Getting Rid of Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are becoming more and more of a problem in homes all across the country. The general cleanliness of your home is not a factor in whether or not you get a bed bug infestation. However, proper treatment can mean the difference between a swift extermination of bed bugs and a prolonged infestation.

No matter what method is used for getting rid of bed bugs, it is important to enlist the help of a professional pest control company as soon as you notice bed bugs signs. Professional pest services have the expertise to know what insecticides or bed bugs spray is best to use in your home and whether or not other methods of getting rid of bed bugs are appropriate. Typically, the pest control company will use a combination of tactics to completely eliminate the bed bugs. Another advantage of the pest control service is that they will guarantee their work.

Pre-Treatment Procedures for Getting Rid of Bed Bugs

Before you have a pest control company come into your home to get rid of your bed bugs, there are some things that you need to do to prepare for bed bug treatments. First, you want to reduce clutter so that it will be easier for the professionals to perform a thorough inspection and know where to spray bed bug sprays. All bedding, stuffed animals, or toys should be put into plastic bags and laundered at a temperature of at least 120 degrees Fahrenheit to kill any bed bugs or eggs that might have caught a ride there. It would also be helpful to empty any drawers in your night stands or dressers.

Mattress Pads the Get Rid of Bed Bugs

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There are mattress and box spring covers that you can purchase that are meant to eliminate the spread of bed bugs. They get rid of bed bugs in two ways. First, they are thick and strong enough to keep insecticides and bed bugs spray inside. You spray the mattress or box spring and then cover them up with the mattress or box spring encasement. The second way they help to get rid of bed bugs is that they trap them inside and they bugs cannot find thee way out. You need to keep the mattress encasements on for at least one year in order to completely disrupt the bed bug life cycle. Professional pest control companies often guarantee their work for longer periods of time if you purchase mattress covers for them.

Bed Bugs Spray for Getting Rid of Bed Bugs

The treatment for getting rid of be bug used to be to spray any infested room with pesticide. Now that we know more about the effects of such products on the health of our family, the pesticides are used more judiciously. There are rules in place now that forbid the use of bed bugs spray on certain bedding and mattresses, but there are approved products as well. Bed bug sprays work in many different ways to get rid of your bedbug infestation. Some pesticides will kill bugs instantly while others only sterilize adult bugs so that they cannot lay new eggs. The latter method means you wil have to wait longer for the infestation to be over.

Using Steam to Get Rid of Bed Bugs

Steam at temperatures of over 120 degrees Fahrenheit is hot enough to kill bed bugs. The hot steam will also kill any eggs. This method is a popular one with professional pest control services, but it is tricky to implement. You must have a tight seal on any space where you are going to be fumigating with steam. The room must stay at above 120 degrees for an extended period of time. It can be difficult to maintain the hot temperature in an open space. Often the area of infestation will need to be separated from the rest of the room with plastic to create a kind of steam tent.

Freeze Treatment for Getting Rid of Bed Bugs

Other pest control services use the power of ice to kill bed bugs. Getting rid of bed bugs with cold temperatures is easier than using steam. The pest control technician will apply dry ice to any affected area and the cold temperatures will freeze both the bugs and the eggs effectively ending the infestation. Using steam and cold to kill bed bugs is a good first step, but you will need other protective measures to make sure that your bed bugs do not come back. That is where the spraying of certain bed bug sprays can come in handy.

Bed Bugs Signs

Of all the different kinds of pests that might infest your home, for some reason bedbugs is one of the most troublesome to homeowners. First of all, it is quite distressing to think about bugs crawling on you and biting you while you sleep. Second, they are very hard to get rid of and spread easily. Bed bugs are very resourceful at finding ways to hitch a ride into your home. You can bring them home from almost anywhere you find people. For example, bedbug infestations can be found in movie theaters, public transportation, libraries, retail stores, hotels, airplanes, hospitals, day cares, etc. In addition to being able to travel well, bedbugs can go up to two or three months without feeding so they are very illusive and hard to kill because they do not necessarily come out that often. Therefore, people want to do everything they can to avoid bringing bedbugs into their home in the first place and allowing them to stay for extended periods of time. That is why it is important to do regular checks for bedbugs at home and be diligent in hotels and motels in order to avoid bringing the bugs home. Remember that a bedbug infestation says nothing about your cleaning habits or personal hygiene. They are simply a parasite that is very common.

Bed Bug Bites

The first question most homeowners ask when they hear about bed bugs is “How do you know you have bed bugs?” Most people know it when they start to notice bites. Bedbug bites look very similar to a mosquito bites in that they are small red welts that are slightly raised. They usually appear in clusters or lines because bedbugs tend to stay in the same locations to bite over and over again. Many people afflicted with bed bug bites say that they itch constantly and are quite troublesome. As itchy and bothersome as the bites may be, bed bugs do not carry any diseases that we know of so their bites are relatively harmless.

Another one of the interesting things about bedbugs is that they administer an anesthetizing agent when they bite so that you do not feel it. If you start to wake up in the morning with bug bites that you cannot explain, then you might have a bed bug problem. However, not everyone reacts to bedbugs the same way. Some people do not get the welts or do not have any visible signs of being bitten. In that case, you might notice small spots of blood on your sheets or bedclothes that you cannot explain.

What to Look For When Searching for Bed Bugs

Because you may not notice or may not have signs of bed bug bites, it is also necessary to check your home for bedbugs occasionally. Bedbugs are called that for a reason, they tend to infest the area on or around your bed because that puts them in close proximity to their prey. So the beds in your home are the best place to start looking for bed bugs signs. I do an inspection every time I change the sheets because you need to remove all blankets and sheets from the bed anyway to do the inspection. Bedbugs like to live and travel in crevices and places where they can hide so you want to look at the seams in your mattress and box spring. You probably will not see the actual bugs, but rather their fecal waste which looks like brown speckling. Start at the head of the bed and inspect both the top and bottom seams on your mattress carefully. Bedbugs are attracted to heat and carbon dioxide which are both more prevalent at the head of your bed than at the foot so that is the most likely place to find evidence. Continue your inspection around each corner and all the way to the foot of the bed. You should also inspect that top seam of the box spring and the area where the box spring meets the bed frame.

While you have the bed linens off, you should take this opportunity to inspect the corner where the floor under your bed meets the wall for the same brown specks or the actual bed bugs. The bed bugs themselves are the same color as an apple seed and slightly smaller, but it is rare that you find the bugs out in the open. Behind the headboard is another place to look for evidence of a bedbug infestation.

Try to Prevent Bringing Bed Bugs Home

The most likely place to be exposed to a bedbug infestation is in a hotel or motel, so you should take precautions when visiting these institutions. Do a thorough inspection of the bed and areas around the bed before you settle into any hotel room. Take off all of the bed linens and do an inspection similar to the one you do at home. It will be trickier to check around the headboard because hotel headboards are often attached to the wall and are very heavy and difficult to move. If you do find evidence of bedbugs, just call the front desk and asked to be moved to a different room. Calmly explain that you found evidence of bedbugs and you would like a new room that is preferably not next door or close to the one that you currently occupy. Just because you find bedbugs in one hotel room, that does not mean that the entire hotel in infested. However, you are more likely to find infestations in neighboring rooms.

If you do not find any evidence of bedbugs, there are still some precautions you should take. Never unpack your suitcase into the furniture of the hotel room. Keep everything zipped up in your suitcase and only remove items of clothing when you are ready to wear them. Never pile clothing in a corner or next to a wall. Instead, pack dirty clothing in a plastic bag that you can hang in your closet or pack in your suitcase. The zipped suitcase should be stored up high on a flat and hard surface such as a desk or coffee table. Do not store the suitcase next to the walls or on an extra bed. When you get home it is probably a good idea to wash all of the clothing you took with you on your trip so that the heat of the washer and dryer will kill any bugs that might have stowed away in your clothes. The suitcase should also be decontaminated. In order to clean your suitcase, you can wash it by hand with extremely hot and soapy water. Be careful not to burn yourself with the hot water. Heat is the best way to kill bedbugs so if you can somehow get the temperature of the suitcase up to about 120 degrees, then you will successfully eradicate the bedbugs. Another option is to cover the suitcase with a plastics garbage bag and store it in a non ventilated area like the garage for a few weeks to make sure that any bedbugs have been suffocated.

What to Do If You Find Bed Bugs

If one of your inspections of your home turns up evidence of bedbugs or if you have bite evidence that there are bedbugs feasting on you at night, then you should call a pest control service like Terminix for help. Professional pest control companies have the chemicals and the knowledge for getting rid of bed bugs. Chances are that the process will start with an inspection. If the pest control technician finds evidence of bedbugs they will proceed with a treatment plan. Different pest control companies use different methods, but the three most common plans for dealing with a bedbug infestation are chemical treatments, heat treatments, and freeze treatments. Chemical treatments are probably the least effective, but they are less expensive. The alternatives are more environmentally friendly and more effective. Freeze treatments will use dry ice to freeze the bedbugs along with the eggs and babies so that they die and the infestation ends. Heat treatments involve raising the temperature of your home to over 120 degrees in order to kill all the bugs and eggs for the same result.