Very possible infestation, and spreading!!(4 posts)
I recently moved into a new apartment that I am subletting. For the first week I slept there, I noticed five bites but none were near each other. One on my knee, one below on the shin, one behind my knee, on my outer right thigh and outer left thigh. I thought I could have been bitten when I hiked through the forest while staying at my friend's place, but I didn't notice these bites the day after the hike. After seeing these bites were when my suspicions started that I have bed bugs... They're small, red, and like other people say, no bigger than a pinprick. One morning when I was up at 5am, I turned around and saw what looked like a black mark in the shadows, next to a window crevice. When I went closer to look at it, it seemed to sense me and moved into the narrowest crack. I was pretty tired at this point and not wearing my glasses, so I can't tell you what shape it was. But seeing as how it was able to fit into a tiinnyyy crack... My suspicions are that it's one very flat, annoying bed bug. I told my boyfriend, father, and friends about this and they all thought I was overreacting... I also went home for a week after that and stayed at my bf's house and my house. I didn't receive any bites then, and neither did my friends/family.
However, when I went back to my apartment for the past two weeks, I've been receiving some bites here and there, but not nightly. I woke up once to two small red bites next to my belly button, a few days after that, there were a few bites right above my butt, and there was a small bite in the crevice behind my ear that itched another morning. These bites are generally itch a little but not a lot. I react strongly to mosquito bites, which swell up a lot on me.
Even after these few bites, everyone still said I had no bed bugs, and my roommates, who had them in a previous apartment, said my bites didn't look like their bites. (They said that when they had the infestation, all they did was leave their mattress out in the warm summer air for hours.) I do remember reading online that people react differently to bed bugs and people won't necessarily share the same reactions. My roommates, who sleep in a different bedroom, haven't shown any indication that they're being bitten right now, which makes me think that if I have bed bugs it could be a minor infestation. I called the current leasee to ask if he had any signs of bed bugs or any bites previously, but he said no to all of them. I have searched my mattress seams, below my mattress, checked the sheets, and I cannot find any fecal spots, casings, live bugs, eggs, or blood stains. But I haven't been able to look into the box spring because the fabric is sewed up, and I'd rather not cut open the fabric when I don't own the furniture.
It's been making me uneasy to sleep on some nights when my paranoia flares up, so I've isolated my bed from the walls. However, I still received the bites on my ear and butt after isolation. And now here's the kicker... I just returned yesterday to my home city and went to my boyfriend's place. Because everyone kept telling me that I should calm down, I didn't take the necessary precautions (washing clothing, bagging, bringing clean items), I am now 95% sure I may have spread the infestation to my boyfriend's house. It seems like I broke almost every rule in the book--I brought clothing from the possibly infested room, put my bookbag right down at the foot of his bed, and left it open for the night. This morning, he woke up with one bite on his back, which has swelled up more than any of my bites have, one red bite mark on his inner elbow, two bite marks on his lower leg, and one bite mark around his ankle on the same leg. One of the bite marks have a scab in the middle. He already came home with mosquito bites yesterday, and those swell up a lot for him too.
I am now going through insane guilt that I may have brought this crazy problem to his place... What's worse is that his house is entirely floorboards, and his parents are away on vacation for now but I told him to let them know as soon as they come back.
As of now I feel pretty certain I have bed bugs and perhaps I brought a live one back with my belongings. I don't think it could be anything else... There was a mice running around one day but the creepy crawler I saw that one time at 5am makes me think it's bed bugs. I feel so much shame for this and keep apologizing to my boyfriend. I keep thinking about what he could do right now, to stave off a growing bed bug population, but it's such a big house. And with his parents gone, should he really start bagging everything and washing things?? I almost want to ask if there's any chance that it's NOT bed bugs... but I feel like everything I've typed indicates positively that it is. I'm frustrated to all hell.
For my apartment, I'm buying the Packtite and airtight plastic bags, and building management is sending an exterminator on Friday to spray the apartment. It's terribly inconvenient to my roommates because they're already so busy without having to wash, clean, and pack everything for the exterminator. I am moving out of this apartment back home but am going to try to take all necessary precautions. I plan to store whatever I don't need in my garage for 18 months in plastic bags.
And after reading so many stories... I just want to cry at the possibility that I'll never be rid of bed bugs again, or that there is a possible "ping-pong" infestation if my boyfriend and I haven't taken care of our respective infestations. I would give anything for my bites to have just be regular old mosquito bites, or even mites/scabies... And I know it's bad when I'm wishing that it's another kind of parasite.
i know we all feel the same way....
not everyone gets a good pco or takes the proper measures to get rid of them, and only because they are given the wrong information. You seem to know what you have to do.
Be happy you don't own your home like I do. I have to stay. :/
If i rented, id put all my stuff in a Uhaul and i swear I'd hire those guys that thermal heat everything up to 140 degrees, which kills everything. i keep telling myself if we move, that's what i'm doing.
As for your boyfriend, he should get exterminator quick before the one turns into 4 or 5 and so on.
thanks bb epidemic, for all the great advice! i'm trying to keep myself levelheaded and not exhaust myself by overworrying and going over the "what-ifs" such as what if i had properly cleaned and bagged everything when i first saw the signs... i'm just really glad that we have a great resource here, where people can unload and find good information on how to handle this problem.
it is somewhat relieving that i'm only renting, but i am running back to my family house with all my belongings! so i think i will look into that thermal heating treatment for my moving car. any recommendations people?
it's also interesting that i'm going from another city back to nyc, where i see from all my google searches is having a recent resurgence. gah.
I had a thermal heat estimate last week from a company on this site
but i dont' know where you are...they serve the tri state area.
There's another up north http://www.pureheat.com
So all just depends on where you are!
Yeah i think they are up and coming everywhere in US, not just NYC. It's scary. I'm scared. All the time. lol.
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