May 20, 2022

Did you know, back in the day, people believed that they could harness the blood-sucking nature of bed bugs for medicinal purposes to treat everything from infected wounds to hysteria! We've gotten past some of the more outlandish beliefs, but that doesn't mean there aren't a number of myths out there regarding bed bugs.

Let's take a closer look at some of the most popular myths surrounding bed bugs and bed bug treatment in Knoxville.

1 - Bed Buds Are Not Visible to The Naked Eye

A common misconception that a lot of people have is that bed bugs are not visible to the naked eye. This is actually false; they are small - but not microscopic! Adult bed bugs are about the same size as an apple seed and are reddish-brown in color. One of the main things that prompt people to seek out bed bug treatment in Knoxville is that they have spotted one or more of these little critters! This myth may stem from the fact that younger bed bugs and eggs are pretty difficult to spot since they are far smaller and lighter in color, but they are still visible if you know what to look for.

2- Bed Bugs Can Jump and Fly!

Some people believe that bed bugs are winged insects, but that is not the case, and they cannot jump either! All they can really do is crawl around, covering about one meter per minute. However, that doesn't mean they will run at you to grab a snack! They will wait until you are asleep and then pay you a visit. They can crawl vertically, which is how they get up onto beds and curtains. Bed bugs don't enter your home by flying like other pests such as mosquitoes do; instead, they will be carried in on clothing, luggage, or second-hand furniture.

3 - Bed Bugs Only Eat at Night

Circling back to that comment about bed bugs waiting for you to fall asleep brings to mind another popular myth. It is often said that bed bugs only feed at night. This is not strictly true. While nighttime is the optimal time for them to feast, they will eat at other times when the opportunity presents itself. For example, if you enjoy an afternoon nap or work nights and sleep during the day. The main thing is that bed bugs prefer to feed while we sleep, likely because it is less likely we will catch them and squish them! Also, if you are wondering - sleeping with the lights on won't make any difference!

4 - Bed Bugs Only Appear in Dirty Homes

When performing bed bug treatment in Knoxville, we often have customers who are embarrassed by the presence of bed bugs in their homes. They will insist that they are very clean and don't understand why this happened. This is thanks to the unfortunate misconception that only dirty people get bed bugs. That is absolutely not the case; these pests have absolutely no preference when it comes to cleanliness. We have provided bed bug treatment in Knoxville properties that range from upmarket hotels to homeless shelters. As long as there is a supply of blood to feed on, bed bugs will be more than happy to move in. One thing that is perhaps a tiny grain of truth in this myth is that if your home is particularly cluttered, it can make it more challenging to detect an infestation and provide bed bug treatment in Knoxville since they will have more nooks and crannies to hide in.

5 - Bed Bugs Travel on People

The belief that people can carry bed bugs from one place to another is actually partially true. It is a myth in the sense that bed bugs don't cling to the skin like a tick or fleas. However, it is fairly common for them to be carried on a person's belongings from place to place. Backpacks and luggage are a big culprit for bringing bed bugs into your home. When we perform bed bug treatment in Knoxville, we always make sure to treat these items while in the home to help avoid reinfestation.

6 - Bed Bugs Can Survive For a Year Without Feeding

While carrying out bed bug treatment in Tennessee, we often have clients asking us if it's true that bed bugs don't have to eat for an entire year. The answer is no; this is a common bed bug myth. The truth is, if the conditions inside a property are normal in terms of temperature and moisture levels, adult bed bugs can survive up to 3 months without a meal, maybe longer in colder climates. However, young bed bugs need to eat more often and would not survive for long without a source of food.

7 - DIY Bed Bug Treatment is Effective

The final but perhaps the most important myth that we need to bust is regarding DIY bed bug treatments. Many people are tempted to pick up over-the-counter treatments in an attempt to save money. However, the end result is usually that the infestation gets worse. Bed Bugs are becoming increasingly resistant to these solutions, which is why at Otis Pest Control, we use thermal heat treatment to eradicate all bed bugs, eggs, and larvae.


Otis Termite & Pest Control is a full-service pest control company with a focus on outstanding service. We have been serving the East Tennessee area for over 56 years and our reputation is built on prompt and effective service. We’re good at what we do and we’re fast. We do the job right the first time – and that’s an actual guarantee! 

Call 865.690.1662 or visit www.otispestcontrol.net.



Emily Moeck

"I unknowingly moved into a home that had a HUGE bed bug infestation..."Don't you worry, we are on top of this until they are gone, I promise!"... Jack was knowledgeable and honest in his assessment of my house/treatment methods. Thank you, Jack and Rocky and the whole Otis team! My home is home again!"


Joshua Weaver

"Prompt responses and appointment times. Very friendly and knowledgeable. Straight forward service without any "pushing" for extras."


Charlotte Bishop

"These guys were super helpful and kind. Jack thoroughly explained every procedure and made what could have been a horrible situation much more bearable. I definitely recommend them!"


Tamie Ridenour

"Excellent service and staff!! They were at my house the same day I called, for New construction pre-treatment!"


Cathy Amos

"Highly recommend! Jack and Rocky are great! You've got a business and highest recommendation! Great people to work with!"

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