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Bed Bugs?
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Bed Bugs?

While camping in our pop-up-tent-trailer with my husband and 2 kids, I awoke in the night with my scalp itching like crazy.  In the morning my husband and I both had many mosquito-like bites all over.  The second night my husband slept in the other bed with the kids, and I slept alone.  The following morning I had even more.  The 3rd night we were back home, and by the next morning there seemed to be even more.  My husband has substantially less than I do, so I'm suspicious of the bedding: down pillows and down feather bed on our bed in the camper, and the kids are fine (no feathers on their bed).  And the bites were below my tight-fitting, cotton shorts, so I ruled out mosquitos and fleas.  Plus we have a dog and we don't see any fleas on him.  We slept in sleeping bags atop the featherbed.  If we throw out the featherbed and feather pillows, could they be harboring in the foam mattress, in the sleeping bags, in the upholstery in the camper now?  Could they crawl down from the pillow and bite my feet?  And is it possible that the bed bugs/mites/whatever may have stayed on me and are now in my bed at home too?  I'm on day 4 now, and they aren't bad if I don't scratch, but when I scratch them, they turn to big, welts and they are head to toe: scalp, behind ears, eye lids.  I don't see any bugs, and everything I've read on the internet says bed bugs are too small to see.  So now I need to know how to get rid of them, and if my clothes and bedding and furniture in the camper and home could be infected.  Reading stories on the internet are frightening!
We live in California and the weather has been near 100 degrees.  I read that the heat makes the really spread.  I'm totally disgusted and scared that the measures to eradicate them will be huge.  Please advise.
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242489_tn?1210500813
Bedbugs live in bed frames, behind wallpaper, under floorboards.  You don't get them in tents.  I therefore can't explain why what started in the tent-trailer has persisted in the house.  I can speculate that you don't have new bites so much as scratched old ones.  As for bugs you may have been bitten by outdoors, they don't come inside (although it may feel as though they have.)  My advice is to go to the pharmacy and pick up some Sarna lotion (over-the-counter) and apply it as needed for itch.  Take Benadryl 25 milligrams at bedtime (also over-the-counter).  If despite absolutely no scratching, you still get new spots, you'll need to have an exterminator look over your home.  But again--outdoor bugs don;t come in, and it strains plausibility to think you got outdoor bites and suddenly got indoor bedbugs immediately therafter....

I also suggest you stop reading internet postings about bugs--they would make you itch even if you never got bitten.

Best.

Dr. Rockoff
6 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
It sure feels like there are new bites in other places: under my arms, under my breasts, all over.  Could it be lice???????
I had the exterminator come today; he is ruling out the bed bugs, but thinks there's some infestation in the feather bedding and/or the foam mattress.  He took a little bug in a plastic zip lock back to the office to check it out, but said it doesn't look like bed bugs.  He sprayed in there and said he'd take a look again in the next few days.  then he asked me if it could be scabies.  Don't know much about scabies, so I guess I'd better do more internet research, Yikes!  
And on one last note, you are right: one can make oneself crazy by reading horror stories on the internet, but in fairness, if it weren't for the internet, I wouldn't have found you!  

Thank you for your speedy response, I'm off to investigate the possibility of scabies.
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242489_tn?1210500813
It isn't lice--body lice only occur in vagabonds or during wartime.  It also definitely isn't scabies, for many reasons.

If the exterminator does identify a particular bug, I'd be interested to know which one and whether it turns out to be the specific culprit.

Dr, Rockoff
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Avatar_n_tn
I too would like to know what the exterminator finds out. Recently I purchased a feather bed topper and wake up every morning with a new welt that's red and itches.  I mainly sleep on my stomach or sides so they're usually on my hips, stomach and now under my breast.  I don't see any bugs or feces so not sure if it's from investation or from the feathers. Any ideas?
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Avatar_n_tn
My family and I also have the same problem. We recently purchased a foam mattress and haven't stopped itching yet. (well, it seems that way). My husband, my son and myself all have little bites all over us. Heck, even our Mastiff is broke out and red all over from scratching. I have tried just about everything.. We have had the exterminator spray for everything under the sun. Funny thing is, one night while changing the bed we noticed a small black speck on the mattress and it was moving. we tried to catch it but it seemed to bury itself back into the mattress..  Is that our culprit. I would be interested to see what your bug man says..  I am at a loss.
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144586_tn?1284669764
Arghhhh! I came back from a camping trip and infected my mattress and my sofa. And the rug! What it cost to get rid of these critters astonishes me to the day! I had to remove everything and throw it out! They seemed to be invisible and survived every known treatment that was recommended to me.
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