Bed bugs have been around for years, infesting many areas all over the world. Infestations have decreased after the emergence of the pesticide DDT. However, infestation has increased in numbers since over a decade ago due to the bed bugs’ easily transported or easily nature. Bed bugs can easily spread and cause infestations when transported via clothing, furniture, luggage, beddings and others. There are a lot of possibilities where one can pick up bed bugs and cleanliness is not hindrance to these pests. Bed bug infestation has nothing to do with the cleanliness of the area for they are also found in the cleanest of homes and hotels, aside from public places like offices, stores, the gym and many other places. These little pests are small, oval and brownish flightless insects about the size of an apple seed, which survive on human and animal blood. Bed bugs can live more than 300 days under the normal temperatures they live in and with adequate food supply. Female bed bugs can actually lay one to five bed bug eggs each day, amounting to a total of about 200 to 500 eggs in their lifetime. In order to stop the infestation, not only the bed bugs have to be eliminated but also the bed bug eggs. A few steps must be done in order to stop the infestation.
Controlling Bed bugs and Bed Bug eggs
The initial step in controlling and treating bed bug infestation is to clean up all the areas where bed bugs are live and where bed bug eggs are laid. As soon as you see a bed bug or bed bug eggs, rubbing alcohol may be sprayed on it to instantly kill these pests. Call the pest control as this may already be a sign of infestation. You can start with controlling the infestation by cleaning all beddings, clothing, linens and rugs. These items must be washed with soap and hot water then dried in the hottest drier setting allowed for the fabric, for about 30 minutes. For items that can not be laundered, killing bed bugs and bed bug eggs is possible by placing those items in a plastic bag and heating under the sun.
Next step is to scrub the mattress and carpets to remove bed bugs and bed bug eggs prior to vacuuming. After scrubbing, vacuuming all these frequently including other areas where they live will help remove these pests. After vacuuming, the vacuum bags must be disposed of by placing it in a plastic bag then throwing it on the garbage outside the home. If the mattress is infested, it is probably best to get a new one. However there’s an option to save the mattress by enclosing it and boxy springs with a tightly woven cover to prevent bed bugs from entering or for missed bed bugs from escaping. This cover must be kept on for at least a year to ensure that all remaining bed bugs and bed bug eggs are dead.
Next step is to repair cracks in the house with plaster and to glue down loose or peeling wallpapers to prevent bed bugs from harboring in those areas.
While cleaning the infested areas, using pesticides are usually required in eliminating bed bugs and bed bug eggs. However, care should be taken in using pesticides due to the harmful and toxic chemicals. It is best to use pesticides which are safe for use on bedroom and other areas. Pesticides should indicate whether it is safe in treating mattresses and beddings from bed bug infestations.
Generally, the best option is to seek a professional pest control help. They are experienced in finding where bed bugs are hiding and where bed bug eggs are laid; they also have pest management tools at their disposal. Assisting the pest control professional is essential by allowing access to all areas of the home for inspection and treatment. Clutter may need to be discarded during pest extermination.
Preventing Bed Bug Infestation
Cleaning and inspecting the home regularly will help prevent the infestation from coming back. When travelling, it is best to examine the places you go to for signs of bed bugs or bed bug eggs and avoid those places and keep the luggage of the floor. Prior to coming back home, inspecting the own body and the luggage is essential and upon returning home, all clothes worn and clothes inside the luggage must be washed in hot water and dried under the hottest cycle allowed for the fabric.