Discovering evidence of bed bugs in a home can be quite unsettling. Tiny specks of blood, eggs or the feces of these pests on bed sheets can send even the most reluctant homeowner into a frenzied cleaning rampage. Those who take particular pride in keeping a clean, well-looked after home, often feel a tinge of shame.
This is understandable. Many believe there is a strong correlation between living in unsanitary conditions, and becoming a victim of a bed bug infestation. This is not the case, and for people who do have bed bugs, there is no reason to feel guilty over the cleanliness of their homes.
Research finds in cases of the most common species of bed bugs, Cimex lectularius L, that dirt and grime are not primary contributors to infestation. While excessive clutter can give these pests plenty of room to hide, once bed bugs are introduced into a home, even a spotless one, they can thrive if there is a food source.
While homeowners may feel better by knowing lazy housekeeping is not to blame for their problem, this information leads to a new unanswered question: If cleaning can’t prevent bed bugs, what can?
There are a few preventive measures homeowners can take to help limit the chance of a bed bug infestation in the home:
- Check bedding for signs of bed bugs while changing sheets;
- Caulk any gaps in baseboards or walls;
- Keep beds away from walls;
- Disinfect any second-hand items brought into the home, and
- Vacuum often to remove any bed bugs or eggs in the carpeting.
Since bed bugs are usually brought into a home by a guest, family member or pet, it is important to know if there was a significant chance of being exposed to bed bugs outside of the home. While it is impossible and impractical to ask or physically check every person or animal that enters a home, it is good idea to take notice of any strange red marks, unexplained swelling or itchiness, especially on school-aged children. These may be signs of exposure to bed bugs.
It is essential to note that although bed bugs are an annoying nuisance, these pests do no permanent damage to humans. Unlike ticks, there is not a known or proven “bed bugs disease” that can cause people to become ill.
Even though no bed bugs disease is known to exist, you still want to get rid of these pests as fast as you can! There are many myths when it comes to killing bed bugs: from off-the-shelf sprays to DIY home remedies, it sometimes seems like everyone has a different opinion of the best method to kill bed bugs. But there is only one proven method to eradicate bed bugs and their eggs:
Heat treatment is the ideal solution to rid a home of bed bugs. Unlike chemicals, heat treatment is completely natural and environmentally safe. Heat treatment, such as used at All Bed Bugs Begone, raises temperatures up to 185 degrees for 6-8 hours to destroy these pests, and is almost always 100% effective.
Homeowners who fear they may have bed bugs in their home should speak with a bed bug eradication company to learn more about treating bed bugs using heat treatment.