Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

Bed bugs or Allergic reaction to cat?

EvigilantEvigilant Registered User regular
edited February 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
First off, I've already called the exterminators (Orkin), they came and took a swab and I'm just waiting for their response.

For the past week and a half I've started to develop hives and rashes on my body. It started at the base of my neck, spread down the back, to my right chest wall (ribs), down my legs and now arms and hands. It hasn't spread as bad to the front side of my body as bad as it is on the backside.

I wash my sheets once a week, vacuum my room once a week, and overall I'm pretty clean about where I sleep. But after all of that, I'm still getting outbreaks of rashes/hives on the exposed parts of my body. I slept on top of my military poncho liner, something the cat has not touched, and the outbreaks seemed a lot more mild than it has in the past 2 weeks. My diet hasn't changed, I haven't eaten anything I'm not accustomed to, my stress level is pretty mild, and my cigarette smoking habit hasn't changed at all.

I started being best friends with benadryl, and I've noticed that 1) the hives/rashes die down and 2) after hours away from my room, the hives/rashes die down as well. The only problem is that after 3 days, I started getting swelling in my throat, so I stopped taking benadryl.

What say you H/A? I'm honestly torn between if I want it to be bed bugs or an allergy to my roommates cat. On the one hand, bed bugs are nasty and horrible and the more expensive of the two but on the other hand, I don't want my roommate to have to give up his cat.

Evigilant on
"Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace." - General Dwight D. Eisenhower
Google+ Profile Origin: 13Evigilant Steam: Evigilant

Posts

  • Macro9Macro9 Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Throw a white or lightly colored sheet over where you sleep. Give it a few days and see if little black marks show up on it. If there are some then that's from bedbugs.

    I would not change you sleeping habits just in case. They will follow their food source and spread around.

    In the mean time take a flashlight and look around every little nook and cranny where you sleep for bedbugs. Google what they look like in case you're not familiar.

    Do the hives follow your major veins/arteries? They'll start at your legs and feet as the colony or hive grows. They work their way up as more and more of them feed. It takes some time to develop a reaction to them.

    Have you had trouble sleeping as well? They tend to mess with peoples sleeping habits.

    Good luck and pray they aren't bedbugs. They're a pain in the ass to deal with.

    bO0v7.png
  • Bliss 101Bliss 101 Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I'm not sure bedbugs and cat allergy are the only two possibilities here.

    Are the symptoms mostly symmetric on the limbs, ie. do they tend to show up around the same region of both limbs at the same time? A symmetric reaction would be less likely to be bedbugs, and more probably a sign of systemic inflammation of some kind: an allergic reaction, an infection (tooth infection, common cold, stomach infection...); or something that makes the body think it's susceptible to infection, like constant scratches and bruises or biting your fingers. Any kind of an autoimmune disorder (celiac disease in my case, for example) can cause these symptoms as well. Simply sweating can trigger hives in some people. Then again, it's apparently pretty common that the root cause can't be identified at all (and many of the possible causes are certainly impossible to self-diagnose), and often the symptoms just disappear on their own within a few weeks at most. Regardless of the cause, the symptoms are commonly worse when you're resting, for some reason.

    Even if it's an allergic reaction, it's not necessarily because of the cat, because in most cases a reaction to cat allergens would start with inflammation of your eyes and nose. I think your best bet is to get tested for common allergies. It'd suck to get rid of the cat only to find out that it wasn't causing the symptoms after all.

    MSL59.jpg
  • ceresceres Humming hallelujah in the dark Lost with a compass in the fogSuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited January 2011
    Is the cat allowed in your room? If so, wash/vacuum everything again and then try keeping it out for about a week and see if that helps.

    It'll be just as quiet when I leave as it was when I first got here
    I don't expect anything.

    The avalanche has already started; it is too late for the pebbles to vote.
  • EvigilantEvigilant Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Great suggestions all around.

    I'll make an appointment with the VA to see if it is an allergy and what it might be. Just re-washed all my beddings and vacuumed my room once more and kept the cat out all day.

    So we'll see how that goes.

    @Macro9: yea, my sleeping habits are shit in general though. I stay up too long, get too little sleep, and then at the end of the week, crash horribly. I can't blame that on the possibility of bed bugs though, it's been like this for years. I have an appointment with the VA for a sleep study because I have difficulty just falling asleep, and I have restless legs. Yay for VA benefits.

    "Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace." - General Dwight D. Eisenhower
    Google+ Profile Origin: 13Evigilant Steam: Evigilant
  • OnTheLastCastleOnTheLastCastle and you're not happy, but you're funny and I'm tripping over my joyRegistered User regular
    edited January 2011
    bed bugs tend to bite in triangle patterns. they don't just bite all over your body at once. putting down a white sheet and looking for black marks is good advice.

    Allergies can develop out of nowhere. You may want to call a nurse hotline and talk about what you can do, and/or plan to visit a doctor. This sounds a lot more like an allergy than bed bugs, which kind of look like zits or bug bites rather than rashes and hives.

    edit: In my mind, bug bites are more raised up than hives. Which are fairly flat, but pissed off looking just the same. In case I wasn't being clear. The bed bug bites raise up because they inject an anti-coagulant that people are kind of allergic to. I believe mosquitos are the same.

    I'm a published writer and have a very unique and interesting writing style. I'm also sharp and witty. My profile is well-written and hilarious. My messages are likewise brilliant. And I've been doing this stuff for...four or five years. I know what "works" in terms of good internet dating writing. "Works" in the sense of leading to a "date" with a human female.
  • E.CoyoteE.Coyote Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    You could be allergic to your laundry detergent, or the residue from the one your roommate uses.

  • Dr. FrenchensteinDr. Frenchenstein Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    My GF had a bad reaction to bed bug bites when i had them, they were raised and angry looking where my reaction was just red spots that were barely itchy. pull up your mattress if you can and look in the corners, you will probably see black marks(waste) and dead bed bug husks if you have them. They are a nightmare, so i hope for your sake that is not the case.

  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Is the cat new?

    I'm throwing my vote into laundry detergent/fabric softener. In fact, is anything different lately?

  • EvigilantEvigilant Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Well, now I don't think it's either bed bugs or a cat allergy. The reasoning is: 1) no black marks showed up on the white sheet; 2) my eyes and nose aren't red and itchy, and the cat has been locked out of my room for 2 days now; and 3) The hives changed locations and spread more. It's just about disappeared from my thighs and calves, but it's more prevalent on my abs, chest wall, back, arms, hands and palms. Huge swaths of them too. It really hurts in the palms because it's causing swelling and tenderness.

    Which speaking of which, a few days ago happened in my knees. Itchyness, hives, swelling, joint pain.

    It's probably an allergy, I'm just not sure to what. I've never had an allergic reaction to anything in my life before (I'm 27 now). I've changed my laundry detergent/fabric softener when they first started appearing, changed my shampoo and body wash, re-washed the sheets and re-vacuumed the room, and it still looks like it's getting worse. It only died out on Saturday night, after a copious amount of liquor...but then in the morning they reappeared with a vengeance.

    The worst part of it: since I couldn't sleep last night, I'm real close to maxing out on benadryl for the day (according to this pack, I'm not supposed to take more than 12 in 24hrs, and I've had 8 or 10).

    Onward, to the doctor!

    @Bowen: We've had the cat for about 2-3months now. I figured if I was allergic it would've manifested earlier, especially since I used to let the cat sleep all over my room and bed.

    edit: And lips! My lips are swollen now. Fantastic.

    "Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace." - General Dwight D. Eisenhower
    Google+ Profile Origin: 13Evigilant Steam: Evigilant
  • ceresceres Humming hallelujah in the dark Lost with a compass in the fogSuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited February 2011
    It could also be stress. I do actually get hives just from being stressed out.

    It'll be just as quiet when I leave as it was when I first got here
    I don't expect anything.

    The avalanche has already started; it is too late for the pebbles to vote.
  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    The swollen lips means get to a doctor. Hives itself is usually a contact dermatitis thing, hives with a swollen anything means it's probably angioedema. This can be problematic if not treated. So, get there sooner rather than later if you can, I know you said you would but I'm just highlighting that you should definitely do it.

  • EggyToastEggyToast Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I had hives and "bites" all over my body, and I found out then that a friend of mine did as well, and both seemed to be from bedding.

    We washed our bedding in HOT water, using one of the "free" detergents that contain no fragrance or dyes.

    Solved the problem for both of us. We never figured out if it was an allergy to the detergents, or if we had gotten into something we were allergic to and then spread all over our sheets. This happened about 800 miles apart, too, so it wasn't something local either.

    || Flickr — || PSN: EggyToast
Sign In or Register to comment.