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April 28, 2021

Here’s what causes bed bugs — and how to get rid of them

Prevention Bed Bugs

Content sponsored by IBC - Native (195x33)

Bed and nightstand with lamp Burst/

Pest infestations are often associated with unsanitary conditions, but bed bugs can affect even the cleanest of households. Bed bugs are small, pinhead-sized bugs that feed on blood. While they don’t spread disease, they are considered a public health pest and can cause irritating, itchy bites.

Where do bed bugs come from?

If you have bed bugs at home, they probably hitched a ride into the house. It’s possible to pick them up at a hotel or bring them home from someone else’s house without realizing it. Bed bugs can travel from one place to another on clothing, bedding, luggage, and furniture. Office environments don’t generally have infestations, but they can serve as a transfer hub for bed bugs.

Do I have bed bugs?

Not everyone experiences a visible reaction to bed bug bites, so you may not even notice you have an infestation at first. It’s possible that one person in the house has no reaction, while another has visible marks from being bitten. If you suspect bed bugs are in your home, it’s important to root them out immediately. Diligently check all around your bed for signs. Bed bugs can be found in the seams of chairs, in curtains, in the bed headboard, and anywhere in the mattress. If you do have bed bugs, you should be able to see visible signs — if not the bugs themselves, look for staining or discarded bed bug shells.

How do I get rid of these pests?

Once bed bugs are in your home, they can be difficult to remove. Bed bugs can survive up to a year without feeding, and winning the battle against them requires eliminating an infestation completely. Begin by washing all of your bedding and clothing at high temperatures to kill any bugs or eggs. Buying sealed cases for your mattress, box spring, and pillows will trap any bugs, and help to prevent future infestations. Eliminate hiding places for bed bugs by reducing clutter around your home and vacuum your carpets frequently to catch any bugs that may have hitchhiked into your home.

You may need to also use pesticides to kill any bugs hiding elsewhere. Be sure to carefully read the instructions included with any pesticides you purchase before treating any areas of your home. If you are unsure about the safety of a product or the infestation persists after treatment, it may be best to contact a professional exterminator.

Bed bug infestations can spread quickly…and the more they spread, the more difficult they are to remove. If you suspect a bed bug infestation, identify the source within your home and take the appropriate actions to remove them as quickly as possible.

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