Bed bugs are becoming an increasingly common household pest. They’re mostly active at night when they bite the exposed skin of sleeping humans.
Bed bug bites cause itchy bumps on the skin which last about a week. These bugs have been known to spread dangerous diseases like chagas, though this is very rare in the United States. If you have bed bugs in your home, you should take steps to get rid of them as quickly as possible. Here is a list of tips and tricks to help you clear out your home of these persistent pests.
What You Should Know About Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are small brownish insects that feast on human blood. They feed at night, and they only come out when you’re asleep. They feed by biting into your skin with their proboscis-like mouthparts, then excrete saliva that has anticoagulant properties to prevent the victim’s blood from clotting as they feed. They usually go for areas that are concealed by clothing, such as the legs and arms.
They are found all over the world, but their biggest populations are in North America and Europe. They can be found in clothing, luggage, used furniture, anywhere they can lay their eggs. How to identify a bed bug infestation: A 100% certain way of knowing if you have bed bugs is that you will see them crawling along the seams of your mattress or bedsheets. They are brown, flat, oval-shaped bugs that grow to be about the size of an apple seed when they’re fully grown (which can take up to a year).
Bed Bugs will climb onto any host and feed off their blood until the host is completely drained (usually in three to ten minutes). They can go up to a year without eating, as long as they have a reliable food source. They prefer warm hosts and will hide during the day in dark cracks and crevices near their host for safety. They’ll come out at night to feed.
Guide on how to properly deal with bed bugs
Use Chemical Treatments
People often think that chemicals are bad, but in the case of bed bugs, they are good. The chemicals block the receptors on the bed bug’s antennae and make them unable to smell you or your family. Chemical treatments like some other means can help with removing bed bugs from wood furniture, just apply as instructed. Bed bug infestations have increased dramatically over the last few years, so much so that we now live in a world where most rental properties have a bed bug infestation. Bed bug chemicals help treat the problem by killing the bugs with an insecticide. When using chemicals, follow the instructions closely and keep in mind that it may take multiple treatments before you are rid of all your bedbugs.
Traditional Insecticide Treatment
This method of bed bug treatment consists of purchasing traditional insecticides from your local hardware store or supermarket. These products come in many different forms, such as sprays, incendiary devices, smoke fumigation, powder form pesticide dusts, and even liquids that are to be injected into cracks and crevices. However, some people choose to use these very popular products, it can be argued that they are ineffective at dealing with bed bugs. Especially considering the fact that bed bug populations have been shown to develop a resistance towards certain insecticides as a result of prolonged exposure.
Use Non-Chemical Methods
An easy, non-chemical way to remove bed bugs from wood furniture is to place bed bug traps under the legs of your bed. Bed bugs are attracted to warmth, and they feed on blood, so if you have a large trap then more bedbugs will be caught in it. You can remove bed bugs from wood furniture by vacuuming up all the dead skin cells that fall off your body during sleep. Be sure to dispose of the vacuum bags after you are finished so that new bed bugs do not have somewhere else to lay their eggs.
Use Heat Treatment
Heat is the most efficient way to kill bed bugs. It’s also one of the least expensive, though it can take longer than some other treatments. Heat treatment involves heating the infested items in your home to a temperature lethal to bed bugs, perhaps 130°F (54°C) for three hours or more. Be aware that while the heat treatment is not harmful to humans or pets, the items being heated will be unpleasant to touch for an extended period of time.
I’ve read that dogs have an acute sense of smell and can even smell bed bugs. But don’t go get your family dog and think he can get to the bottom of this for you. You’re going to need the help of trained professionals.
Vacuum Your House
Vacuuming is another good way to help get rid of bed bugs, especially if you have an infestation that’s spread into many areas of your home. The powerful suction of a vacuum cleaner makes light work of removing bed bugs caught in the bristles, and if you’re quick about it, there’s no need to worry about damaging your machine. You can also help your vacuum’s cause by vacuuming up the bed bugs you see around your home.
Monitor The Affected Areas
Bed bugs are usually found in your bed, but they can also be found in other areas where you spend a significant amount of time. Inspect the walls and floors near your bed for any signs of bed bugs, such as black or red stains from their blood-filled feces. If you do see an infestation in your home, use sticky tape or packing tape to gather any bed bugs or eggs that are crawling along the walls or near furniture. Once collected, store the bed bugs in a jar and take them to an exterminator to properly dispose of them.
Retreat As Needed
Oftentimes, your first attempt at removing bed bugs from your home is going to fail. This may be due to a variety of reasons, including that you used the wrong approach for the size of the infestation in your home. In these cases, it may be time to retreat after treating all of the locations where they’re known to hide and breed. By retreating as needed, you’ll help to ensure that the bed bugs in your home are removed as quickly as possible.
Retreating as needed means dousing areas of your home with chemicals such as those found in pyrethroid-based pesticides again and again until the infestation is eliminated. You should retreat at least twice after removing or eliminating their hiding places.
In conclusion, bed bugs are an annoyance that many people have to face. It can feel very overwhelming when you first realize that you have bed bugs, and it is important to know where to go and what to do in order to help rid yourself – and your home – of the pesky parasites.