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Bed bug reports sporadic, only in hotels

After a dozen Beijing families recently called authorities to help deal with bed bugs, Shanghai health officials said that bed bugs are detected sporadically in the city every year, years after the pest's virtual eradication.

All cases of bed bugs in recent years were detected in hotels, and they are probably carried there by travelers, said Leng Peien, director of the Shanghai Center for Disease Control and Prevention's sector control department.

Bed bugs are parasitic insects that feed on blood. The bugs, which are usually active at night, are likely to stay in warm houses and especially near or inside beds and bedding or other sleeping areas.

Bed bug bites can lead to skin rashes and allergic symptoms. Being bitten over a long time can cause serious conditions like anemia and insomnia, and are dangerous for those with weak immune systems and children.

Doctors recommend that people with skin rashes get medical treatment.

Bed bugs were prevalent in Shanghai in 1950s and 1960s, greatly annoying local people. The parasites were almost eradicated after the city carried out campaigns to spray pesticides in neighborhoods.

Spraying for the parasites and washing bedding in hot water and putting it out in the sun can kill bed bugs. Good hygiene is important in preventing bed bugs, experts said.


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