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Can Bed Bugs Climb Metal?

a bed bug climbing up someone's skin

If even the thought of bed bugs makes you cringe, you aren’t alone. Most people live in fear of encountering these pests because they are notoriously hard to get rid of. Many are eager to learn easy ways they can prevent these pests. For example, some people wonder whether bed bugs can climb metal. The thinking here is that a metal bed frame might offer protection if these bugs have a hard time climbing the slick surface of the frame. Although bed bugs do find it easier to climb more textured surfaces like fabric or wood, they can climb metal. Unfortunately, this means beds on metal frames can harbor these pests just as well as any other type of bed. However, by learning the early signs of bed bugs, you can help prevent a full-blown infestation. 

Bed bugs can be creative about how they reach you in your bed at night. These bugs are most often found hiding in people’s mattresses, but they can also hide behind picture frames, inside drawers or between floorboards. If your sheets or blankets droop onto the floor at night, and bed bugs are waiting nearby, they’ll take the opportunity to climb up and bite you for a tasty meal.

Bed Bug Identification and Behavior

Bed bugs are small insects about the size, shape and color of an apple seed. They feed on the warm blood of mammals, like humans, dogs and cats. Their small, flat bodies are perfect for lying in wait within tiny crevices until the right moment comes to emerge for a blood meal

Bed bug bites often show up in a characteristic “breakfast, lunch and dinner” pattern—lines of bites on people’s skin. This is because these insects “bite” their victims in one spot, suck their blood and then move a short distance away for another bite. Incidentally, bed bugs don’t technically bite people. They have a sharp, straw-shaped mouthpiece that they use to make a tiny slit in their victim’s skin and then suck up the blood.

Bed bug bites can be intensely itchy. They might even turn into small blisters. Since bed bugs are not known to carry diseases, their bites themselves don’t typically cause problems beyond extreme itchiness. Still, some people do have allergic reactions to bed bug bites. Additionally, scratching these bites sometimes leads to more serious secondary infections like staph or MRSA due to the vulnerability of the broken skin.

For many people, one of the biggest negative effects of a bed bug infestation is actually emotional—specifically, the anxiety that this particular pest infestation can bring. Bed bugs are incredibly difficult to get rid of for many reasons. For one, they’re tough to spot, since they hide during daylight hours and mostly venture out at night. Besides hiding inconspicuously, their eggs are so tiny and pale that they’re difficult to see with the naked eye. And, to make matters worse, bed bugs multiply quickly.

Dealing With a Bed Bug Infestation

If you’re dealing with a bed bug infestation, a metal bed might help a bit, but you’ll also need to take other steps to eliminate these pests. For example, you’ll need to vacuum your entire mattress very carefully, paying special attention to the piping and seams that run along the edges of the mattress. These are prime spots for bed bug eggs and adult bed bugs to hide. You can also wrap tape around a credit card, sticky side out, and press it into the seams to pull out any eggs.

You’ll also need to vacuum the entire area around the bed, as well as the floors and baseboards. Move any furniture away from the wall and take down any frames or mirrors so you can make a careful inspection behind them since bed bugs sometimes hide there. Once the entire bed area looks free of bed bugs, encase the mattress in plastic, and make sure the bed is positioned well away from the wall before making it up with clean sheets.

Sometimes, when people find out they have bed bugs in their bed, they bring their sheets with them to a different bed or sleeping area in the house in hopes of getting a bite-free night’s rest. Unfortunately, doing this can introduce bed bugs to other parts of the home. If you find bed bugs in one bed or room, treat that area so you can continue sleeping there and don’t risk spreading them to other parts of the house.

Contacting a professional is the best and most efficient way to get rid of bed bugs in your home. A pro knows exactly where to look for these insects and can determine the full extent of the infestation. Pest control professionals have access to the latest products and techniques to eliminate these pests and can help you regain a sense of peace in your home.

two bed bugs

How Do You Get Bed Bugs in the First Place?

If you’re dealing with a bed bug infestation in your home, you know that it’s a nerve-wracking experience trying to get rid of them. Bed bugs are notoriously tough to eliminate, and it takes a lot of ongoing effort to successfully get rid of them once they’ve settled in. But how do you get bed bugs in the first place? Knowing the answer to this question will help arm you against unknowingly inviting these nasty pests into your home.

Bringing Bed Bugs Home

Many of us love traveling, and many people also love thrift stores, garage sales and bargain hunting. Unfortunately, all of these fun activities can lead to bringing bed bugs home with you. Travelers can encounter bed bugs in hotels—even very clean and highly rated ones—as well as in sleeper trains and other places that host a lot of people.
When you travel, it’s a good idea to do a visual inspection of your hotel room before settling in. Pull back the sheets and look at the bed’s mattress. Do you see any little black dots that could be bed bug feces? What about brownish stains that could be blood stains from people who have slept there and been bitten? Bed bugs can also hide between wooden floorboards, in carpets and even dresser drawers. That’s why we recommend storing your luggage on a luggage rack rather than on the floor. Hanging your clothes in the closet or keeping them in your suitcase is also a good practice.
After going shopping at a thrift store or garage sale, do a visual inspection of any furniture you buy. Finding little black dots or brownish stains could indicate there are bed bugs in the couch. Clusters of stains along the edges or seams of cushions can also be signs of a bed bug infestation. If you bring home second-hand clothing or bedding, wash and dry it on high-heat settings before using it or storing it in your closets.

Since bed bugs are silent havoc wreakers, it’s best to trust an expert to help you with an infestation. A specialist can determine whether the bed bugs have localized in one bed or room, or if they’ve already spread to other parts of the house. They can also recommend a comprehensive pest treatment plan that is customized to your home.

a close up of a bed bug crawling on skin

Can You Get Rid of Bed Bugs?

Dealing with a bed bug infestation can be an ongoing, stressful and overwhelming process. Sometimes, people dealing with these pests ask pest control specialists, “Can you get rid of bed bugs?” Fortunately, you can get rid of bed bugs—but it takes effort, vigilance and usually a multi-pronged approach.

A pest control professional will work with you to develop a plan to eliminate bed bugs from your home. They will also set up follow-up visits to inspect the area in case further treatment is needed. It’s not unusual for it to take several products, techniques and rounds of treatments to get rid of bed bugs completely
A professional exterminator might use specialized products or treatments to eliminate these pests. If you have a major infestation, they will likely need to use insecticide products. There are a few non-chemical steps homeowners can take on their end to get rid of bed bugs. These include vacuuming, washing bedding and drying it on high heat, and encasing your mattress in bed-bug-proof covers.

Chemical and non-chemical methods work best against bed bugs when they’re used together. A bed bug infestation should always be handled by a pest control professional

ABC Can Make You and Your Family Members Comfortable

It’s easy to get overwhelmed if you discover you have bed bugs in your home. Homeowners can easily bring these pests home if they enjoy thrift stores or traveling. These insects are incredibly difficult for homeowners to get rid of on their own. Get relief from bed bugs by contacting ABC Home & Commercial Services. We create customized pest treatment plans that will work best for you and your family members, so you can feel comfortable in your home again.

Russell Jenkins

Russell Jenkins is the Chief Communications Officer for ABC Home and Commercial Services in North Texas. Russell has been working as part of the ABC Family since he was 12 years old under the direction of his father, Owner Dennis Jenkins, and has since held several leadership roles at ABC. Russell holds a degree in Agricultural Leadership from Texas A&M University, and is a Food Safety Specialist. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and two children, playing tennis, and gaming.

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