We’re all prepared to be Leaving on a Jet Plane once again after a few years of uncertainty when travelling abroad.
But holidaymakers are being warned to look out for creepy crawlies that could be lurking beneath the sheets when going away this summer.
There’s always a small risk that you could be sharing the sheets with some unwelcome guests – commonly referred to as bed bugs.
The tiny creatures don’t just stay in the mattresses and covers- they can move to the carpets and other upholstery too.
Mattress experts have put together a helpful list of signs that a hotel room could be infested with bed bugs.
A spokesperson for MattressNextDay said: “After the past couple of years we all deserve a fantastic holiday this summer and let’s face it none of us wants to be sharing a bed with these little critters.
“It’s important to spot the signs early so that it doesn’t ruin your holiday and ultimately it doesn’t affect your health.
“If you do spot signs of bed bugs when you arrive at your hotel or apartment then it is best to notify the appropriate staff immediately.
“We’d advise anyone who is genuinely worried about bed bugs to take a small bug spray with them in their suitcase, just as a precautionary method.”
Here are a few key indicators that could suggest to tourists that they may not have the bed to themselves:
This is as gruesome as it sounds. When the bugs get squashed they release a lot of blood, especially around the seams of mattresses – which is where they tend to hide.
These spots can start to look a rusty colour the longer they have been there. So make sure both sides of the mattress are free from any blood stains.
They’re not always hiding in plain sight. The eggs are tiny and can be found in numerous places, not just on the mattress.
They are about 1mm wide and are often a pale yellow colour. If you do find any of these eggs, it could mean the bed bugs are still very much alive.
If the bedroom area has a strong, musty and unpleasant odour this could possibly come from a bed bug’s scent glands. It is strongest when there are large amounts of bugs present.
Dark spots on walls
Bed bugs can also leave stains on walls too. If you notice any dark spots this could be bed bug excrement. It’s vital that you don’t touch any of the affected areas.
Bugs shed their skin once they begin to grow so if you’re looking for a shell you should look for small, husk-like specks that may crunch if squashed.
They are mainly found amongst fabric, so check mattresses, headboards, sofas and any other upholstery.
Worn or aged upholstery
Old fabrics that may not have been cleaned thoroughly or are possibly second hand could house a family of bed bugs.
If the place you’re staying is of a slightly older nature or a boutique style, it’s always best to double-check the fabric and furnishings before settling in.
White spots on furniture
Bed bugs also like to lay their eggs in furniture as well as mattresses, especially sofas.
These will look like bunches of small white spots from a distance, but on closer inspection, this can be where the bugs have decided to keep their eggs.
If you haven’t spotted any of these signs but have woken up with small, red, itchy spots on your skin, this could be down to the creepy critters.
The bites will often form a straight line across a part of your body, this is a hallmark bed bug trait.
Mosquitoes and fleas don’t bite in this formation, so if you do notice these red spots it is best to seek medical advice.
To find out more about how to check your mattress at home or abroad click here.
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