Difference Between Bed Bug and Tick

Insect bites are common in the everyday lives of people. Even though the symptoms are mostly the same from almost all common insects, symptoms from some specific insects can also give rise to serious problems.

Two such organisms are bed bugs and ticks. Both of them are different in almost everything but are still often confused with each other.

Bed Bug vs Tick

The main difference between bed bugs and ticks is that bed bugs feed blood from human beings whereas ticks feed blood from mostly mammals and birds. Furthermore, bed bugs are insects and ticks belonging to the family of arachnids. Additionally, the two differ in almost every characteristic.

Bed Bug vs Tick

Bed Bugs are insects that feed on the blood of human beings, mostly during the night. These insects are oval in shape with 6 legs, reddish-brown in color, and about 8 millimeters in size.

The bites of these insects can result in various health impacts including itching, skin rashes, skin blistering, and allergies, etc.

Ticks are parasitic anthropods that feed on the blood of mammals and birds but rarely affect human beings. They are mostly found in humid climates.

These arachnids are flat-oval in shape with 8 legs, dark brown in color, and about 4 millimeters in size.

The bites of these arachnids can cause mammals and birds to experience loss of appetite, lethargy, high fever, etc.

Comparison Table Between Bed Bug and Tick

Parameters of ComparisonBed BugTick
HabitatIndoors.Outdoors.
Host It feeds on human beings.It feeds on animals.
SizeAbout 8 millimeters in size.About 4 millimeters in size.
ColorIt is reddish-brown in color.It is dark brown in color.
ShapeIt is oval-shaped.It is pear-shaped.

What is Bed Bug?

Bed Bugs are insects that feed on the blood of human beings, mostly during the night. These insects are oval in shape with 6 legs, reddish-brown in color, and about 8 millimeters in size.

The bites of these insects can result in various health impacts including itching, skin rashes, skin blistering, and allergies, etc.

Bed Bug bites are caused by namely two species of these insects namely Cimex lectularius, which is the most common bed bug, and Cimex hemipterus, which is usually found in tropical areas.

The infestation is more common in areas of high density and closed spaces. Nevertheless, the symptoms are not known to develop into any infectious disease.

Bed bugs spread through carriers like old furniture, crawling into personal items and being carried from there, etc. Treatment for bed bug bites depends on the symptoms.

However, it is more important to eliminate the insect from infected areas. Since bed bugs only stay in dark places and can survive for about 70 days without feeding, finding them in a room is a difficult task.

Heating the room at high temperatures, vacuuming closely, using pesticides, etc., are a few of the ways to get rid of bed bugs.

What is Tick?

Ticks are parasitic anthropods that feed on the blood of mammals and birds but rarely affect human beings. They are mostly found in humid climates.

Unlike bed bugs, ticks are arachnids and not insects. These arachnids are flat-oval in shape with 8 legs, dark brown in color, and about 4 millimeters in size.

The bites of these arachnids can cause mammals and birds to experience loss of appetite, lethargy, high fever, etc.

Tick bites are caused by two types of major families namely the Ixodidae or hard ticks, and the Argasidae, or soft ticks. Ticks locate their hosts by sensing body heat, breath, noises, and vibrations, etc.

Ticks also relocate concerning the location of hosts. The tick species are widely distributed throughout the world.

Their habitat includes areas with warm and humid climates, as these arachnids need moisture in the air to undergo metamorphosis.

Since ticks can relocate and survive for months without feeding blood, they are highly spread.

Furthermore, ticks carry many serious diseases including Mountain Spotted Fever, Lyme Disease, etc. Treatment of a regular tick bite includes removing the tick immediately and providing supplemental oxygen to the animal.

However, for other serious diseases, treatments vary concerning the symptoms.

Main Differences Between Bed Bug and Tick

  1. Bed bugs affect human beings whereas Ticks affect animals
  2. Bed bugs are found indoors in closed spaces whereas ticks are found outdoors in grasses and plants.
  3. Bed bugs do not cause serious diseases whereas ticks are major spreaders of diseases.
  4. Bed bugs are repetitive biters whereas ticks bite only once and then fall off the host.
  5. Bed bugs are larger in size and have 6 legs. On the other hand, ticks are smaller in size and have 8 legs.
Difference Between Bed Bug and Tick

Conclusion

Bed bugs and ticks are very common these days. Many people get bitten by them and usually don’t know of the causing organism as the symptoms are almost similar for most people.

Itching, redness, bumps, and blistering, etc., are a few of the most common symptoms.

Nevertheless, it is important to take preventative measures as tick bites can lead to serious health problems including severe breathing problems.

When buying second-hand furniture, it is necessary to get it thoroughly cleaned followed by pesticides spray.

If in case an area gets populated with bed bugs, it should immediately be vacuumed and kept under high temperature for decontamination.

It is also recommended to consult a specialist if the symptoms of bed bug bites include anxiety, headaches, fevers, etc.

On the other hand, for ticks, regular checkups of pets are crucial as ticks are much more harmful to animals.

Even for human beings, if one is affected by a tick bite, removing the tick immediately and providing supplemental oxygen is necessary as it can cause breathing problems if the bite is severe.

People living in warm and humid climates should regularly get the living space diagnosed as ticks are more common in such conditions.

Even though the symptoms are mostly similar, bed bugs and ticks differ in almost everything else.

References

  1. https://journals.asm.org/doi/abs/10.1128/CMR.05015-11
  2. https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/abstract/19622901585
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