Do Bed Bugs Carry Diseases?

While bed bugs do carry disease-causing organisms, they are not known by the medical community to transmit any diseases to humans. There are some that claim bed bugs have spread leprosy, Q-fever, and brucellosis, but there is little to no evidence to support these claims.

However, if you have a reaction to the insect’s bites and fail to keep the irritated area clean, an infection can occur. The elderly, children and those with defective immune systems are at the highest risk for developing an infection from untreated bed bug bites. In rare cases, people bitten by bed bugs have experienced severe allergic reactions, especially when bitten numerous times.

Bed bug bites are not only physically irritating, but there are psychological concerns as well. People living or working in an area with a known bed bug infestation can suffer from a lack of sleep, low morale, and increased stress levels.

If a person does have a reaction to bed bug bites, it typically takes a day or more after the insect’s feeding for signs to develop. In extreme reactions, large pus-filled hives can emerge in the areas where bitten.