The Reoccurrence of Bedbugs
The old saying “Don’t let the bedbugs bite” is not just a cute – but dated – expression anymore; the significance of the phrase is beginning to ring true once again as the global resurgence of bedbugs continues to become a growing concern. The incidence of bedbugs had previously decreased towards the end of the 20th century allowing the concerns associated with infestation to become a distant memory. However, these insects have recently returned with a vengeance and equipped with resistance to pesticides regulated for public use.
The return of bedbugs is of special interest to myself as a community nurse working in the uncontrolled environments of my client’s personal homes. On a daily basis I am exposed to the conditions that people live in, by choice or subjection, and in turn increase the risk of exposing my own home and family to unwanted guests and varmints. By increasing my knowledge on the topic of bedbugs, one of the top three most difficult infestations to eradicate, I can better protect myself, my family, and my other patients from exposure.
The research conducted on the resurgence of bed bugs revealed the health risks caused by infestation, including physical and psychosocial problems, the environmental impact of treatment, the solutions to the epidemic, and the relationship that my findings have to our class topics and discussion.
Bedbugs are more than just a nuisance to their hosts; they can cause physical symptoms and psychological distress to those affected by infestation. In addition, research continues to progress on their role as vectors for infectious disease. Bedbugs are members of the Cimicidae family, commonly referred to as Cimids, they not only infest in human households but also in the environments of other vertebrae’s such as birds (Williams & Willis, 2012). Although there are many species of bedbugs, only two generally affect humans, C. lectularius and C. hemipterus, which can only be individually identified by specialists due to their similar size and characteristics (Williams & Willis, 2012). Both types are miniscule in size, with an average of 5 to 7 mm, and change shape after feeding. Infestations can rapidly multiply because of the rate of reproduction and short incubation times.
Bedbugs feed by piercing (“biting”) their hosts exposed skin, the insects can only pierce uncovered areas as their proboscis is not strong enough to puncture even the thinnest of fabrics (Davies, Field, & Williamson, 2012). Allergic reactions may occur from the feedings, causing red, itchy, papules to present that may be mistaken for mosquito, or spider bites, especially in developed counties and areas where bedbugs are not common (Williams & Willis, 2012). Bedbugs are not known to cause allergic reactions in every individual, but when a reaction does occur treatment is required to prevent further complications such as infection to the sites from scratching. Antihistamines and...