January 15, 2014 2:31 AM   Subscribe

I was in bed, felt something crawling on my forehead, scraped it way with my sheet, and the sheet came back smeared with blood. Am I totally fucked with bedbugs or could it be something else?

I am in NYC and don't seem to have any of the other typical signs of bedbugs...dark spots on the mattress, casings, or actual bites. But if this is definitely bedbugs I'd like to get it sorted out before it turns into a full blown infestation. Help!
posted by posyblue to Home & Garden (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Even though it is the middle of winter, there was a mosquito buzzing around my apartment the other day. I have no idea where it came from, but it was there. I wouldn't automatically assume that you have suddenly gotten bedbugs if you have no other reason to expect it but it does sound like you have some kind of blood sucking insect in your place, which is less than ideal.
posted by Literaryhero at 2:46 AM on January 15, 2014 [8 favorites]

Seconding likely mosquito. It was probably in the midst of biting you when you woke up and smashed it.
posted by sundaydriver at 2:58 AM on January 15, 2014

If you did squash a mosquito then there are probably some visible remains of it around. This apart you might be interested in the differences between a mosquito and a bed bug bite.
posted by rongorongo at 3:37 AM on January 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

I don't think bed bugs generally go for your head.
posted by Jess the Mess at 3:46 AM on January 15, 2014 [4 favorites]

As someone who had bedbugs once, years ago, I recommend you focus on thoroughly searching your bed, mattress and surrounding area for signs of bedbugs, rather than trying to analyze the bites themselves. Do the search every day for the next week, just to be safe.

I say that because bedbug bites look different on everyone - on me they looked exactly like mosquito bites, and I almost never got the three-in-a-row pattern - and because depending on the circumstances they will bite you anywhere, not just on/near your head - mine liked my legs a lot. I'm sure the advice you're getting from rongorongo and Jess the Mess is well-meaning, but it's really not the best way to identify a bedbug problem.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 4:12 AM on January 15, 2014 [4 favorites]

EDIT: ...depending on the circumstances they will bite you anywhere, including on/near your head...
posted by schroedingersgirl at 4:34 AM on January 15, 2014

My guess is it's benign, bedbugs won't go for your forehead but your neck, arms, behind the legs instead.

Search anyway as schroedingersgirl described but I wouldn't worry about it.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 5:06 AM on January 15, 2014

Yes, bedbugs can and will bite you on the forehead.

Not saying that posyblue has bedbugs - probably not! - but it would be great to minimize this type of bedbug misinformation.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 5:53 AM on January 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

If it turns out to be indoor mosquitoes then they are most likely coming from your drains and you'll want to get some flat rubber sink stoppers for each sink or tub in your home.
posted by Jacqueline at 8:00 AM on January 15, 2014

Could well have been a spider, a LOT of spiders out there, of all sizes
posted by edgeways at 7:03 PM on January 15, 2014

Response by poster: So, for the curious...I don't have bedbugs. I did let the paranoia get to me and hired a professional to come and inspect my apartment.

For NYC folks who come across this thread in the future, I spent a couple hours stalking the highly useful bedbugger forums, and I ended up hiring Boot-a-Pest, who goes by KillerQueen on the site, and could not have been more impressed. He and a colleague spent over 1.5 hours inspecting every possible bedbug hideout in my home and completely talked me down from the proverbial ledge.

(I realize this might sound spammy, since I don't have any other activity under this particular username, but I'm a longtime and active user of the site posting under a sock for this particular question.)
posted by posyblue at 6:55 PM on January 30, 2014

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