Are Carpet Beetles Actually Dangerous?

Carpet beetles are another pest to worry about. They are small, crawly and able to fly, as well. But do they bite? In this article, we will try to give you the best answer to this question. Also, we will share with you if the little insects thread any other dangers.

Do Carpet Beetles Bite?

Мany people can barely notice the presence of the carpet beetles until it's too late. Very often humans find red rashes and are mislead that they might be bitten by bed bugs or fleas. When they spot the beetle they realise it’s none of them. But unlike bed bugs, carpet beetles don’t need blood to survive. Instead, the little menace includes a wide variety of sources rich in fibres. Carpet beetles feed mostly on animal products and their diet includes:

  • Hair;
  • Fur;
  • Dead skin;
  • Dandruff;
  • Dead insects;
  • Leather, cotton and other materials.

So, they are responsible for the damages on your carpets, rugs, clothes, upholstery, sheets etc. The truth is these bugs don’t bite humans. What caused the rash was that the carpet beetle larva poked you. Larvae are covered with sharp hair-like needles that you thought were carpet beetle bites. The case is that these spines poke the skin and if sensitive, they cause allergic reactions such as dermatitis, lymphadenopathy or rhinitis.

It’s not necessarily for the infection to occur to every person. For example, you may sleep with your partner and be both punctured by the carpet beetle larvae but only one of you to wake up covered with a rash.

Do Carpet Beetles Cause Any Other Harm?

very close macro image of a varied carpet beetle

In short, yes they can cause other damages.

As we said the larvae are the real menace but adult carpet beetles can cause problems, as well. These bugs are able to fly and get into the house through the windows and doors and are attracted to a food source. So, they will fly their way to the kitchen or pantry and hide there to lay their eggs because the larvae will need to be as close as possible to seeds, animal food or other rich in fibre sources.

The problem is that when carpet beetles get in touch with the food left unprotected, they will leave excrement and saliva. This leads to contamination of the food and poses health risks to people who swallow this food. The bacteria that enters the human body can lead to serious diseases. Also, the airborne fibres spread from the beetles can cause eye or respiratory tract irritation. Anyway, it takes years for people to become sensitive to the fibres.

Image by: Brian Tomlinson / License: CC BY 2.0

 

How to Prevent Carpet Beetles from Coming into Your House?

  • First and foremost, you should carefully inspect your property, both inside and outside. You have to look for any holes, cracks or other entry points. Right after you notice all cavities, it’s time to close them by using a sealant. Be very cautious, particularly around windows and doors where cables and pipes go through.
  • One of the most important things is to keep your home as clean as possible. Regularly vacuum and clean the dust from the furniture, carpets and leftovers on the countertop and pantries.
  • Always keep food away sealed and packed carefully or stored in the refrigerator.
  • Next step is to cover the vents that are another not well-known entry points.
  • Close windows and doors, attach screens and ensure they are in good shape.
  • Don’t let other insects get inside your property as carpet beetles feed on dead bugs as well. If you’ve tried anything but insects are still entering, call for professional pest control.
  • Keep rooms bright, as carpet beetles love tranquility and usually hide in dark corners.
  • Before taking new plants at home, make sure they are pest-free.

Conclusion

Getting rid of carpet beetles is a challenging battle due to the fact that the larvae stay out of your sight. Most commonly, you will notice the adults but this indicates that somewhere larvae are feeding on your belongings.

So, as it’s hard to get rid of carpet beetles by yourself, we recommend getting professional help and hiring a carpet beetles exterminator to completely eradicate the menace.

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Disclaimer

We share helpful information according to the professional background and know-how of the pest technicians. However, we don't provide any medical advice.

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