Few things may make your skin crawl more than an infestation of bedbugs at the hotel where you plan to spend the night. After all, not all can these small creatures bite you during your sleep, but they may also jump into your clothing or luggage and make their way to your home.
Some individuals have greater sensitivities to bedbug bites than others. Regardless, you can expect bedbugs to at least cause skin irritation. Can bedbugs spread serious diseases like other pests, such as mosquitos or ticks, do?
Disease is not a risk
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports bedbugs do not spread disease. Consequently, for many bite victims, the biggest risk is red and itchy skin. Biting bedbugs may also cause a person to lose sleep, of course.
An allergic reaction is possible
Some bedbug victims experience an allergic reaction to bites. Under normal circumstances, bedbug bites are small red bumps that often appear in a line or a person’s neck or limbs. If you have an allergic reaction to bites, though, you may develop hives, swelling, blisters or severe itching.
Depending on the seriousness of your allergic reaction, you may need emergency medical care. Doctors may treat bedbug allergies with steroids, antihistamines and other medications.
Secondary infections may occur
Because bedbug bites are often itchy, you may scratch your skin. If you break the surface of your skin, you may be vulnerable to a secondary infection. While some infections are minor, a staph or MRSA infection may require hospitalization.
Knowing bedbugs do not spread disease may put your mind at ease. If you develop an allergic reaction or secondary infection, your life may never be the same again, however. Ultimately, you may be eligible for financial compensation from the hotel owner to help you increase your odds of recovering completely.