It’s notoriously difficult to rid your home of a bed bug infestation. Although these pests don’t spread disease, they can cause the discomfort of an itchy, sometimes painful rash. Many people who deal with a home bed bug invasion also experience stress and anxiety associated with the issue.
These seven tips from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency can help keep your abode free of bed bugs.
1. Identify the Insect
You may think you have bed bugs, but you could also be dealing with fleas or ticks. Knowing what type of infestation you have is essential for effective removal of the insects. Bed bugs are small, brown, and look flat, so google pictures of different bugs to see which one it is.
2. Don’t Panic!
You don’t need to throw out everything in your home before a bed bug infestation, so don’t stress yourself out with this expensive and unnecessary step. Treating and saving items is usually a better strategy.
3. Consider Your Treatment Options
Many homeowners benefit from an integrated pest management (IPM) approach rather than relying on harsh sprays and chemicals. It’s best to get a professional in to deal with bed bugs, because they are hard to get rid of. Most exterminators also have poison that’s safe for pets, and treatment will include things like bed bug covers for your mattress. You can try to treat it yourself, but you may not have the best results. It may take weeks of spraying and cleaning to fully get rid of a bed bug infestation, so beware!
4. Clean Up Clutter
Bed bugs affect more than just your mattress. Cluttered areas in and around the bed offer additional hiding places that can compound the problem. Bed bugs will live anywhere, including holes in the wall, curves in the molding, spaces between floorboards, and even inside books and magazines. Once you’ve removed unnecessary items from around the mattress, night table, and headboard, encase your mattress with a protective cover designed to smother bed bugs and keep them from returning.
5. Use the Washer and Dryer
Washing your clothes and linens in hot water and drying them on high heat will kill any bugs and eggs that are attached to the fabric. Don’t forget to clean your laundry hampers too.
6. Don’t Rely on Freezing
Freezing bed bugs is not a great method of do-it-yourself method of bed bug control. Home freezers are not cold enough to ensure that the bugs and eggs will die. Bed bugs are notoriously resilient and will go to “sleep” in a freezer. The same goes for DIY heat treatments. Leave these methods to the professionals.
7. Vacuum Carefully
If you have carpets, vacuum the entire floor and empty the vacuum bag in an outdoor trashcan between rooms. You should also vacuum any upholstered furniture, bed frames, and in and around cracks and crevices of wooden furniture. The more bugs you can destroy, the smaller your infestation will be and the less likely you are to suffer bites.
It may seem cheaper to conduct the bed bug extermination on your own, however your pest invasion may be more expensive in the long haul if results don’t render 100% successful. Leave it to the professionals to get the job done safely and effectively. Contact us today for a free phone estimate.