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Bed Bugs Control Singapore: Why Are There Bed Bugs In Your Home?

Introduction Part I: What are Bed Bugs?

  • Where Do Bed Bugs Hide?
  • What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

Part II: Why are Bed Bugs Difficult to Control?

  • How Do You Get Bed Bugs?
  • The Challenges in Bed Bug Control
  • What Does a Bed Bug Infestation Mean For Your Business?

Part III: How to Protect Your Home from Bed Bugs

  • Bed Bug Prevention in Singapore
  • Protect Yourself Against Bed Bugs When Staying in Hotels, Motels, etc.
  • Safeguard Your Home Against Bed Bugs
  • What to Do When There’s Already a Bed Bug Infestation

Part IV: Professional Bed Bug Control by Rentokil

  • How Do You Know if the Bed Bug Treatment is Successful?
  • Why is Bed Bug Treatment a Long-Term Commitment?


Back in the 1920s, the world could not recall a time when bed bugs were not a problem. People were being bitten in the night by these bloodsuckers hiding in mattresses and there seemed to be no solution in sight.

However, things changed with the introduction of DDT, a pesticide proved to eliminating the bugs. For the years thereafter, DDT, among other chemicals, kept residential homes and business “bug-free”.

As we move into globalisation, these bed bugs has started to infest homes, hotels, even planes. These critters are a well-travelled pest and they could be hiding anywhere in the luggage, sofas, beds, and even the tiniest cracks in your wall.

History of Bed Bug Infestation in Singapore

3,500 Years Ago

Fated further than 3,500 years, studies suggest that this pest lived in the same caves where civilisation began and that they fed off bats first and then made the leap to humans.

100 AD

Bed bugs have survived through civilisation, multiplied, and spread across Asia and Europe and by 100 AD, they were significantly present in many countries.


During this time, bed bug infestations are a global issue and with the introduction of DDT—a colourless, crystalline pesticide—bed bugs seemed to be resolved then.


The use of DDT as a pesticide was banned after it was found to be toxic not only to pests but to humans and wildlife as well. They could cause damaging health implications.


The infestation rates have begun increasing even more rapidly and making presence in homes, hospitalities and planes.


Today, the modern bedbug is human-adapted and stressed many individuals with its spread of infestation. Integrated pest management is often used to eliminate this problem.

History of bed bugs infestation in Singapore

In the battle against today’s global bed bug resurgence, we can all learn from the past. Pesticides alone no longer cut it and the best pest control service in Singapore should involve diligent inspection, prevention and management measures, and the use of eco-friendly bed bug treatment methods like steaming.

What are bed bugs

Part I: What are Bed Bugs?

Good night, sleep tight, do not let the bed bugs bite.

Do not let this nursery rhyme deceive you into thinking that bed bugs are some kind cute bugs that crawl into your bed at night. These pests are actually small, oval, brownish insects with flat bodies that are about the size of an apple seed.

They generally feed on human blood and they require blood meals to breed and survive. Unlike mosquitoes, they are wingless and unlike ticks, they do not have the convenience of living directly on a host. Therefore, they have to hide near their food source and wait it is safe to come out and feed. Often, it is when we are soundly asleep at night.

Read also: Which pests emerge at night to source for food?

Life Cycle of Bed Bugs


Female bed bugs lay 1-5 eggs each day and may lay up to 500 eggs in a lifetime. The eggs hatch in 5-10 days and are grain-like and milky white in colour.


These young bed bugs pass through five molting stages, each requiring a single blood meal to complete, before reaching maturity.


Upon reaching maturity, bed bugs often make weekly feedings. They can live anywhere from 6-12 months under preferable conditions. They lay eggs in the same place they harbour.

Life cycle of bed bugs

Where Do Bed Bugs Hide?

Bed bugs may enter your home undetected through luggage, clothing, second-hand furniture, and other items. Their flat bodies allow them to fit into tiny spaces, about the width of a credit card.

Firstly, they do not live in nests. Instead, they hide in groups and found hiding in mattresses, box springs, frames, and other bed components where they can have easy access to people to bite at night. Secondly, bed bugs may scatter throughout the bedroom, moving into more protected locations such as the cracks and crevices in the site. Finally, they may also spread to nearby rooms, even apartments, when left unaddressed.

Where do bed bugs hide

What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

As said earlier, bed bugs are mainly active at night and bite people while they are sleeping. They feed by piercing the skin and sucking blood through an elongated beak. Each feeding can take 3-10 minutes until they engorged and then crawl away unnoticed.

How do you know if the itchy welts on your skin are caused by bed bugs? Unlike flea bites that are mainly around the ankles, bed bug bites can be found on any area of skin exposed while sleeping. They are usually in a line or a cluster and surrounded by a rash.


Location Anywhere on the body,often on exposed skin

Appearance Puffy, white or reddish bump that may occur a few minutes after the initial bite

Symptoms Mild to moderate itching; swelling near bite site


Location Legs,ankles, waist, armpits, or in the folds of elbows and knees

Appearance Small, raised bumps, somtimes in clusters of 3-4 and with a halo around the bump

Symptoms Mild to moderate itching; swelling near bite site


Location Anywhere on the face, neck, arms, and hands

Appearance Small, raised bumps, often in clusters or a straight line and may appear up to 14 days after initial bite

Symptoms Mild itching to anaphylactic shock (life-threatening allergic reaction)

Call emergency services or seek medical treatment immediately if you are worried about a symptom or reaction to any of these bites.

Although they are not known to spread disease, bed bugs can be a serious annoyance. Their bites can cause skin irritation, which can be severe in others. Worse, their bites can cause itching that can result in loss of sleep. In addition, they also caused stress and worries as they face the massive crawling bugs around the home, and emotional and financial pressure, to replace those infested costly furniture.

Are you at risk of bed bug infestation?

The chances of encountering bed bugs increases if you spend time in public places with high guest turnovers—hotels, hospitals, and motels for instance. If you think you have bed bugs, it is essential to contact a bed bug control professional. Given the nature of its infestation, you are not likely to resolve it on your own or by using DIY methods, not to mention their ability to hide well from you.

More importantly to note that bed bugs are cross infestation based, this means they infest in your home without traveling activities. This includes picking up the bugs through close interaction with someone carrying on them or they can crawl in from infested sites nearby.

Why are bed bugs difficult to control

Part II: Why are Bed Bugs Difficult to Control?

Bed bugs are wingless and are not capable of flight. Unlike other wingless insects like fleas, they are also not equipped to jump long distances. Instead, they move from host to host by crawling and hitchhiking.

They dwell almost exclusively with humans due to its body warm it seeks and while it is generally assumed that they come from hotels and motels, the places in which bed bugs have been found is much more extensive—trains, buses, cruise ships, office buildings, nursing homes, schools, theatres, etc. They can hitch a ride anywhere and at any time, and transported by people—often from their personal belongings like clothing, luggage, gym bags, and other items.

In fact, bed bugs are tough and sturdy to escape from the elimination risks of their predators. For example, they have efficient reproduction nature, are nocturnal and able to survive without food source for a few months. Read more to find out why bed bugs are not as simple pest as what we think.

How Do You Get Bed Bugs?

  • If you spend the night in a hotel, no matter how clean and well-kept the accommodation may seem, you’re at risk of picking bed bugs up. The same goes for other public places and transportation.
  • When guests come to stay at your home, they may unknowingly bring bed bugs with them. These bugs could come from their home or at any point of their travel to yours.
  • When your kids visit a friend’s house or go to school, bed bugs could hitchhike onto them and take them home with them.
  • Every time you are coming home from work, you may be picking up the bugs through the activities and human interaction that is going around
  • If you purchased second-hand furniture or picked one up from the side of the road, chances are, you may be potentially picking some bed bugs too.
  • Bed bugs can also enter any holes, cracks, crevices, gaps and entries they can find to your home as they are cross-infestation driven.
Why do you have bed bugs

The Challenges in Bed Bug Control

They are small, sneaky and hard to find.

To the untrained eye, spotting a bed bug latching onto your personal belongings or checking for a bed bug infestation itself can prove difficult and if you miss just one pregnant female bed bug, you are at risk of infested with over 300 more adults and 1,000 new eggs in a span of three months.

Why is it just hard to detect and control bed bugs?

  • Bed bugs are difficult to detect, not because they are almost invisible to the naked eye, but they are evasive, nocturnal, and tend to be very clever at hiding.
  • They are easily transported into previously non-infested dwellings, thus cross-infestation is high.
  • They can be found anywhere and not exclusively in beds—living rooms, kitchens, and hard-to-reach places. It can be challenging to detect all the areas where they could be hiding.
  • Bed Bugs do not multiply nearly as fast as other insects, but even so, they are capable of laying as much as 500 eggs in their lifetime and it does not take long for them to grow out of control.
  • They do not leave behind many signs of their presence except shed exoskeletons and traces of blood or faeces marks.
  • This pest can recur even in clean homes because bed bugs are attracted to blood meal and not filth. Nevertheless, any clutter can further help them avoid detection.

Bed bugs can spread faster than you can imagine. Therefore, proactive detection is key to prevent a bed bug infestation and save you from its potential consequences—bed bug bites, not to mention the costs involved in treatment and repair or replacement of infested items.

What Does a Bed Bug Infestation Mean For Your Business?

A bed bug infestation at home is one stressful thing for your family, but a bed bug problem in a business is another. These pests travel fast and so can word of mouth of a pest issue. One bad review can spark online attention that can result in a slew of consequences:

  • Damaged reputation and brand image
  • Decreased occupancy in accommodations
  • Loss of revenue and dip in business
  • Cost to replace inventory and rebuild reputation
  • Operational disruption and downtime to engage pest control
  • Lawsuits or potential business closure
How to protect your home from bed bugs

Part III: How to Protect Your Home from Bed Bugs

Given the challenges in detection, do not count on finding the bugs themselves. It is not like it is easy to spot a bed bug especially in a bigger area with items around. Instead, focus on searching for signs of a bed bug infestation.

Signs of bed bug infestation

Whether you find a single bed bug in your suitcase or discover a full infestation in your mattress, bed bugs can be a serious pain to eliminate. Therefore, the best pest control solution is to prevent an infestation from occurring in the first place.

Below are some steps you can take to reduce your risks of taking home bed bugs with you.

Bed Bug Prevention in Singapore

Protect Yourself Against Bed Bugs When Staying in Hotels, Motels, etc.

  • Inspect beds. This may sound simple or unnecessary but bed bugs tend to hide along seams and corners of the bed that goes unnoticed.
  • Take a quick scan of the rest of the room. Look for any signs of an infestation particularly in areas where they could be hiding.
  • Keep your suitcase off the floor. This will make it harder for bed bugs to have close proximity to high-risk area in the home
  • Do not leave dirty clothes lying around the floor. Bed bugs are opportunistic pests. If they ever find your clothes on the floor, they can hitch on them comfortably.
  • Unpack your bag immediately, wash your clothes in high water temperature and dry them in high heat for 30 minutes.
  • What about the suitcases? Vacuum them inside-and-out and seal them in plastic for extra measures. Leave them outside under the sun for at least a day.

Safeguard Your Home Against Bed Bugs

  • Clean and declutter. Although dirt and clutter do not attract bed bugs, they still do give them a place to hide. Regular cleaning will make it easy for you to spot possible infestation signs.
  • Wash your bedding after a guest visit. When guests stay for the night, a good precaution is to wash the bedding and clean the room they used to get rid of the bed bugs they may have brought with them unknowingly.
  • Avoid buying used furniture. If there is a need to, least make sure to examine it for a potential infestation.
  • Know what a bed bug looks like. It should help you recognise a threat even before taking it home.

When bed bugs have finally made their way into your home, you should take immediate and calculated actions.

What to Do When There’s already a Bed Bug Infestation

  • Wash your bedding, linens, clothes, and other washable items in hot water and dry them on the highest dryer setting. For items that cannot be washed (e.g. stuffed toys, shoes, etc), toss them in the dryer and run it on high for 30 minutes. Alternatively, toss them away for safety reasons.
  • Using a stiff brush, scrub the mattress seams to disturb the bed bugs and their eggs before vacuuming. Next, vacuum thoroughly, seal and throw the vacuum cleaner bag away. Encase your mattress and box springs in a mattress cover to keep the bed bugs from entering or escaping.
  • Steam cleaning the mattress can also help kill bed bugs on the surface. You may also want to dispose of and replace it with a new one. Although, make sure to rid the rest of your home of bed bugs first. Otherwise, re-infestation is bound to happen.
  • Seal any cracks on the walls and glue down peeling wallpaper to reduce the potential hiding places of bed bugs.

While these measures can help in controlling bed bugs, getting rid of them fully requires chemical treatments and it is safest and most effective if you engage professional pest control services in Singapore.

You may also like: How to bed bugs reproduce and how can we stop them?

bed bug control specialists

Part IV: Professional Bed Bug Control by Rentokil

There is no way to prevent bed bugs fully because there are many ways people can bring them into their homes at any time. Pest can invade anytime, either due to poor home habits, lack of housekeeping or accidental infestation from external source. However, early detection and treatment remain effective in breaking the bed bug life cycle and thus prevent a full-blast bed bug infestation. Which pest control company to engage?

What to Look for in a Bed Bug Control Company?

You should only engage a company that has the license to do pest control. It is also recommended that your choice of pest control provider have experience and a track record of controlling bed bugs safely and effectively.

Below are some other factors you should look for in the best pest control company.

  • Uses integrated pest management (IPM) methods—an approach that is designed to minimise the use of one method in controlling pests but also target in their every life stage.
  • Have adequate knowledge to execute a particular pest control method. Lack of training may result in experiencing losses through re-infestation and damage to property.
  • Conducts property inspections before providing quotes. Remember, the cost to treat bed bugs or any other pests varies according to the level of infestation and size of treatment area.

A professional approach to bed bug control includes:

  • A clean and professional outlook that possess the knowledge expertise
  • Clear instructions on how to prepare the area for treatment
  • Education on pre and after-treatment in how to prevent re-infestation
  • Appropriate treatment at a fair cost and comfort
  • Responsive customer service and after sales service

Our certified team of pest control specialists at Rentokil Singapore is educated in the most advanced bed bug control methods and equipped with adequate resources necessary to control these pests. We get to the root of the problem with targeted inspections and continuous monitoring to ensure the pests never return.

What happens in bed bug control

Hiring an insect control company can prevent a bed bug infestation from turning into a costly and time-consuming problem. Make sure to engage one that uses the right control methods and is capable of developing an effective management programme.

How Do You Know if the Bed Bug Treatment is Successful?

Short answer: if you have had a professional bed bug treatment and it has been a few weeks since there were no signs of continuous infestation, then you may have got the problem already under control.

The truth is, whether or not the treatment has been successful depends on several factors including the following.

Size of Infestation - The larger the infestation, the more difficult it will be to treat and it may take multiple treatments to get it completely under control.

Type of Treatment - If an insecticide treatment is used, it may require more than one application to control the infestation. For example additional steam treatment to target at the eggs

Level of Treatment - Given the complicated nature of bed bug control, the level and thoroughness of the treatment can vary. It usually requires three treatments to break the cycle

Type of Home - Living in a home makes you vulnerable to bed bugs because the risk of cross-infestation is high. Therefore, it is better to inspect the adjacent units or rooms to treat for bed bugs as well to prevent a recurring pest problem.

You may also like: The truth and facts behind bed bug control

Why is Bed Bug Treatment a Long-Term Commitment?

In conclusion, we would like to emphasise the importance of a continuous effort to prevent and control bed bugs.

Because there is always the risk of re-infestation where you could face a recurring bed bug infestation problem even after investing in treatments if you let your guard down. Apart from negligence, there are many possibilities for the reason of a recurrence and below are some of things to discuss with your local pest control specialist.

  • Are the eggs, nymphs, and adult bed bugs been eradicated successfully?
  • How effective and responsive are the chemicals and solutions used?
  • Are the frequency and number of treatments adequate and relevant?

For a bed bug control programme to be successful, you should work together, as a homeowner, with a top-rated pest control company in Singapore. Do not ignore the early signs of bed bugs and make sure to adopt the precautionary measures when getting back home from travel.

Safeguard your home from a bed bug invasion; get in touch with us at Rentokil Singapore today. Visit our website or contact us at (65) 6347 8138.

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