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Nurse Susan
Nurse Susan, Nurse (RN)
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Bed bugs. My husband and my daughter are traveling in Europe

Customer Question

Bed bugs. My husband and my daughter are traveling in Europe now. Several people including my husband, in the group, have bites. The hotel tried yi tell them that they were flea bites. Could you please tell me what to do. How do I know if they are flea vs. bed bugs and if they are bed bugs why do I do. Should I keep their suitcase out of our house and any clothing items. The last thing I want is an infestation in our home. Thank you!
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Owen replied 4 years ago.

Dr. Owen :

Hello, and I am pleased to help, use of my answers are for educational purposes only.

Dr. Owen :

Well unless you can find one of the bugs - it would be hard to say if bed bugs, fleas, or some other 'pest'.

Dr. Owen :

So, what you might want to do is spray the incoming clothing to your house with Permethrin - and even put a small capful in the laundry to eliminate any possible bugs, etc..

Dr. Owen :

you can get this at home depot, lowes' etc - just look on the ingredients for Permethrin.

Dr. Owen :

And, so all clothing, and suitcase should be sprayed and this will kill any fleas, bugs, etc.

Dr. Owen :

It is essentially the same thing the Military uses to prevent mosquitoes, sand fleas, and other 'creatures' from biting our soldiers and it WORKS great

Dr. Owen :

You do not need much to spray and only a capful in the laundry works well

Dr. Owen :

I Hope this helps

Dr. Owen :

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Dr. Owen :

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Dr. Owen :

Hello

Dr. Owen :

Do you have any more questions/

Expert:  Dr. Owen replied 4 years ago.
Also, if there is any ongoing infection with your loved ones - then a prescription to Elimite might be needed.
I Hope this helps
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Expert:  Dr. Owen replied 4 years ago.
Are they home already?
What are you plans when they get home?
Expert:  Nurse Susan replied 4 years ago.
Hello JACustomer,

I am writing here because I have a somewhat different view here as a school nurse who has dealt with children with potential flea and bed bug bites.

There are some differences between the two bites. Flea bites are red dot like lesions,while a bed bug bite will start painless and become an itchy red welt. Also the pattern of the bites can be different...fleas are hoppers but don't hop too high, so bites mainly are on the lower limbs by the calves and ankles. Bedbug bites can be anywhere upon the body as they infest the entire mattress.

These are images of flea bites: http://dermatlas.med.jhmi.edu/derm/IndexDisplay.cfm?ImageID=-529895105

These are images of bedbug bites http://www.skinsight.com/info/resource_center/bed-bugs-and-bug-bites

Here is information on prevention and treatment: http://www.skinsight.com/info/resource_center/bed-bugs-and-bug-bites#prevention

This next link is from a pest control company: I am not endorsing their product by any means, I am just giving the cleaning and inspecting information on their site. http://www.domyownpestcontrol.com/how-to-get-rid-of-bed-bugs-c-39_95.html

I hope that helps, and good luck,
Sincerely,
Susan
Nurse Susan, Nurse (RN)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1091
Experience: RN, BSN, MSN-ED, Nurse Educator whose passion is helping people understand their health and wellness
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