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Bed Bugs

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Jul 7, 2024.

What are bed bugs?

Bed bugs are small, flat insects that bite your exposed skin and feed on your blood while you sleep. They can spread from person to person. They hide in the folds and seams of bed linens, furniture cracks, and electrical outlets. They are common in areas of frequent travel or buildings with shared walls, such as hotels or apartments.

What are the signs and symptoms of bed bug bites?

You may have swollen areas that are irritated or itch. These areas may appear right away or several days after you were bitten. The bite marks may be in a straight line or in random areas. They look like mosquito or flea bites. You may also have swelling, fluid-filled blisters, or open sores from scratching the bites.

How are bed bug bites treated?

Bites usually go away on their own. You may need medicines to help decrease itching and inflammation. These may be given as a pill, cream, or ointment. Do not scratch the bite marks. Scratching may cause a skin infection.

What can I do to prevent bed bugs?

Call 911 for any of the following:

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.