 15 min to avoid ruining the fabric. Moreover, do not overuse hydrogen peroxide.
Managing Bed Bug Infestation
Controlling bed bugs can be aggravating if you are doing it alone, and it’s often best to bring on the experts. Bed bugs can go dormant and survive up to a year with no food, so it’s hard to know when you’ve actually cleared your infestation!
A bed bug infestation in your home is a frustrating ordeal. Not only do the culprits stain fabric, but they also leave blood stains on your favorite curtains, carpet, or seat and mattress covers. And you can spread the infestation inadvertently by going in cars, visiting friends’ homes, etc.
Even worse, bed bug bites may cause an allergic reaction. In addition, the bites are itchy, and constant itching may damage your skin.
Here are a few ways to get rid of bed bugs:
1. Identify All Infested Areas
Bed bugs hide in dark places and crevices. However, if the whole house is infested, you can find them anywhere. Search for bed bugs on mattress seams, curtain folds, electric sockets, and any other place that comes to mind.
Bed bugs lay their eggs in a group. Consequently, the eggs are easy to locate. More, look for their droppings and casings, as this will help you locate the culprits.
Getting rid of your mattress will often help, but will not solve the problem.
2. Contain the Bedbug Infestation
Once you locate the nesting areas, vacuum the infested areas with a vacuum cleaner. Experts recommend using a vacuum cleaner with bags. The bed bugs will be contained in the bags together with other trash. You should empty the vacuum content into plastic bags and dispose of them.
On top of that, clean the vacuum thoroughly to ensure you get rid of all the bed bugs.
3. Prep For Bed Bug Treatment
Dispose of garments infested by bed bugs. Additionally, wash affected curtains, carpets, and bedding in a high setting. Also, ensure that they have dried properly.
Additionally, pick up items lying under the bed. Moreover, move your bed away from the wall so the insects do not crawl on it. Consequently, glue down loose wallpaper and seal all the cracks.
4. Kill the Bed Bugs
Bed bugs can be killed by using either chemical or non-chemical methods.
Non-chemical methods are insect control methods that don’t utilize insecticides. Some of the non-chemical methods include:
- Washing and drying garments at the highest setting. A blow dryer may help.
- Thorough Vacuuming
- Using a high-temperature steamer on the affected areas
- Placing bedbug-proof covers on beds
Chemical methods involve using insecticides or chemicals to eliminate bugs and other insects in the house. These methods include:
- Pyrethrins and pyrethroids
However, some bed bugs are resistant to these chemicals
Desiccants work by destroying the bugs’ outer coating. Bed Bugs can’t live without their outer shell.
Bed bugs leave blood stains on bed sheets and other bedding — your blood. Bedbugs themselves don’t have blood. They have a fluid called hemolymph that is yellowish or greenish. Therefore, the blood stains are your undigested blood. Additionally, blood stains result from squishing bed bugs in your sleep or bleeding bed bug bites.
Bed bug infestations can be a real difficult challenge, so good luck. If you’re able to afford it, it’s almost always best to call in an expert.