All About Bed Bugs
The ultimate blood thirsty hitchhikers…. bed bugs! Bed bugs need to feed every 5-10 days, but can actually survive without feeding for several months. This dormant period is perfect for transitioning into new homes under the radar.
Here are several ways bed bugs get into your home:
- When you buy secondhand furniture such as beds, couches, and chairs, check for any signs of bed bug infestation before bringing them home.
- Use a protective cover on your mattress – It takes away the nooks and crannies for bed bugs to hide and it keeps your mattress in a better state as well.
- Reduce clutter in your home to reduce hiding places for bed bugs and any other type of pest.
- Vacuum regularly.
- Be vigilant when using shared laundry facilities – fold your freshly dried laundry at home.
- Fill the crevices (which is good for any type of pest control) sealing cracks and crevices around baseboards, light sockets, adding door sweeps, etc.
So how do you know if you have bed bugs? It’s more than finding bites – Bed Bug bites look like several other bites and irritations: chigger bites, mosquitoes bits, hives, eczema, etc. The best way to know for sure is to go to the source. Your bedroom. Signs of an infestation include
- Eggs and eggshells, which are about 1mm and pale yellow skins that nymphs shed as they grow larger.
- Rusty or red stains on bed sheets or mattresses from bed bugs being crushed.
- Dark spots about this size: • which are bed bug excrement
- Live bed bugs!
Bed bugs hide in more than just your bed… When you’re looking for them they could be in wall outlets, curtains, behind wall paper, pretty much every nook and cranny they can fit in.
So how do you protect yourself and your family for these hitchhikers??
- Regularly inspect areas where pets sleep
- Never bring second-hand furniture items, especially mattresses and box springs, into a home or college dorm without thoroughly examining them for signs of a bed bug infestation
- Always check your hotel room: in the seams of the mattress, behind the headboard, etc. and if you suspect an infestation then ask for another room!
- Wash all clothes – even those that have not been worn – in hot water and dry them using an extra-hot dryer setting after a trip
If you have an infestation in your house it’s going to be hard to get rid of…. Bed bugs are very tricky! It’s best to call a pest company that has a good reputation and experience in bed bugs. If you’re in the Springfield or Nixa area of Missouri, give Chilton’s a call!