In 2012, news that one of New York City’s most luxurious hotels was infested with bed bugs stunned the world. For weeks, the Internet buzzed about the unlikely infestation. A critter long since thought to have been eradicated found its way back into the public consciousness, as well as its furniture. In truth, there is not much you can do to prevent an infestation in your home. Fortunately, your exterminator can help in the event you find that the pests have infiltrated your space.
Bed bugs can infest and thrive in even the cleanest home because they feast solely on blood. Even sealing off cracks in windows, doors, or the foundation will not keep them out of your house. Bed bugs usually enter your home by hitching a ride in your luggage or clothes. They may also be concealed in used mattresses or sofas. Once inside, the pests find a place to hide and reproduce. They can spread into any and every room over time. Typically, the critters live in cracks or crevices associated with the bed frame or mattress. However, they can also be found in curtains, the edges of your carpet, in the corners of furniture, cracks in wallpaper, or inside spaces of wicker furniture.
Rest assured that the pests are not considered dangerous. Although they are creepy and gross, they are not known to spread disease. They are typically active at night and bite areas of the skin that are not covered by clothes. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the intruders pierce the skin and draw blood through their elongated beaks. They feed until they become engorged and crawl away. The bites typically turn into red bumps that might itch. Most bites can be treated with a topical steroid cream or oral antihistamine.
Because of the variety of physical responses to the bites, people attribute their symptoms to that of other pests, like the mosquito or flea. Therefore, physical evidence is required to confirm a bed bug infestation. Look for live or dead bugs, molted skins, spots of fecal matter, or cream-colored eggs in dark crevices. Your exterminator is trained in recognizing the tell-tale signs of an infestation. He or she will conduct a thorough search of your home in areas where the pests typically hide
If your exterminator determines that your home is infested by bed bugs, he or she will offer some recommendations on how to eradicate them. Your exterminator will first try to isolate the source of the infestation. Then, you will need to remove your bedding and clothing from the area and wash it in hot water. Finally, your pest control expert will apply the appropriate spray, dust, or aerosol to the areas where the insects are observed or where they are known to hide.
Although you cannot prevent bed bugs from coming into your home, you can make their stay a short one. Talk to a pest control expert about quick and effective solutions.