What are Bed Bugs?
What happens if you find bed bugs in your home? What should be your first step? Nothing can be more annoying than finding out you have those pesky bugs in your home. Bed bugs are small flat, wingless bugs that range in color from white to brown. Once they have fed, they generally turn a dark red. These bugs get their name from the likelihood to hide in bedding and mattresses. They prefer to stay hidden during the day and feed at night, where they can go weeks without food.
Bed bugs used to be rare in the States, but recently have become common in North America and Europe. Hotels and motels are the most common place to find these bugs. Since they are so small in size, they may be hard to see. The unfortunate thing is that if your hotel is infected with bed bugs, they can be carried into your home through luggage, pillows, clothing and anything else they can hold on to.
How Do You Know If You Have Bed Bugs?
If you don’t happen to see the bugs, you may notice red bumps on your body from bites. Bed bugs tend to leave bites in a straight line on any part of your body. Once you notice these marks, look in the seams of mattresses, tiny blood markings on sheets, or small insect droppings. Bed bugs can also live in picture frames, books and closets, because of this you need to preform a full room inspection.
If you do have bites on your body, make sure to wash with soap and water or an ice pack if there is swelling. Calamine lotion or any anti-itch formula will help with the itching.
How Do You Get Rid Of Bed Bugs?
- Remove all materials out of your room. This includes mattresses and clothing. Any place a bug could be hiding.
- Wash and vacuum all furniture and bedding immediately.
- Smaller objects that can’t be washed, like frames, jewelry and decorations, need to be placed in a black garbage bag in a hot area or directly in sunlight for 2-3 days.
- If possible, throw mattresses and box springs away. If not, wrap in plastic tarps to trap the bugs.
- Anything being washed needs to be cleaned in very hot water.
These home remedies should work. Make sure you inspect all other rooms in your home and alert other tenants if you reside in an apartment building. If you believe the situation cannot be handled on your own, contact an exterminator or a qualified insect control company. You must kill all bugs so they do not multiply again.
Follow these simple steps to ensure your home is bed bug free for life!