If you’ve been paying attention to the news, you know that hotels and homeowners alike are wondering how to get rid of bed bugs. These pests can cause serious problems because once they’ve made your home their own, they quickly spread to others on clothing, luggage, furniture and more. Before you attempt your own bed bug treatment, learn more to understand if you can effectively eradicate them yourself.
What Are These Pests?
These pests, also known as cimicidae, are small and parasitic. They feed off warm blooded animals, including people. Contrary to their name, they aren’t limited to living in beds; they enjoy living in couches, pillows and even in small spaces like nightstand drawers, baseboards and between beds and headboards.
Cimicidae bites can cause red, itchy bumps and a number of allergic reactions. The severity depends on how many bites a person has and how their particular immune system reacts to the bite. There is no treatment, except for eradicating the pests.
What Causes An Infestation?
Although it’s commonly thought that dirty homes or unsanitary hotel rooms cause an infestation, that’s not always the case. Cimicidae can come into a home through a variety of ways, including on pets or wild animals, from furniture that’s already infested, through shared ductwork, from people visiting from an infested home or from a hotel.
To avoid an infestation, inspect all luggage and place clothing in a sealed plastic bag before leaving a hotel. Wash items immediately with hot water upon returning home and inspect them before returning items to your closet. If you see any sign of cimicidae, including eggs or feces, seal off the items in a plastic bag until you can determine if the infestation is contained. Don’t be fooled into thinking the parasite is dead if it’s not moving. These pests can go without eating for up to a year.
DIY Bed Bug Treatment?
If you think you have an infestation, you may be tempted to try a DIY bed bug treatment. Killing bed bugs with heat is one way, but is more complicated than it sounds. Eggs can take 60 minutes of constant heat to die, while the adults and nymphs take 15 minutes. This means if you’re killing bed bugs with heat, you need to know which stage of life the pest is in. Since the eggs can be difficult to see, you may eradicate all the adults, but leave yourself open to another infestation when the eggs hatch. Insecticides are thought to be ineffective and could introduce dangerous fumes to your home.
Will A Pest Control Company Know How To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs?
Instead of trying a DIY bed bug treatment, hire a company that’s experienced with these types of pests. A pest management professional will be able to tell you for sure if you have an infestation and provide you with a plan on how to fix your problem. They’ll be able to effectively eradicate these parasites, but know that it can sometimes take several treatments to completely rid your home of them.
Look for a company that offers a guaranteed elimination. Some companies may require you to remove or eliminate furniture, so check to see if the company you hire can complete the eradication without forcing you to spend the extra money on new furniture or linens.
Knowing you have these parasites and how to get rid of bed bugs is the first step towards a good night’s sleep and a pest-free home.