Bed Bug Basics

It's a worldwide problem:

What are bed bugs?

  • Bed bugs are small, nocturnal insects that live by feeding on the blood of animals or humans. Adult bed bugs are reddish brown and nymphs appear transparent.

Are bed bugs dangerous?

  • No, bed bugs are a nuisance and not known to spread disease.

How do you treat bed bug bites?

  • Bites consist of raised red bumps or flat welts, and are often accompanied by itching. Typically no treatment is required. For severe itching, steroid creams or oral antihistamines may be used.
  • If you are concerned about bites or rashes, call the Student Health Nurse at 8265 or stop by her office in the lower level of Perry Campus Center.

How are bed bugs detected?

  • It can be difficult to know for certain if you have bed bugs. Often people notice itchy skin welts, notice small bloodstains from crushed insects, or see dark spots associated with their presence. However, it is often hard to see them because they hide in or near beds, other furniture, and in cracks. Favored hiding spots include bed frames, mattresses and box springs. It's best to rely on a professional exterminator to make a determination.

How is Doane treating the bed bugs?

  • Doane has contracted with PrestoX, a professional extermination company, to treat the infected area as well as a surrounding perimeter. Their first step is to perform a visual inspection by a service technician. If bed bugs are not confirmed during the initial inspection, a K9 inspection can be utilized for additional inspection results. If bed bugs are confirmed, PrestoX will use a non-toxic, high heat treatment process to effectively control bed bug infestations.
  • Skilled Presto-X Technicians use specialized equipment to elevate ambient room temperature and adjust temperatures throughout service to achieve mortality of all bed bugs in any life stages present at the time of service - including eggs.
  • During the heat treatment process, the room is pressurized and heat is forced into the smallest cracks and crevices.
  • By optimizing the furniture arrangement and positioning high temperature fans, hot air circulation is maximized, cool spots are eliminated and lethal temperatures are achieved in all areas of the treatment zone.
  • Temperature probes are placed in strategic locations and infrared, remote thermometers verify that critical temperatures are achieved.
  • Infested furniture will be removed and disposed.
  • Students must wash their clothing, bed linens and all cloth like belongings in hot water and dry on high heat. Items that are not washable such as shoes and backpacks should be ran through a drying cycle on high heat.

What do I do if I suspect bed bugs?

  • Don't panic! Although bed bugs can be annoying, they can be battled safely and successfully if you follow all guidelines given to you by Residence Life.
  • Immediately seek help. Contact Residence Life at 402-826-8111 or if after hours call the Safety Office at 402-826-8669.
  • If you have bites or a rash, please call or visit the Student Health Nurse.
  • Do NOT move your mattress, furniture or other items from your room as this may simply spread the bed bugs.
  • Do NOT attempt to control the bed bugs on your own as they must be professionally treated.

Additional Resources

Visit the UNL County Extension Office for more information on bed bug infestations.