Bed bug infestations can spread rapidly through your home or in highly populated areas like a school dorm. These small, flat-looking, brownish bugs can mature quickly and produce hundreds of eggs in their lifespan making it difficult to treat an infestation.
Bed bugs live on the blood of pets and humans and aren’t too fussy about neatness or cleanliness. Even if you keep a clean dorm room or home, it doesn’t mean that you will never have to deal with a bed bug infestation.
Bed bugs can get into your home by hitching a ride on your luggage, your clothes, or your pets. Because they need to bite to gather their meal of blood, bed bugs like to hide in places where they have access to humans or pets. Your mattress, bed covers, and headboards are all great hiding places for bed bugs.
We are going to take a look at a few ways beyond calling in your local pest control that can help you to take care of a bed bug infestation in your home or dorm. Even in new home construction, bed bugs can make an appearance that could be detected by your inspector from Northwest Construction Control. Let’s take a look at a few natural ways to get rid of bed bugs in your home.
Signs You May Have Bed Bugs
Bed bug bites are painless but can create a mosquito or pimple-like welt on your skin that will likely be itchy. If you are finding small bites on you or your children in the morning after being in bed you may have a problem. You can also look for these other signs that you may have bed bugs:
- Small blood stains on your sheets or pillows
- Eggshells or shed body skins around your bed or furniture
- A strong and offensive musty odor in your bed
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Strip your bed of all linens including bed skirts or mattress covers. Collect all clothes in your laundry baskets or on floors and set them aside to wash. Pillowcases and pillows should also be set aside for washing. Every type of fabric including your draperies and bed skirts should be put in the wash. It’s recommended that where possible, your laundry should be done on the hottest settings to ensure that all bugs and eggs are killed.
Use a hard-bristled stiff brush to scrub your mattress paying close attention to all seams where eggs can be deposited. These eggs can be tough to get with a traditional vacuum method and need to be loosened with a rough brush and a good scrub. This action will break the eggs loose and make them easier to vacuum.
Thoroughly vacuum your mattress, box spring, headboard, and surrounding carpets. Make sure to vacuum under your bed as well. When finished, immediately dispose of your vacuum collection debris in a sealed plastic bag. You will need to use a high-powered vacuum. If your household vacuum is not enough, you can invest in or borrow a shop-style vacuum that will give you more sucking power. Bed bugs and their eggs can be stubborn and tough to remove if you don’t have enough suction.
Bed bugs and the eggs can be quickly killed by heat. If you are having trouble seeing where the problem areas are you can take your hair dryer to the hottest setting and blast all the crevasses that are tough to reach. Leave the heat on the affected areas for a few moments to ensure that all the bugs and eggs are dead.