So what are bedbugs?
How did I bring them home with me and now what do I do?
Bed bugs are small, brownish, flattened insects that feed solely on the blood of animals. The common bed bug, Cimex lectularius, is the species most adapted to living with humans and probably originated from Bat bugs many years ago. They generally hide during the day and come out at night ready for a blood meal and that is YOU! They can go 18 months without feeding and people react differently to their bites.
Since bedbugs are so adapt at sneaking home with us we all need to be diligent in our travels. Here are a few tips to help you:
- Don’t ever place your luggage on a dresser or on the floor of a hotel/motel, personally I place my suitcase on the bathroom counter.
- As you pack, place items into zip lock baggies and when you return home take the suitcase apart in the garage or outside.
- Immediately wash all clothes and place the suitcase into a black plastic bag (you can place a Nuvan strip into the bag to kill the adults and eggs or I’ve seen people place the suitcase into a black plastic bag and leave in the sun for a few hours – you need 120 degrees to kill bedbugs
- If you discover bedbugs – don’t haul out the mattress, often times you will spread the infestation into other rooms. Call a professional ASAP – this is not a “Do IT Yourself” kind of job. You must kill adults and eggs 100%…
- The name bedbugs does not imply that they only live in beds, they can hide anywhere – headboards, baseboards, wallpaper, alarm clocks and electronics, pictures and art, curtains or drapes, window frames, carpet and tack strips, peeling paint, box springs, dressers, clothes, chairs and sofas, basically any crack or crevice anywhere.
- When aquiring used furniture or mattresses – check them thoroughly, my suggestion is not to use secondhand mattresses but this is your decision. If you must – check them twice or three times. You can call us and we can inspect and treat the mattress before you bring it into your home
I really think I can handle this on my own, what must I do?
I must emphasize that this really a job for a Professional Pest Management company – you need the proper equipment to tackle this problem. You must kill adults and eggs. If you don’t, it can make it more of an issue later for the Pest Management Technician. ProBest employs a Commercial steam machine, vacuum and the proper pesticides used according to Label and Material Safety Data Sheets instructions. We also sell box spring and mattress covers, “climb up” bedbug devices and other products designed to help you with this problem. Please call our office or speak to a technician about these products. Fogging and the use of bug bombs will not work and often drive these pests deeper into cracks and crevices.
Final bit of advice
Bedbugs are extremely tiny and require a trained technician to explore your home on their hand and knees, looking at baseboards to the ceiling – it is a process and takes time and patience. That is what is needed to locate the possible harborage areas and then to treat and eliminate these pests.
Use caution when traveling, allowing guests access into your home, and when purchasing new and used furniture. This year several clothing stores in NYC became infested and this is just the tip of that proverbial iceberg. Remember that rhyme “Nite, Nite, Sleep Tight, Don’t let the Bed Bugs Bite” takes on a new meaning as these little biters make their way across the country