Bed bugs are parasitic insects that prefer to feed on human blood. The common bedbug, Cimex lectularius, is the most famous species of the family. The name of the “bed bug” is derived from the insect’s preferred habitat of houses and especially beds or other areas where people sleep. Bed bugs are mainly active at night but are not exclusively nocturnal and are capable of feeding on their host without being noticed.
A number of adverse health effects may occur due to bed bug bites, including skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms. Diagnosis involves both finding bed bugs and the occurrence of compatible symptoms.
Adult bed bugs are light brown to reddish-brown, flattened, oval shaped and have no hind wings but front wings are vestigial and reduced to pad-like structures. Bed bugs have segmented abdomens with microscopic hairs that give them a banded appearance. Adults grow to 4–5 mm in length and 1.5–3 mm wide. Newly hatched nymphs are translucent, lighter in color and become browner as they molt and reach maturity.