Can Bed Bugs Live on Air Mattress?

Bed bug infestations cause a lot of stress and discomfort to homeowners all over the world. They live in your home – most frequently your bedroom – and attack at night, while you’re asleep. One of the places bed bugs seem to like most are beds, especially mattresses.

In trying to take care of this issue, many people choose to replace their old beds with air mattresses. They are considerably less expensive and easier to handle, but their use prompts another question: can bed bugs live on an air mattress?

The short answer is no, you are highly unlikely to find bed bugs living on your air mattress or hiding inside of it. To be able to respond when someone asks the question “can bed bugs live on an air mattress,” it is necessary to understand where bed bugs come from, how and when they most often attack, which parts of your home they’re most likely to hide in, how to spot them, and finally, how to get rid of them.

We have gathered some important bits of information that will help you to solve your bed bug problem and clean your bedroom before setting up your new air mattress. After you’ve read it, you’ll see why the answer to the question “can bed bugs live on an air mattress” is a resounding no.

Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?

Bed bugs don’t just appear out of nowhere and take over your bedroom. If you have bed bugs in your home, you’ve probably brought them over from some other place you’ve been to recently.

Perhaps you picked them up in a particularly unsanitary hotel room, a movie theater, or somebody else’s house. As soon as they spot you, they will hop onto your clothes and settle there until you get back home.

Once you’ve unknowingly welcomed them to your bedroom, bed bugs will find a convenient hiding place. They’ll easily find their way into your cupboard, a hole in the wall of your room, your bed, and yes – your mattress. We’re talking about conventional mattresses here, not air mattresses.

Bed bugs will dig a tiny hole in the fabric of your mattress and wait inside of it until the night. Then they’ll come out at night and attack you, leaving behind itchy spots and red marking on your skin.

So, if they can live on a regular mattress, can bed bugs live on an air mattress, too? Not really, because the fabric your air mattress is made from is designed to be protected against punctures to prevent it from deflating. The inside of your air mattress is filled with air, whereas a regular mattress has some type of foam or a sponge in the middle. That makes it easier for bed bugs to hide there and prepare for an attack.

How Do I Find Out If I Have Bed Bugs?

The presence of bed bugs in your home and your bedroom is not as easy to detect as it might seem.

Waking up at night feeling itchy only to find red markings on your skin in the morning is surely the most obvious way to know that you have bed bugs. But even if you haven’t felt them attacking you in a while, they might still be there.

Bed bugs are very tough and can live for at least a year without attacking their prey. To be able to treat the infestation, you should inspect your bedroom every once in a while.

If you notice any small particles that look like dust but aren’t dust, they might be eggshells or skin flakes bed bugs tend to leave behind. Sometimes your furniture and your curtains will have small stains on them as if someone accidentally spilled a tiny bit of red or brown ink on them.

These most often turn out to be either bed bug excrements or the traces they leave when you crush them while sleeping.

Make sure to also check your sheets for signs of bed bugs. While the answer to the question “can bed bugs live on air mattress” is negative, they could potentially be attacking you at night and leaving behind tracks on your sheets. If you notice any of these signs, it’s time to treat your home for bed bugs.

How Can I Get Rid of Bed Bugs?

If bed bugs have already infested your home, your best bet is to call pest control and ask them to come over and solve your problem. But even if you don’t have an ongoing problem with these insects, you can take some steps to prevent them from coming to your house and attacking you at night.

As we’ve already explained, the answer to the question “can bed bugs live on air mattress” is a no. However, not all air mattresses are the same; some less expensive models utilize cheap materials that don’t provide the same level of protection you’d expect to find in a slightly pricier air mattress.

To add an extra protective layer to your airbed, consider wrapping it up in a mattress protector. They are soft and comfortable but also built to protect your mattress from all health hazards, including bed bugs.

Another reason why we responded with a no to the question “can bed bugs live on air mattress” is because air mattresses come wrapped in nylon and plastic. But if you choose to buy a used piece of furniture, make sure to inspect it thoroughly before you set it up in your bedroom.

You don’t know where it’s been or whether the previous owners have kept it clean and tidy at all times. Because of this, the first thing you should do is to check it for any sign of bed bugs.

So, Can Bed Bugs Live on Air Mattress?

After you’ve read this, you can see why the answer to the question “can bed bugs live on air mattress” is definitely a no. However, bed bugs can still find a hiding place in other parts of your bedroom. To make sure that doesn’t happen, you should clean your home regularly. Inspect all used furniture before you set it up and every now and then check your bed and sheets for signs of bed bugs.

5 thoughts on “Can Bed Bugs Live on Air Mattress?”

  1. We have been dealing with bedbugs for 2 years, have tried everything under the sun. But having our place exterminated is to expensive. We went and bought a good air mattress that sits 24 inches off the floor. And guess what. Yes bedbugs … We can’t seem to get rid of. We check our bed every night and find from 20 to 50 bedbugs every night. What can we do to get relief….

  2. Hi Cheryl,
    I’m sorry to hear about your problem. You’re right, an exterminator can be very expensive. Take a look at this complete bed bug killer kit.

    The manufacturer claims that ” It ERADICATES bed bug eggs, nymphs and adult bed bugs in every nook and cranny of 1 full room, guaranteed.

    Honestly, I’ve never had to use this product, so I can’t really say how effective it is. People who have purchased this product are giving it some very good reviews on Amazon.

    If you decide to purchase this product, please let us know how effective it is, so we can recommend it to our readers.

  3. In response to your “bed bugs can’t live on an air mattress,” you should update your information because they can! I’ve living proof of this as I write this. Now granted the air mattress I purchased has some sort of fiber material either sprayed on the sides of it and they just crawl right up it and leave their calling card all over it. Have tried scrubbing it, spraying it with bug killers and they are like the neverending pest who won’t go away. If you are talking about the sides of air mattresses without anything but the smooth plastic, then I will agree with your answer. I’ve been fighting these for going on 2 years and since “burning the place down isn’t an option,” the other people living in the apartment building would frown on this, it seems my next course of action is to get rid of the mattress I’ve got and get one without any sort of cosmetics on the outside other than just the area slept on.
    What’s worse, I am that 1 in 10,000 who has reactions to their bites but at least now I have the answer to my question as to the mistake made when I purchased it.

  4. Thank you for your response, Willis. You’ve added value to this post and I appreciate that. I’ve never lived through this problem as you have. Your advice to update this post will be taken. Consider your email the first step to doing just that.

  5. There are bedbugs on my mattresses. I am throwing away mine and buying an air mattress. And purchase some strong chemicals to kill their asses. I will not tolerate any bedbugs biting me at night.


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