Bed bugs are everyone’s nightmare; but things are about to get worse or are already if we are to go by a recent study. The study, which was conducted by a research team comprised of scientists from Virginia Tech and New Mexico State University and was published in the Journal of Medical Entomology, reveal that bed bugs are increasingly becoming more resistant to insecticides.
Bed bugs are a bunch of menace to our beds, and love to cause us all sorts of troubles and sleeplessness. They are small insects that usually inhabit your bed. Bed bugs depend on human blood for feeding and are usually nocturnal. Symptoms of their bites are usually in the form of rashes close to the bite or allergic reactions.
However, bugs do have an intense psychological effect on their victims as a result of the fact that it causes sleeplessness, and in other cases may deprive you of a sound sleep; especially when you know that your bed is infested with insects that partake in consumption of blood.
Cimex lectularius is the most common bed bugs, and has been almost wiped off in the developed countries in 1994, after besetting human beds and homes for thousands of years. However, they have sort of increased in number since 1995 due to bans placed on effective insecticides, as well as increased resistance towards traditional pest removal methods.
The aforementioned study, according to Mid Day Daily, was centred on comparing insecticide effectiveness when applied to isolated bed bug specimens or to ones coming from Michigan and Cincinnati, notorious for their resistance to insecticides. The main focus in terms of using insecticide was neonicotinoid pesticides.
It was not a surprise that the isolated specimens could not resist the very small amount of neonicotinoid insecticides in the form of 0.3 nanograms of acetamiprid applied by the researchers as they died almost immediately. On the contrary, bed bugs from Michigan and Cincinnati required the administration of 10,000 nanograms before they would start dying.
In order for the research team to see if this resistance is spread to other substances, they applied imidacloprid as well. Isolated insect took 2.3 nanograms while the others took 1,064 for Michigan bed bugs and 365 for the Cincinnati ones.
Bed bugs’ resistance to insecticides can be blamed primarily on how we continue to apply only one type of insecticides. This enables them to develop resistance towards the insecticides. By consistently using only one type of pesticide on bed bugs, they become genetically modified in order to survive in harsh environments, thereby transmitting this resistance from one generation to another.
Due to the resistance level, scientists are now trying to come up with a new substance that could potentially wipe out bed bugs without having any adverse effect on your health and pets.
While bed bugs do not fly, they however, have the ability to move quickly over floors, mattresses, walls and ceilings; making it a bit difficult to sight them sometimes. They may find their way into your home through luggage, clothing, used beds, and other items.