Can Bed Bugs Live in Your Hair?
Head lice are bad enough, but the idea of bed bugs living in your hair is enough to give anyone the heebie jeebies!
But is it actually possible?
Has anyone ever woken up to find that they have a bed bug infestation in their hair?
If these questions keep you awake at night, then fret no more!
In this article we are going to answer these and other commonly asked questions to help put your mind at ease.
Can bed bugs really live in your hair?
To put your fears at rest straight from the outset, let us answer this question with a categorical No!
You never need to worry about bed bugs living in your hair because (and we mean no offense!) your hair is a very inhospitable bed bug habitat.
Bed bugs prefer cool environments, so human hair, and the human body in general, is far too hot for them to live.
Furthermore, there is no way for bed bugs to even climb up into your hair, because unlike other insects like ticks and lice, bed bugs have no claws. This means that these little pests are unable to get a grip, which is definitely good news for everyone who doesn’t fancy becoming a bed bug hotel!
Do bed bugs hide in people’s hair?
Okay, so bed bugs don’t live in our hair, but is there a chance that they could wander up there by mistake and hide out?
The reality is that bed bugs have no interest in you at all other than as a source of food, and it is very difficult for them to get access to your blood through the tangle of your hair, especially as they don’t have any claws or hooks. This is why bed bugs much prefer bare skin because it is easy for them to munch on you while you are sleeping before they return to their hiding place.
Do bed bugs ever stay on people’s bodies?
But if they don’t hide out in your hair, can bed bugs ever be tempted to make a home elsewhere on your body? After all, there are other pests like ticks which often stay on your body even after they have finished their blood meal.
The reality is that bed bugs will never choose to stay on your body because it is just too warm. After bed bugs feed, they much prefer to retreat to a cooler environment where they can hide out until it is time to eat again.
Nobody likes walking long distances when they are hungry, bed bugs included, and that is why they usually live as close to their food source (you!) as possible. This means that most bed bugs live somewhere in or around your bed. This may be in the mattress, the bed frame, or any other furniture in close proximity to your bed. They even nest in box springs, and behind door frames and electrical outlets, where they lay their eggs and wait for night time.
With so many hiding places, there is really no need for bed bugs to ever expose themselves during the day time, or put themselves at risk by spending any more time on your body than they need to.
Do they ever lay bed bug eggs in people’s hair?
A major reason why removing bed bugs entirely from your home is so difficult is that they lay eggs at a tremendous rate. An adult female bed bug can lay up to 500 eggs in her year-long lifetime. This means that if you want to get rid of bed bugs, you also need to find and destroy their eggs as well as any baby bed bugs which have already hatched.
Of course, this is easier said than done. Finding bed bugs that are already full grown is difficult enough because they are only the size of an apple seed, and blend into bed frames and other furniture with their reddish brown color, but finding their eggs is even harder because they are only about the size of a pinhead.
This may have you worried that if there were any bed bug eggs in amongst your hair follicles, you would never be able to detect them. However, as it is so unlikely to get adult bed bugs in hair, the chances of them laying eggs in your hair are essentially zero. Bed bugs tend to lay their eggs somewhere safer where they won’t be disturbed such as deep inside furniture or in cracks and crevices in your walls.
Do you always need to kill bed bugs?
Bed bugs are a notoriously difficult pest to get rid of once a bed bug population has begun to establish itself in your home, even for a professional pest removal company. Bed bugs infest whole houses at an incredible rate once they have been introduced.
However, there are a few things you can do to prevent bed bug infestations, and the first is to make sure that you don’t carry bed bugs home in your luggage at the end of a trip. There are many established bed bug “facts” that are actually not true, and one of the biggest misconceptions is bed bugs spread only in a filthy environment. In truth, bed bugs love to stay at fancy hotels too.
The best thing to do is to make sure you tape up your luggage in your hotel and vacuum it when you get home. This may be time consuming, but it should help to prevent bed bugs and other insect hitchhikers from coming home with you. If you do find any dead bugs when you get home, make sure you vacuum them up straight away.
What steps can you take yourself?
You need to approach a bed bug infestation (and any other pest control issue), systematically. This means identifying bed bug bites on your family members, as well as any other signs and symptoms of bed bugs such as blood filled excrement on your sheets. Bed bugs generally bite a few times at once, so you can often differentiate between their bites and other insect bites because they leave clusters of red spots on your skin. Once you have identified a bed bug problem, you can then try running your sheets through your washing machine on a hot water setting, as well as other home remedies like treating your mattresses with rubbing alcohol.
To sum up…
While you may have nightmares of coming across a bed bug breeding ground with your nit comb, the chances that you will find bed bugs in your hair are essentially zero. Bed bugs stay where they are cool and safe, and while you may have come across bed bug shampoo, there is very little evidence of a genuine need for it.
Either way, if you do have a bed bug problem, and nothing you have tried so far has managed to solve it, you may want to consider some of our some of our expert solutions like steamers and mattress covers.
However, if the problem persists, it may be to time to consider hiring the services of a professional bed bug removal company.