"Don't let the bed bugs bite" is an old saying that you have probably heard but probably haven't been serious about.
For many around the Wabash Valley, the old saying is becoming a warning as the bed bug problem seems to grow by the day.
Many assume bed bugs are only found in dirty places, but that is just simply not true.
Pest control companies say they are busier than ever trying to remove infestations of bed bugs from homes and businesses.
It is important that if you spot one, you treat it immediately before it blooms out out control.
"Bed bugs feed on humans. They are blood suckers," says Ed Ice, Action Pest Control.
People often think, "it won't happen to me", when it comes to getting bed bugs.
But these pests can quickly travel from one home to another before you even know they are there, "anywhere people are, hotels, unfortunately medical facilities, movie theaters," says Ice.
One man in the Valley says he rented a home that a pest company suspects was already infested, then he rented furniture that he later learned brought in even more bugs. "There was feces, dead skins, everything like that. Even babies that were just born crawling around," he says.
Before he knew it the nasty pests had taken over his home, "we started looking at the mattresses and when we started lifting up the edges of the mattresses, they were so thick on the edges you could grab a handful."
The CDC says the bugs are not poisonous, but for some their bites leave behind itchy bumps that cause severe discomfort. These bugs don't discriminate where they camp out, "we have treated million dollar homes. We have treated 10 thousand dollar homes," says Ice.
It is important that when you travel somewhere that is heavily visited by large numbers of people that you do a quick check before you unpack. "Bed bugs like to hide and camp out in creases, cracks, and crevasses. Occasionally you will see one just pop it's little head up on a flat surface. More times than not they are going to be in the beads of mattresses, wood frames, head boards," says Ice.
The bugs can be treated chemically or by a professional heat treatment.
But there isn't much that can heal your paranoia once you've experienced an infestation.
"Anywhere you go, you are gonna think about those and you're gonna be scared."
Action Pest Control says Terre Haute and other surrounding areas are experiencing large issues with bed bugs.
Checking your bed every time you wash your sheets can be a good way to ensure you are avoiding an infestation.
If you have been somewhere that you later find out has bed bugs, a good trick is to take all your travel clothing including shoes or cloth bags and throw them in the dryer on high for at least 35 minutes. That way if you are carrying any bugs or eggs the heat will kill them so you don't track them in your house.