Ants Crawling on Me While I Sleep: How to Eliminate the Unwanted Guests

Let me take you back to a night that inspired today’s topic. I was cozily tucked into bed, ready to drift off into a blissful slumber, when my tranquility was suddenly shattered by an unexpected and unsettling surprise—ants crawling on me while I sleep!

It’s a perplexing and disconcerting situation that left me scratching my head in confusion. How on earth did these tiny invaders find their way into my bed when I meticulously kept my room clean and free of crumbs and spills?  Talk about anxiety!

If you’re in the same predicament, stick around. By the end of this article, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge needed to reclaim your bed and enjoy a restful night’s sleep—free from the unwelcome company of ants!

Why Are There Ants on My Bed?

Ants are remarkably resourceful creatures, and when it comes to infiltrating our beds and bedrooms, they have several compelling reasons for doing so. Understanding these factors can help you identify potential attractants and take proactive measures to keep them at bay. 

Here are some reasons why ants are attracted to beds and bedrooms:

Ants Crawling on Me While I Sleep: How to Eliminate the Unwanted Guests

Foraging for Food 

Ants are opportunistic foragers—even the smallest crumbs or food particles can be enticing to them. 

When you indulge in snacks or meals in bed, you may unknowingly leave behind tiny morsels that serve as a feast for ants. Spilled drinks or food wrappers around the bed can also attract ants searching for sustenance.

Moisture and Water 

Certain ant species are attracted to moisture-rich or humid environments, and bedrooms can sometimes offer just that. Spilled drinks, leaky pipes, or damp spots in the room can draw moisture-seeking ants into our sleeping quarters.

Sweet Scents

Certain ant species, such as sugar ants, are drawn to sweet scents. If you have spilled sugary drinks or had fruits in your bed, their enticing fragrance could attract ants seeking their next meal.

Scent Trails From Previous Visits

Ants are known for their excellent sense of smell. Once they find a food source or a potential nesting site, they leave behind scent trails for their fellow colony members to follow. 

If ants have previously discovered a food source near the bed or a way to access it, they’ll continue using these scent trails to come back, making it a persistent issue.

Warmth and Shelter  

Beds provide warmth and shelter, especially in colder climates or during certain seasons. Ants may seek refuge from adverse weather conditions or use the cozy crevices of mattresses or bedding as nesting sites.

Electrical Appliances  

Bedrooms often have electrical appliances like lamps, chargers, or clock radios, which can generate heat. Some ant species are attracted to electrical equipment and might find their way into the bedroom through these items.

Plants or Greenery  

If your bedroom has windows or access to the outdoors, ants may be attracted to any nearby plants or greenery. You might just end up like me with ants crawling on me while I sleep.

Certain ant species are drawn to the honeydew produced by aphids and other plant-dwelling insects, which can lead ants inside as they forage for this sugary substance.

Ants Crawling on Me While I Sleep: How to Eliminate the Unwanted Guests

Neighboring Infestations 

Ants can travel far in search of resources. If neighboring areas or rooms have an ant infestation, it’s possible for ants to migrate and find their way into your bed.

Related: Sleep Hygiene Checklist to Get Rid of Poor Sleep

Is It Dangerous to Have Ants in My Bed?

Having ants in your bed may not pose an immediate and direct threat to your health, but it can lead to certain risks depending on the type of ant species and the extent of the infestation. 

Here are some considerations regarding the potential dangers of having ants in your bed:

Allergies and Asthma Triggers

Ants can produce and leave behind debris, including body parts, feces, and pheromones. These particles may become airborne and trigger allergies or asthma symptoms in sensitive individuals, especially if the infestation is significant.

Ant Bites and Stings

While most common household ants are not known for aggressive behavior, certain species can bite or sting if they feel threatened. 

Ant bites and stings can cause discomfort, redness, and localized swelling. In rare cases, some individuals may experience severe allergic reactions to ant venom.  Here are some common types of ants that may bite you while you sleep:

  • Carpenter Ants: Carpenter ants are relatively large ants known for nesting in wood, including furniture and structural elements of buildings. They primarily feed on insects and plant materials, but they can bite when they feel threatened or disturbed. 
  • Pharaoh Ants: Pharaoh ants are tiny, light yellow to reddish-brown ants that often build their nests in hidden places, including wall voids and crevices. While pharaoh ants do not sting, they can bite when they feel threatened or their nest is disturbed.
  • Odorous House Ants: Odorous house ants get their name from the coconut-like odor they emit when crushed. They are small, dark brown to black ants that commonly invade homes and buildings in search of food. They can bite if provoked or handled.
  • Little Black Ants: Little black ants may accidentally come into contact with sleeping individuals while foraging for food. They can deliver bites if disturbed or feeling threatened, though their bites are generally not harmful or painful to humans.

Sleep Disruptions

Having ants crawling on you while you sleep can be extremely unsettling and disruptive to your rest. The constant fear of being bitten or experiencing discomfort can lead to sleep disturbances and insomnia.

Risk of Secondary Infections

Scratching ant bites can break the skin and potentially lead to secondary infections, especially if the area becomes contaminated with bacteria.

Contamination of Bedding

Ants can carry bacteria and pathogens, and their presence in your bed may contaminate your bedding and sleeping environment.

Attracting Other Pests

Ants leave behind chemical trails for other ants to follow, and if left unchecked, this can lead to an increased ant population.  

How to Get Rid of Ants in Your Bed and Bedroom

Getting rid of ants in your bed and bedroom requires a comprehensive approach that focuses on eliminating attractants, blocking entry points, and employing effective ant control methods. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you reclaim your sleeping space:

Step 1: Clean Your Bedroom Thoroughly

Start by removing food crumbs, spills, or other potential food sources that may attract ants. Pay attention to areas near your bed, under furniture, and along baseboards. Vacuum the floors and wipe down surfaces to eliminate any ant-attracting residues. 

Follow these cleaning tips:

  • Remove and Wash Bedding: Strip the bed of all bedding, including bedsheets, pillowcases, and any other linens. Launder these items in hot water with regular laundry detergent. High temperatures will not only kill any ants or eggs present but also remove any food residues or pheromone trails that might be attracting ants to your bed.
  • Vacuum the Mattress: Use a vacuum cleaner with a hose attachment to thoroughly clean your mattress. Pay close attention to seams, crevices, and any folds where ants might be hiding. Vacuuming will help remove any ants, eggs, or debris from the mattress surface.
  • Clean Under Furniture: Move any furniture near your bed, like nightstands or chairs, and clean underneath them. Ants may seek shelter or food in these areas, so be thorough in your cleaning efforts.
  • Wipe Down Surfaces: Using a damp cloth or cleaning wipes, wipe down all surfaces in your bedroom, including nightstands, dressers, and shelves. This will help eliminate any food particles or spills that might attract ants.
  • Declutter Your Bedroom: Clutter provides hiding spots for ants, making it easier for them to establish colonies near your bed. Reduce clutter by organizing your belongings and removing unnecessary items from your bedroom.
  • Keep Trash Cans Sealed: Ensure that all trash cans in your bedroom have tightly sealed lids. Dispose of trash regularly to prevent attracting ants with leftover food or organic waste.
  • Clean Under the Bed: If possible, move your bed and clean it underneath it. Vacuum any dust or debris that might have accumulated in this area.

Step 2: Seal Entry Points

Ants can enter through even the tiniest cracks and gaps in walls, windows, and doors. Seal these entry points using caulk or weather stripping to prevent further ant invasions.

Step 3: Use Ant Repellents and Barriers

Ants Crawling on Me While I Sleep: How to Eliminate the Unwanted Guests
Angry woman spaying insectide in her bedroom

Consider using natural ant repellents around your bed and bedroom. Certain scents, such as citrus peels, vinegar, or essential oils like peppermint or eucalyptus, can deter ants. You can also create barriers using substances like diatomaceous earth or baby powder to keep ants away from your sleeping area.

Step 4: Set Up Homemade Ant Traps

Make simple traps by mixing borax or boric acid with sugary substances like honey or sugar water. Place these traps near ant trails or suspected entry points, but keep them out of reach of children and pets.

Step 5: Keep Food Secure

Avoid eating in bed, and ensure that any food consumed in the bedroom is properly stored and sealed in containers. Ants are attracted to even the smallest food particles, so preventing access to their food source is crucial.

Step 6: Trim Vegetation

If your bedroom has access to the outdoors, consider trimming vegetation away from windows and walls. This can help reduce the chances of ants finding their way inside from nearby plants.

Step 7: Call Professional Pest Control

If the ant infestation persists despite your efforts, or if you’re dealing with aggressive ant species like fire ants, consider seeking professional pest control services. Pest control experts can identify the ant species and implement targeted treatments to eliminate the infestation effectively.

Ants Crawling on Me While I Sleep: Wrapping Up 

Remember that preventing ant infestations is not only a matter of comfort but also a concern for health and safety.  While most ant bites are not harmful, they can cause irritation, discomfort, and even potential allergies in some cases. 

Maintaining a clean bedroom can significantly reduce the risk of ant-related health issues and ensure a peaceful night’s sleep, free from disruptions caused by these tiny invaders.

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Easy Sleep Guide

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