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Bedbugs at home? This is how you get rid of them

by Danny White

We travel more and more often and bedbugs are specialists in accompanying them home, which has meant that they have increased sharply in USA in recent years. Bedbugs can neither jump nor fly (they have no wings). However, they are good at crawling, climbing and hitchhiking. They can be hidden in the folds of old furniture, in picture frames, among clothes in suitcases and other things that you drag home from second-hand shops, hotels or friends who have bed bugs at home. 

Unfortunately, if your neighbor has problems with bed bugs, it can also be your problem if they do not take action quickly. Bedbugs can be spread between flats because the racks are as small as apple cores (around four to five millimeters) and can crawl through small holes in walls and floors, according to Rentokil, which works with pest control. A female can lay five eggs a day. The eggs then hatch one to two weeks later.

Where do bed bugs hide in the room?

The name bed bug is somewhat misleading because the pests usually do not live in the wall. They can hide behind loose wallpaper, in broken putty, on the inside of electrical outlets and behind baseboards, but it is much more common to find them in bed. Bedbugs like our body heat, the carbon dioxide we breathe out and above all – our blood. Small cracks in the headboard, seams in the mattress, the book on the bedside table and the wardrobe are thus popular haunts during the day among bedbugs.

Do bed bugs leave traces? 

Yes they do. If you notice round blood stains on your bed sheets, dark spots that look like ink streaks or remnants of skin changes, there is a great risk that you have bed bugs at home.  

You can also find traces of yourself, if the bloodthirsty insects party loose during the night. Bed bugs are not dangerous, but at the same time as they suck blood, they inject saliva that can give red rashes reminiscent of mosquito bites. They irritate, itch and hurt a little.

What does a bed bug look like? 

An adult bedbug is as large as an apple core, four to five millimeters long, and has an oval body. It is almost transparent and thin as a credit card if it has not sucked blood for a very long time (it can go dormant for up to a year if it is short of food). A healthy bed bug is thicker and light yellow, brown or reddish brown.

How do I reduce the risk of bed bugs?

When buying used gadgets:

If you love shopping for used clothes, furniture and gadgets – check carefully for bed bugs before you take them in the door. If you discover bed bugs on the garments, you can wash them at 60 degrees, and both the bed bugs and their eggs will die. You can put smaller items in the freezer (in minus 18 degrees) for at least seven days or put them in a heating cabinet with 60 degrees heat for at least one hour. 

On the journey:

 If you travel abroad on holiday, it is good to place the suitcase on a table or bench, a good distance away from the bed if possible. Pest control experts usually recommend putting the bag in the bathtub if there is one.

 It is also good to keep the bag closed so that any bedbugs do not crawl in as easily and to leave the clothes in the bag – preferably in a closed bag – instead of hanging them in the closet.

 Of course, it is a good idea to check out the hostel, hotel or place you intend to stay at before checking in so you know if they have had problems with recurring bed bugs. But it does not have to be an odd destination or shabby hotel – bedbugs can be everywhere.
 Also look for bed bugs in the room and in bed before you go home. If you discover the pests, ask to change rooms or change accommodation.
 Wash clothes at 60 degrees and put suspicious objects in the freezer for at least 24 hours.

How do I get rid of bed bugs? 

Unfortunately, you cannot get rid of bed bugs on your own because a single egg can cause it. Bedbugs multiply rapidly so do not experiment! Call a professional pest control as soon as you suspect you have bed bugs so they can clean your home.