Bed bugs may be tiny, but that’s of little comfort if you’re living with them. In the United States, one out of five households is ridden with bed bugs. Without any exception, this common problem is frustrating and can be extremely difficult to solve. Most bed bug infestations make their way into homes with infested furniture or on luggage after a stay in an infested hotel room.
Here’s some detailed information on where to find bed bugs, how to recognize an infestation, and how to get rid of them.
How to Recognize a Bed Bug Infestation
First, let’s make sure that what you’re dealing with are bed bugs.
Bed bugs are tiny and flat—and they like to hide, making them difficult to spot without proper training. If you keep waking up with itchy bites, but there are no bugs in sight, you can determine their presence by looking for some common clues.
One of the sure signs of a bed bug infestation is the presence of dark droppings on your sheets or mattress. You should also be able to see shed skin on your linen and tiny blood spots. Sometimes, bed bugs even leave a distinctive musty smell reminiscent of a locker room.
Look at your mattress and box spring, as well as nearby furniture. Photograph and take video of any bed bug evidence you find.
What To Do When You Spot Bed Bugs
After you spot the first sign of an infestation, you must act quickly. With bed bugs, there’s no waiting.
The reason these insects are so problematic is because female bed bugs can lay up to 500 eggs during their lifetime, meaning that you’ll have an out-of-control infestation in about two weeks.
It’s crucial to locate all possible hiding spots before you start exterminating. Otherwise, the bugs will just keep multiplying. For this, you’ll need a battery lamp. Check the mattress seams and box spring first. Then, look at the cracks between the bed frame and headboard. Bed bugs also hide between sofa cushions and furniture joints of couches and futons, so it’s important to thoroughly examine all of your furniture.
A common misconception is that bed bugs inhabit only dirty and decayed furniture. In reality, they may enter your household via the new furniture you’ve just bought. And if you can prove this is the case, you might be able to sue the furniture store.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs for Good
First and foremost, using a licensed and trained bed bug professional to treat your infestation is the recommended route to take. If you need to take immediate action while waiting for a professional to arrive, there are a couple of methods you can use to try to get rid of the bed bugs:
- Before you do anything, thoroughly vacuum the entire area. Be careful with how you dispose of what the vacuum picks up. You want to make sure the infestation isn’t spread to other areas.
- Using high temperatures is the least invasive way of stopping a bed bug infestation. You should wash and dry everything you can at 140 degrees or higher. Although this is a good solution for your sheets and linens, it doesn’t apply to the rest of the infested furniture and materials. Be careful when transferring linens to other areas. You do not want to spread the infestation.
- For the rest of your furniture and belongings, you can use a steamer. If you don’t own one and can’t borrow one, the suffocation method is the next best thing you can try. Wrap every piece of furniture in bed bug-proof covers and make sure they can’t escape. After a few days, carefully vacuum the furniture. Ultimately you may have to discard of furniture.
Heat is the simplest and only non-toxic way of dealing with bed bugs. Some professionals may determine you will need to use insecticides or desiccants. some are less toxic for humans and pets, they are also less deadly for pests—meaning they may not solve the problem. While bug bombs are considered one of the most effective ways at getting rid of bed bugs, they are also very toxic. You should only use a professional for these treatments.
In many cases, the safest and most effective solution for bed bug infestations is to call a professional. Being so experienced, exterminators can determine the level of infestation with high precision and choose the most suitable method for getting rid of bed bugs.
You May Be Entitled to Seek Compensation for Bed Bug Infestation!
Have you had an experience with bed bugs? If so, we may be able to help! Our bed bug attorneys represent clients throughout the United States, depending on the circumstances. Contact us today and explain your bed bug incident and we will let you know if you have a case we can assist with!