Bed bug bite treatment available online today

In order to treat your bed bug bites, consult with one of our board-certified primary care doctors online today to learn how to decrease itching or inflammation. Get a new prescription to treat bed bug bites or refill an existing prescription today.*

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Prompt Bed Bug treatment

Reduce itching and burning

Effective prescriptions for Bed Bugs

*Prescriptions are provided at the doctor's discretion. Learn more about our controlled substances policy and how to save up to 80% with our prescription discount card. PlushCare doctors cannot treat all cases of bed bug bites. Our primary care physicians can conduct an initial evaluation of your symptoms but may need to refer you to a specialist or for in-person treatment. If you are experiencing life-threatening symptoms, seek emergency medical attention immediately.

Learn about bed bug bites

Bed bugs are small, reddish-brown, blood-sucking insects. Bed bugs hide in the cracks and crevices of beds, box springs, and bed frames.

Bed bug bites can happen on any area of skin exposed while sleeping. People who don't realize they have a bed bug infestation often misdiagnose their bites as other insect bites, such as mosquito bites. To confirm bed bug bites and get rid of an infestation, it's important to find and identify the bed bugs.

Bed bug bite causes

  • Bed bug infestations are the most common cause of bed bug bites. However, if you spend time with someone who has an infestation, you're also at risk of bites.

    If you wake up with red, clustered, itchy welts, you might have bed bugs. In addition, your risk of running into bed bugs is higher if you spend time in places where guests frequently come and go, such as hotel rooms, hospitals, or homeless shelters.

Bed bug bite symptoms

Bed bug bites appear red and swollen, with a dark spot at the center of each bite. Sometimes, bites may resemble a hive or welt.

  • Some other symptoms of bed bug bites include:

    • Itching and irritation worse in the morning

    • Bites arranged in lines or clusters, with multiple bites grouped together

    • Bites located on the face, neck, arms, hands, or other skin exposed while sleeping

    • Fluid-filled blisters

    • Blood stains on bed sheets from excessive scratching

    Some people have no reaction to bed bug bites, while others may experience an allergic skin reaction or skin infection. Talk to your doctor if you're experiencing severe itching, blisters, or hives.

How to treat bed bug bites

Most bites heal within a few weeks. Some over-the-counter remedies can help treat bed bug bites, including:

  • Over-the-counter steroid and anti-itch creams to decrease inflammation and itching

  • Oral antihistamines to reduce itching and burning

  • Over-the-counter pain relievers to relieve swelling and pain

In addition to OTC medications, applying an ice pack wrapped in a towel can help relieve symptoms. It's important to wash the bites with soap and water to prevent skin infections. Depending on your symptoms, your health care provider may also recommend medication to treat bed bug ailments:

  • Allergic reactions: Some people require an injection of an antihistamine, corticosteroid, or epinephrine to treat an allergic reaction.

  • Infections: Skin infections from bed bug bites are rare, but if they occur, they may require antibiotic treatment. If the infection is mild, your health care provider may recommend an OTC antiseptic medication.

  • Itching: A prescription oral antihistamine can help relieve itching from bites.

Bed bug bite medication

In many cases, the best bed bug bite medication is an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or lotion to relieve itching and reduce swelling. OTC antihistamine pills, such as Benadryl, can also help treat symptoms.

How to prevent bed bug bites

Bed bugs don't have wings. Instead of flying, they travel by hiding in items, such as upholstered furniture, clothing, blankets, and luggage. Because they can live for months without feeding, it's easy to accidentally bring bed bugs into your home without realizing it.

Fortunately, there are some basic steps you can take to prevent bed bugs:

  • Wash your bed sheets and other bedding using hot water

  • Regularly vacuum your mattress and box spring

  • Avoid storing items under your bed

  • Wash and dry your clothes after returning from any trip

  • Use luggage racks when traveling to keep your clothes off the floor

  • Store your clothing in vacuum-sealed bags when traveling

  • Carefully inspect secondhand furniture, clothing, or linen before bringing it home

When to see a doctor for bed bug bites

If home treatments or an OTC cream don’t improve your symptoms, make an appointment with a doctor.

In addition, if you experience a severe allergic reaction or develop an infection, seek medical attention.

Related conditions to bed bug bites

In some cases, it can take a few weeks to identify an infestation. Before realizing that the bites are part of a larger pattern, many people attribute them to other insects, such as mosquitoes or fleas. Some insect bites that resemble bed bug bites include:

  • Chiggers

    Bites from bed bugs and chiggers both appear as red, raised, inflamed spots. While bed bug bites appear in random clusters, chigger bites are typically grouped near tight-fitting clothing.

  • Bees

    Bee stings include an instant, sharp, burning pain at the sting site. In most cases, swelling and pain subside within a few hours.

  • Spiders

    Spiders leave distinct side-by-side puncture marks, while bed bug bites are small red dots with dark centers.

  • Fleas

    Fleas leave small red flea bites that cause intense itching. Flea bites are sometimes grouped in threes.

  • Mosquitoes

    Unlike bed bug bites, mosquito bites are often isolated. They tend to appear randomly over parts of the body that clothing does not cover.

  • Kissing bugs

    Like bed bugs, kissing bugs feed at night. They often leave clustered bite marks in one area, which can cause redness and swelling. Kissing bugs tend to bite around the mouth and eyes.

Bed bug bite treatment FAQs

  • How soon do symptoms of bed bug bites appear after exposure?

    Bed bug bites can take up to 14 days to develop, and some people never develop noticeable symptoms. According to Pest Control Technology, between 30 and 60 percent of people never develop reactions to bites.

    When symptoms do develop, bed bug bites tend to be:

    • Red and swollen, with a dark spot at the center

    • Arranged in lines or clusters

    • Itchy or burning

  • How often do bed bugs bite?

    Bed bugs may feed on humans up to three times per night. This typically leaves a distinct cluster of bites—a telltale sign that you have a bed bug infestation.

    However, bed bugs don't feed every single night, and they can go for several weeks without feeding. This can make it difficult to notice that there are bed bugs in your home.

  • Can bed bug bites make you sick?

    No, bed bug bites do not directly make humans sick. Bed bugs are not known to spread disease. When humans become ill after bed bug bites, the underlying cause is often related to an allergic reaction or skin infection.

    Most bed bug bites can be treated with at-home remedies and do not require medical treatment. However, dealing with an infestation can lead to significant anxiety and restless nights.

  • Do bed bugs stay on your skin after you shower?

    No, bed bugs cannot stay on your skin after you shower or bathe. Unlike fleas or lice, bed bugs don't infest your hair. Instead, bed bugs tend to live in mattresses, upholstered furniture, linen, or cracks in the walls.

  • What happens if bed bug bites go untreated?

    In some cases, untreated bed bug bites can trigger a skin reaction. Bed bug bites can also become infected from scratching, leading to scarring and other issues.

    If you notice bed bug bites, it's important to treat them early. At-home remedies, such as OTC antihistamines and steroid creams, can help reduce swelling and itching. If you experience an infection or allergic reaction, your health care provider may prescribe prescription antibiotics or antihistamines to treat your bites.

3 simple steps to request treatment for bed bug bites today

Step 1

Book a bed bug bite treatment appointment.

Book a same day appointment from anywhere.

Step 2

Talk to your medical provider regarding your bed bug bite symptoms.

Visit with a doctor on your smartphone or computer.

Step 3

Pick up a prescription to treat bed bug bites, if provided

We can send prescriptions to any local pharmacy.

Bed bug bite treatment pricing details

How pricing works

To request bed bug bite treatment and get a new or refill on your prescription, join our monthly membership and get discounted visits.

Paying with insurance



First month free



30 days of free membership

  • Same-day appointments 7 days a week

  • Unlimited messages with your Care Team

  • Prescription discount card to save up to 80%

  • Exclusive discounts on lab tests

  • Free memberships for your family

  • Cancel anytime

Visit price with insurance

Often the same as an office visit. Most patients with in-network insurance pay $30 or less!

  • We accept these insurance plans and many more:

    • Humana
    • Aetna
    • Cigna

Paying without insurance



First month free



30 days of free membership

  • Same-day appointments 7 days a week

  • Unlimited messages with your Care Team

  • Prescription discount card to save up to 80%

  • Exclusive discounts on lab tests

  • Free memberships for your family

  • Cancel anytime

Visit price without insurance

Initial visits are $129.

Book an appointment

If we're unable to treat you, we'll provide a full refund.


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PlushCare content is reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, nutritionists, and other healthcare professionals. Learn more about our editorial standards and meet the medical team. The PlushCare site or any linked materials are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment.