Having a bed bug infestation can be devastating both emotionally and financially. Not only are bed bugs very difficult to get rid of, they can physically bite you and cause skin irritation. Home remedies often don't work and can leave you with a larger infestation of bed bugs over time. Here are some ways you can make the eradication process a successful one.
Is It Bed Bugs Or Something Else?
Like other pests that can invade your home, bed bugs aren't always visibly noticeable. At first, you may not even notice that you have bed bugs in your home. They enter your home through physical items such as furniture and clothing. Cimex Lectularius—commonly referred to as bed bugs—earned their nickname because they tend to live within areas where people sleep. They need human blood for survival. Bed bugs are mainly nocturnal so they focus on their prey at night when they are sleeping. If you wake up in the morning to find small bites in one or more areas on your skin, followed by a slight swelling, it could be bed bugs. Look around the bed and room for reddish-brown flat bugs around 5mm in size. Their favorite hideouts are in between the seams in mattresses, behind wallpaper and in the baseboards of your bedroom.
Remove Items From Your Home
Getting rid of bed bugs is extremely challenging because of the habitat they are accustomed to. They thrive in room temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees but can survive in much colder temperatures. Bugs can live up to 10 months and quickly reproduce. They can also live several weeks without feeding and move rapidly if they are disturbed—making them difficult to spray or treat. If your infestation is extreme, removing items and disposing of them properly can help aid in eradication.
Treating Your Home
It may take more than one more visit from a pest control specialist to control the entire bed bug problem. The reason for this is that many species of bed bugs are resistant to the chemicals used to kill them. They are also masters of disguise and can hide in almost any location including picture frames, carpet, wall outlets and cracks in your wood floors. Vacuum every square surface of your home before and after a pest control company (such as Midwest Exterminating) has visited. For severe cases, a professional high heat method may be used. The entire home will be blasted with heat to completely kill the bugs.
Avoid Contact With More Bugs
Once your home has been cleared of bugs, make sure you don't bring more back home. Some tips to keep in mind include:
- Avoid buying used furniture, especially mattresses
- Be careful when visiting homes that have a known bed bug infestation
- Check your luggage for bugs when returning from traveling from hotels or public transportation
- Thoroughly wash your pets if they've been in areas where bed bugs are prevalent
It's always important to disinfect items thoroughly if you suspect they've been in contact with bed bugs
Contacting a professional pest control removal company is one way to ensure that the bed bugs are properly identified and the right steps are taken in order to completely eradicate the problem.