“Good night, sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite,” may seem like a harmless little ditty until you experience the physical and mental anguish of actually being bitten by bed bugs. These little parasitic creatures can be found in five-star hotels, apartment complexes, furniture stores, or anywhere else there are soft surfaces and people. Active at night, it is often not until after you have been bitten that you discover red welts rising on your body. What do you do then?
1. Take pictures.
Waking up to the horror of having been bitten by bed bugs, the last thing you want to think of is snapping a picture. However, taking pictures of your bites as soon as they are discovered is an ESSENTIAL part of building a case against the hotel or landlord and will help you recoup money damages in litigation.
2. Clean the wounds with soap and water.
One of the first things you should do is wash the wounds with soap and warm water to prevent infection. Bed bugs do not transmit disease, but they do inject their victim with a chemical that prevents the blood they are consuming from clotting. Once they are done the feeding, the chemical left behind can cause itching, swelling, and redness. Often, taking a shower with soap and warm water can soothe the bites and help reduce the risk of having them become infected.
3. Use over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream to stop the itching.
Most over-the-counter anti-itch creams will help soothe any itchy bed bug bites. These creams can also reduce swelling and soothe any burning associated with bed bug bites. Consult your local pharmacist for recommendations for the hydrocortisone cream that is right for your skin.
4. Visit a doctor if you develop more serious symptoms.
Most bed bug bites will resolve within a week or two without any serious symptoms. However, a small part of the population may develop more serious symptoms after being bitten. If you experience a fever, spreading rash, shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, nausea, or blisters after being bitten by bed bugs, go to a hospital immediately as these are symptoms of an allergic reaction. You may require medication to counteract the reaction to the bites. However, it is also important that you visit a doctor and confirm that you have been bitten by bed bugs. This will also assist your case should you pursue a claim.
Above all else, it is important to remain calm if you have been bitten by bed bugs. If you are traveling, be sure to notify management immediately and request a different room, cleaning services for your luggage and clothing and a thorough inspection of your new accommodations. If you experience bed bug bites at home, in your apartment or your condo, it is important to trace the infestation back to the source to determine liability. Bed bugs travel from one location to another via people, luggage, clothing, or another soft surface such as furniture.
If you have been injured by bed bug bites you may be entitled to significant compensation. Contact the bed bug lawyers at The Elan Law Firm for a free consultation to discuss the details of your case.