Bed bugs are a public health pest. While bed bugs have not been shown to transmit disease, they do cause a variety of negative physical health, mental health and economic consequences.
Some of these effects include:
- Severe allergic reactions to their bites, ranging from a small bite mark to, in rare cases, anaphylaxis (severe, whole-body reaction).
- Secondary infections of the skin from the bite reaction, such as impetigo, ecthyma, and lymphangitis.
- Mental health impacts on people living in infested homes, effects which include anxiety, insomnia and systemic reactions.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have developed a document to highlight emerging public health issues associated with bed bugs in communities. Download PDF here