Bed bugs are small and often very difficult to find. Once they make their way into your home, getting them under control is daunting. Luckily A1 Pest Control & Bed Bugs exterminator recommends a treatment plan based on how severe your bed bug problem is. Read on to learn about bedbug prevention, control, and treatment.
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How to Know If There Are Bedbugs In Your Home
If you’re unsure whether or not you have bedbugs in your home, here are some ways to identify them.
- Bite Marks. They leave marks on your skin if they bite you while you sleep. These bites look like red welts that can be anywhere on your body but most commonly appear on your arms or legs.
- Blood Stains. Bedbugs also leave blood stains when they feed off humans. These stains are usually found on mattresses and sheets but can also appear on clothing if someone gets bitten while wearing them!
- Small eggs. These eggs are cream-colored when first laid but quickly turn reddish brown over time due to molting.
- Look at their bodies. Adult bedbugs with flat bodies about 4-5mm long are reddish brown. They have six legs and antennae that are longer than their bodies.
- Check for reddish-black fecal droppings on your sheets and mattress. Bedbugs will leave behind droppings that resemble black pepper or coffee grounds. The color of these droppings can vary from red to brown, depending on the bedbug species.
Preventing, Treating, and controlling Bed Bug Infestations
Bed bugs feed on human blood. They are usually found in beds and other furniture, but they can also be found in cracks and crevices around the home. They tend to bite people while sleeping, making it difficult to detect an infestation until after it has been established. The following remedies ensure your home remains bed bug-free
Bed Bugs are hard to eliminate once they have infested your home. You will need to use some of the following methods to get rid of them from your home:
- Vacuum all of the rooms in your house thoroughly, including under furniture and carpets. Ensure you do this every day for at least two weeks.
- Wash all your bedding and clothing using hot water and soap.
- Keep your house clean: Maintain a clean home and get rid of clutter consistently. However, you should refrain from dumping unneeded items into the storage area. Having less stuff around the house makes it easier to vacuum.
- Check cracks and crevices where bed bugs could hide under drawers and other furniture where you might find cracks or crevices. Treat cracks and crevices with a residual insecticide spray to kill any bugs that have managed to hide in these areas. Use only products labeled as safe for use on mattresses by the manufacturer or EPA (Environmental Protection Agency).
- Cleaning Mattresses: Remove all sheets, pillows, and other items from the bed. You should use the hose connection to your vacuum to completely clean your mattress. There is a chance that the bed bugs will cling to the bristles of the brush if you use it on them. Pay close attention to vacuuming under the mattress seams since this is a common hiding place for bed bugs.
- Heat or steam: Bed bugs can be killed by exposing infested items to high temperatures for a few hours in the sun after sealing them inside a black plastic bag. Steam also treats carpets and furniture with a commercial steam cleaner. However, remember that the surface temperature of the treated object should be between 160 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit.
Insecticides can also prevent bed bug infestations. These products are typically sprayed onto mattresses or other surfaces where they can remain active long enough to kill any bed bugs that come into contact with them.
Insecticides should not be applied directly onto furniture or carpets since they will not have enough time to dry before being disturbed by people’s movements around the treated area. Instead, apply insecticides only onto surfaces where there will be no interference from human activity.
You can use plant-based insecticides like pyrethrins sourced from chrysanthemums. Synthetic chemical insecticides known as pyrethroids have the same effectiveness as pyrethrins. Both substances kill bedbugs instantly.
However, bed bug populations are immune to pyrethrins or pyrethroids. Using multiple active ingredients (such as multiple pyrethroids or pyrethrins) can be effective against bed bugs.
Bed bugs are mostly associated with infestations, partly because they have been so incredibly difficult to control. Taking proper precautions can avoid an infestation and treat one early if it does happen. Prevention is always better than treatment.