How to Prevent Bed Bugs

"Prevent Bed bugs by keeping them from coming into the home from luggage or from adjacent apartments. The key to prevention is to avoid clutter, fill cracks in the walls and minimize the number of places bed bugs can hide.  Even the cleanest home could get bugs that are brought in by pets or people. ."  

There are many ways to prevent bug beds from ruining your sleep. 

Here are some quick tips to prevent bed bug infestations in your home:

  • Be careful what you bring home. Used mattresses and furniture can already be infested.  Look for red or brown stains on mattresses, a key sign that bed bugs have visited the area.
  • When traveling, carefully inspect all items that were in hotel rooms. Lift the sheets and look at the seams of the mattresses for bugs that are either visible to the eye, or as mentioned above, red and brown streaks.  If you live in a warm environment, leave your items in a car that is parked in the hot sun for a day, that should kill any bugs. Putting items in a freezer will also work. Luggage is a favorite hiding place for bugs. Vacuum the luggage lining.
  • Be sure to keep all luggage zippered closed.
  • Keep a flashlight with you at night so that if you suspect a bug, you can quickly spot it.
  • Inspect mattress seams to see if you see any bugs. You can spot them with a naked eye.
  • Store luggage on hotel racks or on top of furniture. Keep it off the floor. If you purchase items keep bags off the floor or in zippered luggage.
  • Minimize the number of places that the bed bugs can stay out of site. Fill in cracks in the wall and don't leave clutter in your room such as large numbers of magazines and newspapers. The bugs can live in between the pages.
  • Vacuum your room, particularly in cracks. A vacuum effectively picks up bugs.  Use the crevice tool without a brush attachment around cracks and window fames.  If you do pick them up, freeze the vacuum bag if you can and then dispose in a sealed plastic bag outside of the home.
  • Keep your bed away from walls. Particularly if you are in an apartment or college dormitory, the bugs will spread from one room to the next.
  • Clean your clothes and blankets in hot water if you were in a place that you suspect had bugs. 97 degree water or hotter will kill the bugs.

Ideas on how to Prevent Bed Bugs

It is important to keep in mind that these pests can be found all over the home, and not just in mattresses. They can live in sofas, upholstered chairs, inside dresser drawers, and just about any other place that affords them safety and food. Food, in this case, is human blood. Understanding that these pests can live virtually anywhere in your home is the first step when you want to prevent bed bugs from biting.

Another key to prevent bed bugs from bothering you and your family is to understand that these pests can be brought into the home in a variety of ways. These insects can be found in hotels, motels, and even on luxury cruise ships. If you happen to visit one of these places,bed bugs might get into your clothing or luggage and when you return home, they take up residence at your place. They can also hitch a ride on your pant legs or shoes. Once they enter a home and set up, they can be hard to remove.

Cracks and holes in your home can also allow them entrance into your space. The best way to prevent bed bugs from entering via holes and cracks is to seal those holes and cracks with caulking or some other approved substance. Contrary to what some may believe, these pests do not fly and they do not have wings.

You have to do some work when killing bedbugs. To prevent bed bugs from spreading you should scrub and vacuum all of the crevices and corners in your bed frames. You will also want to vacuum the mattress and box spring on all of the beds in the home. It is a good idea to also search any furniture that has cloth or crevices to make sure you remove pests that might be living there. Remove your bedding and wash it in hot water, and do not forget to look inside your dresser drawers.

When you are trying to prevent bed bugs from residing in your home, keep a few things in mind. First, a lot of other species of pests look similar to this pest. If you are not sure what kind of pest you have, consult with a professional before you try to rid your home of them. Second, this particular type of pest only feeds at night and will normally only come out at night (or in the presence of darkness). If you see a pest scampering around in daylight, chances are it is not a bed bug. Third, one of the best ways to prevent bed bugs is to hire a professional who has the tools and chemicals needed in order to keep these pests in check.

Safe Products to Help Prevent Bed Bugs

Naturasil sells a natural fossil dust that can be spread around floor boards and under the bed to help prevent any bed bugs from entering the home. When the dust comes in contact with the bedbug, their shell will dry out, killing the insect.   Dust is often used after a room has been treated for bed bugs, since the eggs are very hard to spot and kill with conventional treatment.  By sprinkling dust around areas where bugs can be found such as near the bed, when the young bed bug nyphs hatch, they will be attracted to the bed area to feed, come in contact with the dust, which will kill the bed bugs.

Only use a thin layer of the product.  Be sure to apply in a well ventilated room, until the dust settles.

Keep Bed Bugs from Entering Mattress

You can also keep the bugs out of your mattress by buying a zippered mattress cover. You can buy a cover designed specifically to keep bed bugs out of your mattress such as the AllerZip Waterproof Bed Bug Proof Zippered Bedding Encasement, You can also buy covers for your pillows from the same company.

Heat Treatment For Bed Bugs

According to Arthur Slater, a UC Berkeley entomologist believes that super heating a room is a superior method to insecticides. He recommends that the infected room be sealed, then it is heated to 120 degrees for 24 hours. This method kills the bed bugs and the bed bugs eggs. The problem with this approach is that it requires a skilled exterminator and it can be costly.

Hire a Bed Bug Exterminator

If your home does have bed bugs, or you aren't sure, the best approach is to call in a bed bug pest control professional, who has the knowledge and experience to do an inspection, assess the extent of the bed bug problem and then recommend a treatment plan.

Don't wait or the problem will get much worse and possibly more expensive to treat.  We have a list of pest control companies that are specifically qualified to treat bed bugs. 

Be sure to use a bed bug specialist, as they will know where to look and may have specialized equipment such as heating units.

Follow this link to find a qualified local bedbug exterminator near you.  Please keep in mind that if the bed bugs are not treated correctly, insects missed will begin to multiply and the problem will return.  Don't use a pest control company unless they have extensive experience treating bed bugs.

Half the battle with bed bugs is knowing where to look in a room.  Professionals will be able to quickly identify hiding places, not to mention that they have access to pesticides and treatment approaches such as portable heaters and bed bug sniffing dogs that are not available to consumers.

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