Learn All About The Cimex Lectularius
What are Bedbugs?
They are small insects that feed on both animal blood and human blood. These insects have been around for centuries, and they are so well-adapted to feeding on human that most people may not be aware when they are being bitten. They generally feed when people are sitting calmly or sleeping, and they particularly enjoy feeding at night. Adults can survive for up to 2 or 3 months without feeding, which is one adaptation that has ensured survival.
During the middle of the 20th century, they were in decline in America. Perhaps this was because people were knowledgeable about their existence and frequently used pest control methods to control them. However, in the past few decades, people’s worries diminished because their rare presence in homes. In the past few years, the United States has seen a dramatic increase in the number of reports.
Today, many people are still ignorant about them. Some people believe they are immune to the problem as long as they keep a clean house. That is not true. People also generally believe they are a problem only for the lower-class. That is not true either. Any home or dwelling can become infested, regardless of how clean or tidy it is, and so that is why people should educate themselves.
What do they look like?
They are small, only about 1/4 of an inch in length. Their color is usually reddish-brown, though they are sometimes a much lighter straw color. They are sometimes referred to as Mahogany Flats, probably because they are flat and oval-shaped. They are similar in size to an apple seed or a lady bug. Baby bugs are significantly smaller than adults, and they measure smaller than 6 mm. They are six-legged creatures, and the upper part of their bodies contains gold-colored hair. They have visible antennae and cone-like eyes.
The males have a sharp flap on the back of their bodies, while the female of the species has a body that ends in a rounded or curved segment. The upper body of both the males and females is often described as being wrinkly like crinkled paper. They emit a musty, sweet odor from glands located on their thorax.
Have Bed Bug Problems?
The term given to an immature bedbug is “nymph.” Nymphs are small, and they shed their skins regularly before they reach adulthood. These immature bugs must eat a meal before they shed, and they shed about five times before they become mature insects.
They are not flying insects, though they are somewhat mobile. They tend to be found around places where people recline or sleep, and they generally don’t venture too far away from such areas.
What should I know about their habitat and feeding habits?
They generally live in small groups as opposed to nests or hives. The bugs lay eggs, and the eggs hatch into incredibly small nymphs, only about 1/16th of an inch long. The nymphs go through molten stages and grow into adult size in about 5 weeks.
They reproduce quickly. The females of the species lay between 1 to 12 eggs daily, and throughout their short lifetime, they can produce up to 500 eggs. Generally, the bugs lay eggs and grow the fastest in temperatures around 80°F.
The bugs mostly feed on the blood of humans, but they have been known to drink the blood of other animals, such as bats, guinea pigs, chicken, cats, dogs, certain birds and rodents. They can survive as much as a year without food, though spending such a long time without feeding is not typical. However, they are generally able to easily wait up to seven months without food. They can also survive for as long as a year and a half with no oxygen. Once fed, they turn dark red in color, and the bug will also appear bloated in the same way that fattened ticks become round after a feeding.
What should I know about their life cycle?
Throughout her lifetime, the female of the species will lay hundreds of eggs. The eggs are small, only about a mm in length, which means they are extremely difficult to detect with the naked eye. The eggs are sticky and white, and the female deposits the eggs into hidden locations, such as crevices and dark places. The eggs are laid in grouped clusters of anywhere from 1- to 50 in each group. They generally take between 6 and 17 days to hatch. Once hatched, a young bug, also called a nymph, is generally ready to feed immediately.
After shedding its skin about 5 times, the nymph is full-grown. Their lifespan is about 10 months, though many of them live longer than 1 year.
How They Affect People
How do people come in contact with them?
They crawl out to feed on human blood at night. They insert their long beaks into human skin and suck out the blood. A feeding may take a couple of minutes or as many as ten minutes. The bugs typically feed on ankles, face, hands, arms, neck, the lower half of the body, or place on the body where flesh is exposed. When the bug bites, it injects an anesthetic through its saliva. This anesthetic numbs the pain. Therefore, most often people do not know when they are being bitten. Once fed, the bug crawls back to its hiding place.
Days after being bitten, many people develop a welt or itchy bump on the skin later. Some people do not realize that this physical mark is from a bite. Instead, people commonly assume they have been bitten by a mosquito or a flea.
There are a few warning signs that a certain bite may be caused by them. Take note of any of the following:
- bloody stains on bedding
- dark-colored stains on sheets (insect excrement)
- a sweet or musty smell in a room (emitted by the insects’ scent glands)
- shed skins or fecal matter stains
How problematic is the issue?
In recent years, the United States has seen an increase. These bugs are a pest and they may cause itchy spots and discomfort. However, they are not believed to transmit infections or diseases.
What is responsible for the recent resurgence?
Some experts believe the higher incidence is caused by three important factors. One is that there has been an increase in travel, both foreign and domestic. Increased travel has allowed bugs to spread because the insects are often transported via luggage and clothing.
A lack of public awareness may have also contributed to the problem. Most people are ignorant about the ways they can be transported. Travelers do not know to check hotel rooms and luggage. People do not know how to check their homes for the existence of these critters either.
Up until the 1940s, they were fairly common in the United States. People were more conscience of their existence, and so, gradually, the presence began to decline due to pesticides used during the ‘40s and ‘50s. However, pesticides have recently been restricted in the past few decades due to concerns about threats to human health. This restriction in pesticide use has probably led to more cases.
A third reason for the rise in cases is due to evolution. These insects are now resistant to many pesticides. This resistance makes them more difficult to control.
Some people believe that they are only found in developing nations, but that is not true. They are found all around the world, in Africa, Europe, Asia, North America and South America. Another common misconception is that they are only found in cluttered and/or filthy houses and motels. That is not true either. They have been found at exclusive resorts and well-respected hotels. In fact, common places where they’re found are as follows:
- single-family homes
- multi-family homes
- apartment buildings and complexes
- hotels, motels
- dorm rooms
They are most commonly found in and around beds and other areas people sleep. As mentioned above, they may infest dorm rooms, apartment complexes, shelters, motels, and even public transportation systems such as buses and trains. Some people believe that the bugs are limited to beds, but that is not true. They can also live in couches, behind picture frames, in chair cushions, behind electric sockets and in baseboard crevices, basically anywhere around a home or dwelling.
The bugs generally hide during daylight hours and then come out at night to feed. However, they have been known to surface at any time of the day, especially if they are hungry. After feeding, they usually hide in places such as headboards, bed frames, mattresses and bed springs, underneath wallpaper and inside dressers.
They do not generally travel far from people’s sleeping and lounging areas, but they have been known to move more than 100 feet at night when venturing out to feed. They are also notorious for burrowing and squeezing themselves into the smallest spaces.
Though the bugs can survive in clean environments, spaces that are cluttered or messy generally create a habitat in which they can easily find shelter. In terms of temperature, the bugs and their eggs can live in extremely hot and cold temperatures if they have time to adjust to such conditions. However, they do prefer to live in moderate temperatures of around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
In the primary stages of infestation, they are generally found around a mattress because they come out at night and feed on human blood. However, as the infestation progresses, the bugs spread out and move into and under other surfaces. When searching, it is important to look inside and underneath every surface and crevice. They like dark, secluded places. When looking for the bugs, it is important to know that the bugs typically hide in the following locations:
- inside drawers
- in and under upholstered furniture, such as sofas, chairs and beds
- under baseboards,
- on pajamas or other sleeping clothes
- underneath wallpaper
- under loose carpet and under rugs
- along and inside all parts of a mattress
- inside box springs
- between curtain folds
- inside phones, clocks and stereos
- inside cracked plaster
- around the casings of doors and windows
- behind all wall decorations, including posters and paintings
Which cities and states in the United States are most heavily affected?
Infestations have been on the rise in the past several years. In fact, the United States has seen a 500% increase in the number of infestations in recent years. According to pest control companies, the problem is occurring across the nation. People are reporting issues on both coasts and in all of the states in between. The problem is not limited to a certain geographical area or region. However, New York City has seen a particularly large number of cases, perhaps due to the city’s large population.
How do I know if my home is at risk for infestation?
The bugs are being found in all types of housing and dwellings. They are found in multi-family structures, single-family homes and apartments. Some hotels, motels and hospitals have also reported a problem. Anyone who spots what they think could be a bedbug should contact a pest control company for consultation.
How to Handle Bites
What does a bite look like?
The bites don’t look any particular way. Some people may not have any visible bite marks. On the other end of that spectrum, other people may have large welts. Some people describe the bites as feeling and looking like a flea or mosquito bite.
What should I do if I’m bitten?
Most people are oblivious to being bitten, and this makes it difficult to detect their presence at all. Regardless of whether a person detects a bite, the bugs can drink as much as 6 times its weight. After a feeding, the bug will look visibly larger and swollen.
After a bite, people’s bodies respond to bug bites in different ways. Some may not have a reaction to the bite at all, whereas, others may exhibit a tiny bite mark on the skin. Still others will have large, itchy welts as a result of a bite. However, bite marks and welts often take a few days to show up on the skin. Many people mistake these bites for flea, tick or mosquito bites.
In rare cases, some people have experienced an allergic reaction to bites. Anyone who has an allergic reaction to them should certainly seek immediate medical help. If bitten, the bite should be washed carefully with soap and water. People who suffer from itching and irritation from bites should not scratch. Instead, they should use over-the-counter creams and antihistamines. These products can help minimize itching and irritation. Warm compresses held against the skin can also help ease irritation. If the wound shows any signs of infection, seek emergent healthcare treatment. Signs of infection may include tenderness or pain around the wound and discharge, especially if it is yellow, white or green in color.
If anything, one of the most common fears people have is whether or not their friends and neighbors will find out that they have a problem. Admitting that one’s home is infested with any type of bug is embarrassing, but admitting that the bug is a blood-sucking night-crawler is perhaps most embarrassing. Many people are ashamed to admit they have bugs because they are worried about being stigmatized as dirty or low-class.
Bugs may also cause people to have psychological worries. Some people feel itchy or ill at ease just from knowing that they have been spotted in a particular location. Pest control experts can help exterminate the physical problem, but people’s negative reactions may be more self-damaging than the actual bug. A person who has found bugs in their mattress may feel jittery, even after they’ve bought a new mattress and gone through extensive extermination procedures. Paranoia is also common among people who have had a problem. Even those who have never had bugs in their home are paranoid just from hearing horror stories.
Am I at risk of contracting an illness?
Though it is believed that they don’t transmit illnesses or diseases, people should not scratch bites because it can lead to a secondary infection or illness. Young children and those who have health issues are most at-risk for secondary infection because of their weakened immune system and their inability to stop scratching the bug bites.
Though most experts agree that they don’t transmit diseases, the bugs are known to carry and harbor about 30 different pathogens. Recently, some researchers in Vancouver, Canada, claimed that MRSA, also known as staphylococcus aureus, was found inside crushed bedbugs. Furthermore, the virus for Hepatitis B has also been found in bugs after they have feed on a host that carried the virus. It is believed that they virus can exist in the bugs for as long as 60 days after consuming the blood. However, further research must be conducted to determine if humans are at risk of contracting staph aureus and Hepatitis B from bug bites.
Though they are not considered a health hazard, they are a nuisance. They can cause people to lose sleep due to itching and discomfort. Also, the knowledge that they do or have inhabited a certain area can make a person uncomfortable. The person may fear the bugs, and this may cause them to behave in a paranoid way. The mere thought or mention can repulse people.
Pest Control Treatment
What makes them so difficult to exterminate?
One reason they’re hard to control is that they are so elusive. These small creatures can even fit into crevices and spaces as small as the edge of a credit card. They spread quickly throughout a living space. They may move rapidly from one hotel room to another. They may also spread throughout the rooms of a home or an apartment dwelling. In addition to spreading within rooms, they can also spread from one person to another via clothing, bags or luggage.
Another reason that they’re hard to exterminate is that they can survive for over a year without eating; this means that homeowners and even exterminators may sometimes think they have eliminated the problem, when in actuality the bugs have simply hidden themselves away.
A third reason that they’re so resilient is that they can survive extreme temperatures, anywhere from near freezing to well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
One obvious reason they’re are so resilient is that they reproduce in a simple, quick way. The male of the species simply stabs the female in the side to impregnate her. The female will often go off alone to avoid being stabbed to death. Once she has separated herself from the other bugs, she generally lays her eggs elsewhere, which hatch away from the previous location, thus allowing the bugs to spread out. However, the bugs generally do not spread too far from their host because they are unable to detect their food source if they are more than five feet away.
What can people do to control the problem?
Some people believe that sleeping with the lights on or spraying their body with insecticide can deter these critters; however, this is not true. Sleeping with lights on will not prevent them from coming out to feed. In fact, the bugs may even come out during daylight hours if they are hungry. Spraying the bed or your body with insecticides does not typically work because these sprays do not repel them.
There are several things people can do to help control the problem. For starters, everyone who purchases second-hand furniture should be sure to check for infestation, particularly in beds and sofas or other furniture items on which a person may sleep, recline or lounge. They may hide in upholstered furniture, between the cracks in wicker furniture, and in the cracks and crevices of just about any type of furniture.
When staying in a hotel, check in and around the bed for signs of them, like their skins and their eggs. Look in the mattress seams, around and behind the headboard, along the box spring and in all other dark places and crevices. Be sure to check behind any cracks in wallpaper as well. Do not unpack travel bags until you have completed a thorough inspection. Do not put suitcases or bags on the floor in your hotel room. Once you have returned home from your trip, be sure to check your bags thoroughly for any signs that you have transported bugs in your luggage. You should also wash and clean your belongings carefully and immediately.
It is also important to observe good housekeeping habits at home. Eliminating clutter can reduce the number of places to hide. Vacuuming floors and cleaning furniture can also be helpful. However, the public should also be aware that keeping a clean household does not guarantee that they won’t become an issue. These pests can live in the very cleanest and tidiest of houses and hotels. Bugs need only two things—a warm temperature in which to hide, and human or animal blood to feed on.
Other key things that may help eliminate problems are:
- Place glue boards under the bed’s legs. As an alternative these legs could also be placed in soapy water or talc-dusted metal caps.
- Dust the bed’s legs with talcum powder or oil them with petroleum jelly, or use double-side tape designed for carpeting
- Extermination from mattresses by exposing the mattress to extreme temperatures. In order to do this, use a vacuum, hair dryer or heat gun.
- Use caulk to seal any cracks or crevices around the house.
- Observe good housekeeping practices that will lower the risk of attracting birds and rodents to the house. Having bats or mice in a home may encourage infestation because the bugs also feed on the blood of such small animals.
- Homeowners should also seal any cracks located in their home. When returning from vacations and trips, it is also imperative to check all luggage and bags.
When a home is infested, it is important to treat the issue carefully and properly. Many pesticide treatments can be purchased over-the-counter, but some experts believe they’re resistant to all over-the-counter treatments. If one decides to purchase over-the-counter pesticides, it is important to always follow instructions on product labels. Pesticides designed for outside use should never be used inside a home or dwelling.
There are several key things a person should do once they suspect a problem:
- Strip bedding and pillows from beds and look for bugs, skins and/or excrement
- remove the cover of the box spring and search the wood frame and seams
- check for signs underneath the fabric of the bed’s wood frame
If any signs are found during the thorough inspection described above, then be sure to do the following:
- Clean curtains, clothing, pillows, drapes and all bed linens in hot water
- Dry the above items on the hottest dryer setting possible
- For items that cannot be washed, such as shoes, put them in the dryer and set it to the hottest setting possible
- Scrub the mattress with a stiff-bristled brush
- Vacuum the bedroom and mattress. Remember to remove the vacuum bag immediately after use, place it into a plastic bag, dispose of the plastic bag outside in a covered garbage bin.
- Because they can live as long as a year without feeding, be sure to wrap both your box spring and mattress in a tight, zipper covering. This covering will keep bugs from escaping and feeding, which will eventually kill them.
- Minimize household clutter
- Glue wallpaper so that it is flat against the wall; this eliminates a common hiding place for bugs.
- Close any crevices around the home and fix any cracks in plaster to eliminate additional hiding places.
- Dispose of any infected mattresses and/or box springs. Be sure to rid the home of pests so that the new mattress and bedding will not be infested.
Some experts also believe that Neem oil can act as a repellent. Neem is a natural oil, and it can be purchased over-the-counter. The aforementioned measures should be taken whenever a person has a bedbug problem. However, taking these measures may not be enough to completely eliminate the problem. It is always best to seek professional help. Consult a pest control center. A professional will be able to assess the dwelling and determine if there is a problem. If there is a problem, the pest control professional can suggest the best method of extermination.
Most extermination methods will include some type of chemical treatment. Pesticide treatment—particularly if done inside a home—can pose a health hazard to humans. So it is important to follow product labels. Do not use chemicals or other products on mattresses, clothing or bed linens unless the product advises that it is safe to do so. Many insecticides can be effective, but they must be placed directly onto the body of the bugs. Because working with chemicals can be dangerous, it is always best to have these treatments handled by a professional with the proper training and certification.
In fact, recent health reports have illustrated the danger of bug control chemicals to human health. The Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, which tracks injuries in eight different U.S. states, revealed that more than 400 people were injured and/or became ill after using bug bombs in their homes in 2008. These “bombs” are foggers set off inside a home to exterminate bugs. While most of these injuries were of low severity, a few were serious in severity. These cases illustrate the fact that pest control, especially with the use of chemicals, can be harmful. All product labels should be followed carefully. If you are uncertain about how to use a particular product or you have any questions, you should contact the National Pesticide Info Center at 1(800) 858-7378. You may speak to someone at this number between the hours of 6:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. seven days per week.
As indicated above, before beginning an over-the-counter treatment or any treatment plan, it is best to consult with a professional pest control center. A professional can verify if they are causing the problem at hand, they can also determine the best elimination strategy. This strategy could be simple and short or it could be lengthier and more extensive depending on the severity of the problem. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) can provide additional information concerning treatment.
What is the U.S. government doing to alleviate the problem?
Recently, newspapers and other media have reported problems in many American cities. New York City is probably the city with the most-televised reports; however, they are a problem nationwide, and any household can be infested.
Due to their resurgence, the U.S. government has taken several measures to help alleviate the problem. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is the government agency that is perhaps most involved with educating people about the bugs and helping to control them. According to a 2010 Newsweek article, the EPA hosted a conference in 2009 for the specific purpose of discussing possible solutions to the issue. During the conference, which was aptly called the “Bed Bug Summit,” EPA officials addressed the following issues:
- research plans and methods
- the role of government in addressing the problem
- consumer education
- responsibilities of property managers in pest control treatment
- proper training for pest control professionals
Attendees of the conference included public health officers, expert pest control specialists and U.S. government agents. These experts and agents set several goals and agendas during the meeting. Since 2009, many of the recommendations made at the conference have been put into effect. According to the EPA, extensive research is being conducted by the Department of Ag. The government has even created something called the Bed Bug Interagency Task Force, which consists of several government agencies working together to understand and alleviate the problem. Representative from several government agencies belong to the task force, including:
- Dept. of Health and Human Services
- Dept. of Housing and Urban Development
The EPA has also made information from the bedbug summit available to the general public. To read more about topics and solutions discussed at the summit, visit the EPA website at www.epa.gov.
In addition to creating a task force, the government has also allocated additional resources, funding and manpower to help solve the problem. The EPA is working with both local and state agencies to understand the problem and talk about potential solutions.
Myths and Additional Questions
I can’t see them without a microscope, can I?
Some people think they are too tiny to spot with their naked eyes. This is not true. Though the eggs and nymphs are tiny and hard to spot, adults are more than big enough to see with the naked eye.
They are harmless. I should not worry about them, should I?
Most experts agree that they do not spread illnesses, but they can cause mental and emotional trouble. It may be hard to sleep knowing that little critters may crawl out to feed on your blood. It would also be embarrassing to have company staying at your house if you have an infestation. You do not want to be bitten, and you certainly do not want houseguests to complain of them or have any type of allergic reaction to the bugs.
I don’t sleep in a wooden bed. My bed is metal, so I don’t have to worry about them, do I?
Experts agree that wooden beds are more comfortable for bugs than metal ones. However, the bugs are capable of climbing up metal railings and headboards. They can also climb over glass as well. Even worse, having a metal bed may make it more difficult to notice an infestation because metal beds give the bugs less places around the bed to hide. Therefore, the bugs burrow into hiding spaces that are less obvious.
I do not have to call pest control to eliminate bugs. I can do it myself, right?
There are many things you can do to eliminate the bugs, such as all of the aforementioned tips. However, pest control companies can give expert advice based on personal experience. Also, some severe infestations may require chemical treatments. While some homeowners try to alleviate their problem with kerosene, alcohol and other fluids and chemicals, they should realize that these substances are fire hazards and can be extremely dangerous, especially when used inside a home. It is important to only use chemicals you are knowledgeable about, and be sure to ventilate the home.
I threw my bed and mattress away. I’m rid of those bugs now, right?
Wrong. As mentioned above, they most commonly live in beds and mattresses, but you should check all around your bedroom. They sometimes live several feet away from their host, so check bedside tables, all furniture, rugs, carpet and everything else in the bedroom as well. When and if you do dispose of a mattress, bed or other furniture, be sure to wrap it in plastic to prevent bugs from escaping and infesting other areas. You do not want to spread the bugs to other rooms. You do not want to spread them to your neighbors either. Another good idea is to destroy discarded items so that people will not mistake them as re-usable.
I do not travel much, so I don’t have to worry. Am I right?
Traveling and transporting the bugs home with you is definitely one of the most common ways to infest your home. However, it is important to realize that they can also be transmitted in various other ways. Guests in your home may bring the bugs in via their clothes or tote bags. You can also pick them up when riding public transportation, such as buses or trains. Actually, you can pick them up just about anywhere. Recently in New York City, a Nike store had to shut down one of its locations due to an infestation.
Sometimes the insects travel without a human carrier. If you live in an apartment, the bugs may crawl into your living space through walls that you share with neighbors. The insects can also move through vents and other small spaces. If there are reports of bugs in a multi-family housing space or apartment complex, it is important to let management and neighbors know about the problem. Everyone should get together, discuss where the bugs were last seen, talk about ways to prevent them from spreading, and inform everyone of what to do to look for signs of the bugs. Keeping quiet about the issue is one of the worst things you can do. Silence may make the problem worse.
It is too cold/hot where I live to worry about bugs. I can live worry-free, can’t I?
No, they have adapted to both hot and cold temperatures. In fact, they have been known to infest places as cold as Canada and Russia. They have also been a problem in extremely warm places, such as Mexico and the Southern United States. People living in such climates should be just as careful about prevention as everyone else.
My partner has itchy bite marks, but I don’t. This means his bites are caused by mosquitoes or some other critter. It can’t be bedbugs, right?
It is important to remember that two people may react to bites in different ways. The person you sleep with may show signs of being bitten, while you may never show any symptoms at all, or vice versa.
If I need more information, who should I contact?
Per the EPA website, the government has set up 10 regional offices as points of contact. The regions are divided as follows depending on the state in which you live:
For Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont, the contact person is Robert Koethe. He can be reached at (617) 918-1535 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Mailed correspondence can be sent to 5 Post Office Square, Boston, MA 02109.
Those living in New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands should contact Marcia Anderson in Region 2. Her contact phone number is (732) 906-6842, and her email address is email@example.com. The mailing address is 2890 Woodbridge Avenue, Edison, NJ 08837.
The U.S. states of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and the District of Columbia are classified under Region 3. The point-of-contact is John Butler, and the phone number to call is (215) 814-2127. Mr. Butler can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The mailing address is 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Region 4 consists of Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, Kentucky, Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee and Mississippi. The person to contact is Phillip Beard at email@example.com or (404) 562-9012. Mailed correspondence should be sent to Sam Nunn Atlanta Federal Center 61 Forsyth Street, SW Atlanta, GA 30303.
Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana, Wisconsin and Ohio all belong to Region 5. You may call Donald Baumgartner at (312) 886-7835 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The mailing address is 77 West Jackson Blvd, LC-8J Chicago, IL 60604.
Region 6 consists of Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, and New Mexico. Greg Weiler is the contact person, and he can be reached via email at weiler. email@example.com or by phone at (214) 665-7564. The office mailing address is 1445 Ross Avenue, Suite 1200 6PD, Dallas, Texas 75202.
Inquiries coming from the states of Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri and Kansas should be directed to Mark Lesher in Region 7. The phone number to call is (913) 551-7054, and the email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Mailed inquiries should be sent to 901 North Fifth Street, Kansas City, KS 66101.
Region 8 encompasses the states of Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Montana, South Dakota and North Dakota. Margaret Collins can be reached at (303) 312-6023 or email@example.com. Written correspondence should be mailed to 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, CO 80202.
Residents of Arizona, Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, Nevada, and California belong to Region 9. The contact person is Norman Calero. The contact phone number is (415) 972-3793, and the email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. You may mail questions and other correspondence to 75 Hawthorne Street in San Francisco, CA 94105.
Region 10 consists of Alaska, Oregon, Idaho and Washington. Juliann Barta is the EPA representative. Ms. Barta can be reached at (206) 553-1495 or barta. email@example.com. The office mailing address is 1200 6th Avenue (OCE-084), Seattle, WA 98101.
For further information, visit the EPA website at www.epa.gov/bedbugs.
I am concerned about having bedbugs after having someone ride in my car that discovered he had them in his house. Additionally, I have hugged this person and his family and I am very concerned that my husband and I may have transported them into our house. We have steamed the car and washed all our clothes , dried them twice and it looks like there is nothing more that we can do. Is there anymore precautions we an take. I am affraid to hug my friends in church or other places because of the bedbug problem being so expensive to stop.
I have found out for myself. That the apt. next to me had or still has bed bugs. When they treated the apt next door. They did not treat my apt. After they brought a dog in. I was informed that there were no bugs in my apt. Well they came through the wall. Now I have to contact legal aid. To find out what to do. So as far as transfer them from one person to another could be possible. So just check your self and everything you take with you. They have several types or oils that bed bugs just do not like. that should help you from transferring them else where.
Bye, Bye bug spray they will disappear!
No Bye, Bye Bug Spry is a waste of money. Yes, it kills on contact but then they doubled imy bugs in amounts. I’ve read everything I can find to get rid of them. Ive used essential oils through a diffuser. It helped briefly, slowed them down with tea tree oil. Ive used asdoirtment of oils on my body, even neem oil to prevent them from biting me. Nope just the opposite. Im nearly reaching my peak with these things. I cant stand to be bit 20 or more times a night. Help , suggestions, please.
Oh, forgot to mention about the bites: you can apply toothpaste ( peppermint) paste or liquid soap to the areas. It will help to stop the itching and dry them up fast. I got this from another site and it works !! Frankincense also helps the scars. I buy the one in the roller ball, it is already pre diluted and works well.
Hi I just move to Oklahoma Tulsa someone gave me a bed it had bed bugs in it we all have bits on us what can I do I dont have alot of money to fix this problem
I hear Bed Defense is great. Kills and prevents.Low cost. All natural.
Bed Defense is just a gimmick don’t waste your time with it!
After a week I successfully don’t see any bugs at all I used raid max flea and bedbug killer sprayed every seam of my couch and inside the couch for the first two days. I vacuumed every seam and down inside twice a day. Also the floor under and baseboard around. For two days. On third day I steam cleaned every inch of the couch twice a day morning and evening when it got dark. With inspection today I can successfully say I seen nothing. Tomorrow is my fifth day and going to steam shampoo the whole carpet in living room I manage to keep them under control just by doing this method I was stressed and very frustrated but I didn’t give up. And I seen results. I also have to children and pets and work full time job if I can do it so can u keep your head up and keep at it they are beatable. I will be monitoring everyday and cleaning couch everyday for next week or so even though I don’t see them.
My Husband brought these nasty bugs home on one of his away from home business trips! I was getting bit constantly and I am allergic. I thought it was ants! Oh geez!
I am ocd so my house is clean. The problem was my house is wall to wall carpet and wood everything. Our bed is a captains waterbed- wood! We have 4 small fur babies and it was a living nightmare!
When I found out what they were of course I panicked! (OCD)
I wasn’t able to sleep so sleep deprivation set in rather quickly too.
First I used bug sprays. WASTE OF MONEY. They would come right back. I mean right back!
I vacuumed like a tweaker at all hours. I read about rubbing alcohol and sprayed it everywhere. No. And, It can cause fires! I then sprayed bleach spray where I could which, no. That only killed on contact. I then heat sprayed every damn thing with my Shark steamer. YAY! It worked for one bite free night! Mind you, I was washing everything with laundry soap, bleach when applicable, and a few drops of Dawn dish soap, especially pillows and comforters! And high heat dryer settings. Some stuff I left in the dryer drying for an hour.
No. There were still bites!
By this time our furbabies have had a bath a day and were growling at me if I just looked at them. Ugh!
I can laugh about it now.
If you want to get rid of these nasty ass bugs you have to take extreme measures!
Wash and bag everything that you possibly can. Buy some food grade Diotomacious Earth. I got mine in the livestock dept of Tractor Supply. Buy some Murphy’s wood soap and Dawn dish soap. Own and use a vacuum and a Steamer.
Vacuum everywhere, Steam everywhere, use Murphy’s oil soap/Dawn dish soap combo in a spray bottle…everywhere. Followed by a mist of bleach spray. I even put drops of Murphy’s oil soap and Dawn dish soap in our pups bath water. Yes, it works. The tub was full of nymphs and 2 adult bedbugs ewww! I wore gloves.
I then emptied the Dawn dish soap bottle. Rinsed it and the lid and allowed it to dry. I used a funnel and filled it with Diotomaceous earth put the lid on it and used it to make my house dirty! YES DIRTY! Every freaking where! In drawers, every crack, crevice, baseboard, the dogs, behind everything, walls, under couches, behind toilets (WEAR A FACE MASK.) closets, drawers, EVERYWHERE!
By this time I was so paranoid, I am allergic to the bites mind you and even though I am fully stocked with Benadryl and epi-sticks, I WANTED THEM DEAD!
My house looked like someone dumped a sandbox on it. HA! Night one, one tiny red nymph that quickly became a smear! I could not sleep so I went through the night eye spying everything with the flashlight app on my cell phone and a mirror to look under stuff. Fast forward 12 hours later, I found dead bugs and nymphs in places I had previously cleaned and had no sign of!
The little bastards are all dead!
O wow! Thanks for sharing. I’m definitely gonna try this.
OMG Patricia…some of the things you said were a relief and made me chuckle, because it was as if I was writing your words. I am the cant sleep, lay in bed with a flashlight, vacuuming tweaker. I found bed bugs in my 12-yr old sons room about 5 months ago and freaked out! I anonymously informed his school and told my neighbors (yes I live in a 26 unit condo) upstairs and on the other side of my bedroom wall. Both of them denied seeing anything in there own units. The building next door (which is on the other side of a fence outside of my frontroom, sons room and my room) they have had several issues in the past with BB. I know this because they have stuck there BB infested matresses outside on the curb for all the world to see. I am very anal retentive and keep a very clean house. I DONT DO BUGS OF ANYKIND!!! and knowing that there is a blood sucking bug crawling on my body at night…UGH!!!!!!!! AND like you, I am allergic, so my bites welt badly and have blistered. Its horrible and noticable to others, therefore embarrassing!. The sleepness nights and the tearss I have shed…
Anyway, I started with bug spray, no. then I ordered cedar cide (expensive) and noticed that the were no more bugs. Then they came back! I ordered the tri jet fogger and did the whole house and a week later again as instructed and have diotomaceous earth along the base boards etc. It have been a week 1/2 and I havent seen anything (and trust me, I, like you, know how to look) but then a couple days ago I woke up with a bite!!!!! I have a beautiful place and I used to love to be at home…now I dont even want to go home. The minute I walk in the door I have anxiety and start itching. If one of my hairs touches my face or neck…FORGET IT…Im itching the rest of the night until the benadryl kicks in that I know have a habbit of taking every night so I dont scratch my skin of from my nerve hives that come and go.
IM LOSING MY MIND!…SERIOUSLY!!
You are my hero. I really don’t feel so bad now for flipping out and cleaning, spraying, vacumming, steam cleaning, loss of sleep and such now. Yes I am OCD as well with children who are allergic to bites.
I get it they are freaking me out I wouldn’t even ride iny sisters car today, I am afraid if yhey got on me I could leave one in her vehicle. I have DE all over my coach. Put a twin size mattress encasement on my couch cushions. All ovet my bed I not ovet ran with them going to them before they out of control.
Wow, I know excatly how you feel, I, too, WANT ALL THOSE F*$@&%# DEAD! I just tried pesticides; sprayed everywhere, all over my covered matteress and everywhere around it. Same night they were there. I’ve slept two hours in the past 48. But I think I’ve heard of that Earth stuff, so Im going to try that, thanks.
How did you know they were all gone. ??
I’m the same way! Going on a month of waiting for 3 go overs and I saw a big fat one full of my blood. They’re coming again tomorrow and since they missed a day the have to come back. Threw furniture out twice, had to rent a room for my 3 cats and my parrot… not fun! Feel like I have ptsd over these damned bugs. So nasty!
Your animals can get hijacked by these Vicious. Bugs my dog and
Ferret the bugs bite the animals and will catch a ride to your bed on your animals
My kids wanted a ferret so we got one to check them out and the first night my daughter was playing with it on her bed and saw the bug climb of the ferre on to her bed I came to see what it was expecting a flea but no it was worse it was a bed bug with Blood in it so bath your pet maybe it will help
i have a question for you on how to get rid of cockroaches permanently?
use alcohol 91% and heat heat heat
Tea tree oil is available at Walmart and some pharmacies. 20 drops in 1 liter of water in a spray bottle. They can live through this spray. If you can’t afford $6.00, mentholated alcohol (the green stuff) works too. 2 oz. to 1 liter in a spray bottle.
They CAN’T live through those sprays, I meant to say.
Go to Walmart or a Lowe’s and get some diatomaceous earth I have had very good results with this it is non poisoning. Google it before using!
Alcohol, Diatomacous Earth
I think you should create a Facebook page where people can add replies. Especially hints and tricks on how to fight the bedbug problem. I work at a rehab Where extermination chemicals is a no-go so I’ve come up with some ideas on how to slow them down.
We’ve even tried the $8,000 heat treatment, but they came back. Now I read about this Neem oil your site mentions. Where can I get that?
Maybe with a Facebook page we All can come up with the ultimate revelation on how to stop these Critters.
Bounce drier sheets seem to deter them too…
Another thing that deters bedbugs is Lavender. My friend was infested and he wa\shed all of his daughter’s clothes and bathed her in lavender soaps and her bites did not get worse. He even started using it himself. He said he smelled like a woman, but at least he could sleep at night. This might be a helpful hint to deter these buggers until you can an exterminator. His neighbor also found out thatb he had them and sprayed the apartment hallway and door frame with them and they did noot travel to his apartment.
I am sleeping on my new couch right now. Can I put the dryer sheets under the cushions ?
Yes i agree with the facebook page. Good idea. that way we could get on and check it regularly and would have a placee to ask questions and post pics.
Very indepth information about bed bugs. Honestly, I did not know that much about them but feel educated after reading/watching this blog. Very nice.
Very helpful and compelling information. Thank you for posting it. I hope you will add information about how Bed Bug K9 Scent teams, like Carolina Bed Bug Dog, have become an important tool in tracking the location of the bugs in their hiding places. Many times the bugs are hiding in places that we simply cannot see them. Bed bug dogs, like Abby at Carolina Bed Bug Dog, can smell them under carpet, in crevices, in furniture, behind picture frames, and more. carolinabedbugdog.com would welcome your questions.
How can i make sure my cat does not carry them to my new house
Use a flea comb on the cat, or even better bathe the cat with dishsoap (no bleach!) before moving in.
I recommend Diatomaceous Earth and getting a hypoallergenic bed cover. I put the powder in the seams of my bed and around the perimeter of my room and closet. Check your bed every night for any residue from the bugs. They should die within a week or two as they will eventually encounter the powder.
It gets better. Just hang in there.
I layed de down 5 days ago and i found one baby in a trap today and am freaking. I probably need to give it more time?
What is that Diatomaceous Earth? where can you find it?
We have found it at manards or any home improvement or hardware store.
This is just so much process. In small apartments not possible to properly treat & store possessions during professional extermination. Bring back DDT or whatever used in the 50’s. Just for bed bugs. They are more than a curse!!!
Bed bugs were already reappearing long before DDT was banned. Like most chemicals, beg bugs eventually become immune to a particular pesticide. The bugs that are not affected by a chemical are the ones that then reproduce.
I would like to know more about Encoding Guide offers please
Walmart carries it now as well as lowes
any hardware store carries it. It is actually fine stalagmite dust. it dries out there bodies when they come into contact with it and the simply shrivel up and die
you have to get “food Grade”, other dio earth are toxic if they are not food grade.
Diatomaceous Earth can be found at any feed store. For a 50-lb bag, it ranges from $25-$40. Worth every penny. it is a desiccating agent and will kill anything with an exoskeleton.
it is all natural and the bugs won’t get immune to it. They can’t get immune to something that cuts them and dries them out.
This is a really good website, very informative. I have been providing pest control services for 17 years, including bed bug services for about 10 years in Massachusetts. There is a new product called The Bed Bug Gutter which is a perimeter pitfall trap (it’s a channel that you put around the bedrooms against the baseboards), and it stops the bed bugs from travelling from room to room and apartment to apartment. It also catches and kills the bed bugs. It is eco friendly and I use it in tough bed bug jobs and in offices and other places that you can’t use chemicals. It’s a monitor and a trap. I’m not using it as a preventive device. It might be able to be used that way…I just haven’t used it for that. And, it’s no silver bullet. It’s just another tool to catch and kill bedbugs. But, it has been very helpful in highly infested cases. I also use the Bed Bug Doughnuts for the bed legs of the bed. I use them as monitoring tools and traps. Just thought I’d throw my two cents in.
I recently sent one of my workers home, after he showed me his bedbug bites, and instructed him not to return to work without a doctor’s note. I’m now paranoid that his cubicle may be invested. What can I do to ensure that neither me or anyone else in the office become affected? I’m scared to even clean his desk because I don’t want to take the bugs home with me!
You sent your worker home. WTF is that all about. That seems childish.
I agree ^^^
Bed bugs are not contagious
omg bed bugs are just nasty but u cant do nothing when u have them
Look dont treat with heat if u do you problem will come back.Use a none toxek spray of tocsonamy disen fectin and thin dry your shets but not top blanket do bottem first and thin top thee more you wash them together to more they spreed so bottem thin top and thin u should see a change in things…Do you have kids that are waken up with bites if so u may wanna get docters to give them special meds that are good for them.
Do all people get bed bugs more thin 1 time or 2 because my frind keeps getn them over and over she trys everything helpppp us plz,,,…?????
I can’t really understand much other than you’re trying to get rid of bedbugs. Get a literacy coach (reading and spelling), too.
Do you see the spelling of her first name? English is probably her second language…
Let’s try to be nice.
heat heat heat you have to get your house up to 150 degrees and use alcohol
i had a lazy boy chair that i use to sit in alot and slept in it. I found i full of bed bugs .. i had a couple of break out bits thinking it was hives..but it was not..i did realize i had bed bugs until i moved into a new apartment..i found the chair and threw it away immediately when i seen these bugs.. i have vaccumed and i have not seen another bug.. but where i was bit before .. when i get nervous those few areas itch? doe that mean i am getting bite again or can these same area of the original bite was itch again.. without them being “NEW” bites? Could have the bugs just been located in my chair and no where else in the house.. I didnt sleep in my bed so there was no indication of bugs at all … only in that chair… could these be the truth .. bugs where just in that chair only? and no where else?
i have like the redness and the itchiness and i can’t get rid off it and it looks horrible
would somebody help me and im close to go in school and people are gonna look at me they will not like me aymore how do i take it out…. >_<
I was wondering if they scare? my bites have gotten so bad before that ive had to go to dr. and get antibiotics and 50 dollar cream. went away and got better for a few months. But i have some serious dark colored spots or scars on me. its embarrasing!!!
If you spray your bed and frame heavily, then put double sided carpet tape around the bed legs, will this prevent bedbugs from crawling up onto the bed? What about putting 2″ wide packing tape around the bed legs; will the slick surface prevent them from crawling up to the bed?
I am going threw right now. It has gotten that I am ashamed and can’t go to church afraid someone will see my bites. Thank GOD its getting cooler, I am getting some long white sleeved shirts to wear. I have been sleeping on my new couch that I bought last November (2011) and got infested when I moved into my new apartment. I talked to the manger and she said there was no bugs in this apartment. What can I do ? I didn’t bring nothing into this new place they had to been here.
Any idea how to recover from bed bugs after pest control. What vegetables/fruits are required from recovering bites.
Please consult a pest control company about extermination and control.
I am a pest management professional that deals with this issue with all my regular customers.
Most people do not inquire because they want to stay quite about it or they believe it is to expensive for a professional to counsel and or treat.
I will say that most companies will inspect at no cost and give several options cost wise.
Please let me know if there are any natural cures for this problem. Usually there are old folks home remidies for just about everything. Thank you.
I found bb in my couch. Got rid of couches sprayed harris bed bug killer in sll cracks snd crevices washed and dried all clothes and put de everywhere. That was 5 days ago. Today i found a baby in a trap. Any suggestions. I am a single mom and i cant afford a exteriminator. I havent found anything in my bed but after cleaning the drawers in my dresser snd my sons we found babies. This was before i applied the diametacious earth.
My Father and I get bitten a lot but my Mother does not. Is it possible to eat something, like Garlic to keep them from biting someone and maybe leaving for someplace else? We spray lavender on the beds and in the rooms. I spray lavender perfume on myself and use lavender body creams. I do Bikram Yoga which gets rid of the itching and reduces the size of the welts. My father and I do look for them constantly and try to catch them. I wouldn’t do anything extreme like throw out everything. It doesn’t mean that they will disappear.
Please get back with me i have been bitten in a home health house by bed bugs and need further info about what to do.
we have just took out are mattress and bought an air mattress will that help ,can they climb it or live on it.
BED BUGS or DUST MITES?
I didn’t know what was going on when my son began sleeping badly and waking in the morning with fresh itchy bites on his body, arms and legs. They reminded me of painful mosquito bites. After some research I concluded the problem must be bed bugs (I assumed we had picked these up on our luggage while travelling). We sprinkled non-toxic DE dust all over the carpets and got bug proof covers for the bed and pillows…. I read about how quickly an infestation can spread and was getting worried since we could feel little creatures crawling through our clothes and over our skin even during the day. The whole experience was extremely irritating and tiring. I felt our apartment was no longer our home. We were leaving for Europe that week and the last thing I wanted to do was carry the infestation with us into the houses of friends and family overseas.
We washed and tumble-dried all our clothes and threw out all excess pillows and cushions. Not knowing who the invader was for sure was incredibly frustrating. When my husband suggested the bites were from dust mites, rather than bed bugs, I brushed this off as preposterous… after all how could minute dust mites produce such big bites? But after conceding that I had never actually seen a bed bug anywhere… I did some research and discovered that dust mites can produce an allergic skin reaction (caused by their feces) that looks a lot like ‘bites’. Eureka! We went out a bought the top vacuum cleaner and I was shocked when I hovered up about 2 bucket loads of dust from the carpets and under the bed, which our previous vacuum cleaner had been unable to suck up. SIMPLE ANSWER TO PROBLEM: Using a powerful vacuum cleaner and getting rid of the old crap one! Also eliminating sources of dust (like old cushions) from the home. I hope this post helps anyone who is struggling with little invaders… you have all my sympathy… I know how terrible and tiring the experience can be… I hope this helps!
I have recently just learned, that we had bed bugs. I am inclined to hire Orkin Pest Control to rid them, however, the cost is high. I had to throw away my brand new $1,500.00 couch and love-seat. I have become a mental case from this and make inspections daily. I am racking my head, trying to figure out where and whom brought this into the home. In addition, just because you hire an exterminator and pay, does not mean you will not get them again, especially, if you do not know what the source was to begin with it and it could be my neighbors. If I exterminate and they don’t, we will get them again. I am inclined to ask, but know they would not be honest and this could lead to a very nasty dispute…..not sure what to do, we may just throw everything out and move!!!
Orkin has come out 3 different times to do their spray treatment…….dont waste your money hire shendell or teminex for their heat treatmemt I heard it works and worth the extra money!!!!! Hope this helps. We used our own forced air heaters that we bought at Sutherlands and first treatment we did 140 degrees for 3 hrs and waited a week and doing 130 degrees for 9 hrs. But even after the first treatment we havent seen any, just doing 2nd long treatmemt for peace of mind that thise critters are gone!!!!!
I suffer from anxiety, which most people classify as a “mental problem”. I also now have bed bugs in my apartment.
First, know that there is a stigma associated with people who have anxiety disorders/”mental” problems. Mine came from serving The United States of America and protecting the lives of fellow citizens like you.
It’s not fun to deal with these creatures in your own home. Imagine how you might feel if you had to deal with them under combat/military conditions. No controls over nature. You at least can have some control in your own home, and can get them wiped out in time, and that’s the good thing.
Also, be mindful of the context in which you use words. “Mental case”, in this society we live in has become a derogatory colloquialism, that carries a stigma as bad, if not worse, than AIDS had, before the activists took action and worked to create tolerance for AIDS patients.
I guess they have better activists than those of us who are labeled “mentally ill” even though many of us are well-educated and go to work every day, just like most “normal” people.
Not sure about the definition of “normal”, either. Help me out.
Ptsd is a normal thing that most get especially in combat. I appreciate you, thank you for your service. But having anxiety is definitely a normal reaction to combat and as some may say the battle with these devil bugs. They seem harmless. They can definitely give you anxiety. I know. I’m still suffering from lack of sleep etc. It’s only been a few days since I seen a bug or bite. Have no fear you will get rid of these monster bugs. Just vacuum everything. Throw away bag in sealed container. Vacuum mattress etc. Everything. I even went and vacuumed and wiped down everything dvd and toy of my toddlers and threw away a few as well. Sealed and place outside in concealed trash bin. Steam everything. Yes even furniture. Your can even steam whole mattress, box spring, bed frame. But get a zipper casing for both mattress and box spring (walmart has them). After vacuuming bed, steaming bed place in the zipper bags. Then it’s helpful to place the sticky deals under bed, which ever part touches the floor. So if some try to get you. Then they’ll get stuck. Cheaper alternative. Wash and dry everything in hot water and hottest dryer setting. Then you can place your sheets back on bed. I put white sheets so I can see if anything was there. But declutter is very important. We look like we were robbed. But I have fogged twice along with steam and vacuuming everything. Would help if I put the de powder down as well. I will. But it’s only been a few days. The freak out is normal. The anxiety is normal. If people want to say something bad about that f them. Be who you’re. You have done alot for this country. I have faith you’ll get past this as well. The struggles real. But I am confident they’re gone. Of just very hopeful. Either way. I’m still lack of sleep. Sorry ramblings.
I think you are a connoisseur in the matter, I have a question for you?
Thank you for serving our country!!
I recently stayed at the Sheraton Hotel in Dallas, TX and during my first night’s stay, I found a bed bug in my bed where I had been sleeping. I contacted the front desk, and they moved me to a new room. They assured me that an exterminator from Orkin came out and inspected both the old room as well as the new room they put me in, and that no other bugs or signs of an infestation was found in either room. I went on about my stay, but am worried that I still may have carried home a possible infestation. Upon arriving home I washed every article of clothing I had taken with me and I bagged all of my luggage in plastic bags and put them outside in the heat. My clothes could not be washed in hot water, and many of them could not be dried in the dryer, due to the fabric they are made of. I am worried that because of the fact that I could not use high temperature water or heat, that I may still be at risk of having an infestation. If you could please offer any advice, it would be greatly appreciated.
Ok, so im super freaked out right now, I’m liVing in the not so great apartment. I went to give my neighbor a hug and saw a bug that looks like a Bed bug. We have had relations and I’m super scared cause it was at my place. I don’t care if its toxic please help him so i don’t get this. (literally i left his place put everything i was wearing in a bag and put it in my freezer them hopped in the shower) i checked all over for bugs. Please if they are here and babies or something any help to not let them attact?
I have a really really bad infestation. I have tried the diametacious earth and the spray, washed and dried all clothes and bedding. But I still wake up about an hour after going to bed I wake up with at least 10 on me biting! I stay up all night killing steady stream of hundred at least! They are in my walls! Seriously thinking of burning my house!. I would move but I’m afraid they’ll just follow me. Somebody please help! I feel like I’m trapped in some kind of sci-fi movie. I don’t have any money, I’m a college student.
I won the battle (I think)..
I caught them very early on (I think)..
Went to sleep one night, woke up itching my shoulder like it was on fire. Thought I was having a reaction to a titanium bar that just replaced my collar bone. Went back to sleep after a while. Next night, same thing only down my arm, on fire itching..
So when I woke up on the second day I started to search my couch (recently separated from my girlfriend). I found a dead bed bug in a crevice under a cushion and instantly became paranoid. Tore my whole couch apart, got out the flashlight and started searching, and in horror I found them, about 10 of them in a crevice. So I started killing them, one by one until I couldn’t find anymore.
Third night, woke up again, lower back itching. Next morning went to walmart and bought bed bug spray. Picked an area of my living room (hardwood floors) and soaked the floor, baseboards, everything. Creating a safe zone that I new was free of bugs. Took each individual cushion that was too big for the dryer, and sprayed each seam and edge with the spray, and stacked them in the safe zone. Placed each cushion that would fit in the dryer for 60 minutes on high and then stacked them in a safe zone. Took the couch, stood it on end, and sprayed every crack, crevice, and dent I could find on the entire couch.
Waited a day for it to air out and then put it all back, went to sleep, no bites.
Next day, went to sleep woke up with more bites than the first two nights. It’s now turning into a war, and I am obsessed with killing them.
Tired of searching for sprays and stuff that works, I caught a bed bug and performed tests on it to kill it, to my surprise, it survived even direct contact with the spray I was using. I knew alcohol (rubbing) would kill them, but I didn’t want to soak my house with that. So I tried boiling water into a spray bottle (note: this is dangerous and make sure you wear gloves that are waterproof) and sprayed the bug, instantly dead.
So I began boiling two big pots of water, filled my spray bottle, and began spraying super heated water into every crack and crevice in my house, moving furniture, heater vents, everything, I even sprayed each individual crack in my hardwood floors.
Five days now, no bites.
Did u win?
I’m dong this! Can’t hurt, it’s just water, but I do live in a multi-level apartment. They could just run away and come back when it’s cooler. Speaking of which, it seems that the part of the country I live in (Midwest) gets this type of activity in the Fall and Winter months. We see news stories about it on television.
omg I feel so bad for you. Just to let you know, many exterminators will do free inspections. They also perform services on credit, so you can pay them over time.
It will not hurt to contact one and have them come to your place. At least they can give you some information and advice on where they are coming from.
Also, don’t bee too afraid to ask family for help. This is sort of an emergency. Good luck.
What actions should I take after checking into a hotel room and waking up the next morning covered it bites. The hotel brought in cadaver dogs to confirm presents of the he bed bugs, and their “experts” confirm that was the source of the bites. The hotel office has not even apologized, and only moved me to another room.
reading and hearing about all these bed bug stories and no real cure to kill those little blood sucking suckers, i feel bad for everyone going through this, there’s so many treatments and still people say that the bugs keep coming back , so sad
“There is a great website that will help here, gonna try this as soon as my equipment gets here and my other tasks are performed.” Thought I would share it with you all but you need to use a combination of steps to combat these suckers regular vaccuuming, steaming , then once dry, powder lightly in every place you can not visible to the bugs or they will go around it, and residual sprays that will last awhile and contact sprays as well. It’s time for war!!! Also encase your mattresses and boxsprings with durable encasements and use painters plastic between your mattress and box springs where it’s almost hanging to the floor but not touching and move your bed away from the wall and couches etc. , expensive encasements is best the other ones do no good. I have heard Bed Bath and & Beyond has some great ones. Not forget go to JulesNoise.com, you will be glad you did. Traps need to be set also so they will not have a chance for a blood meal again, away with these Vampires!!! Truly a nightmare for anyone, hope we all can get peace with all the hard work involved at tackling this horrible epidemic. 🙁
Currently have bed bugs. I’m having Terminex get rid of them professionally. Had 1st treatment a week ago. Then then next batch hatches. Ugh! My sister killed 62 small ones on the couch. Can’t wait for the next treatment. The residual treatment they use kills most hatchlings within 12 hours. Need at least 2 more treatments. They give a 90 day warranty which is way better than Orkin who gives only a 30 day. Plus they gave a free estimate and Orkin wanted $90 to tell me i had them. Please encase your mattresses and box springs with an govt approved covering made specifically for bed bugs. Also we found it very helpful to place a 3mil think plastic sheeting over mattress then place bedding on top of that because the bugs can’t climb up the plastic. Make sure your bed doesn’ touch the walls or any furniture and have the plastic sheeting hang over the box spring and not touch anything either. Good luck to all who are unfortunate enough to have this problem. Our regular exterminator was unable to handle it so we had to go the expensive way. Wish we had done that first. It would have stopped the infestation much quicker.
We had our house exterminated about a year and half ago. We bought protectors for the beds, one new bed and new living room furniture. We still have a lot of stuff bagged up because I was so afraid we would get them back. At that time, I believe I caught it early because my bed was the only one infested and it didn’t have much bed bug residue or a whole lot of bugs. Well, we must have the worst luck because they’re back, but so far I think they are only in the new couch that was never treated because we bought it after the extermination. We dont have the money for extermination, after all we paid 2,000, just for extermination, plus water, electric goes up with all the washing and drying, plus all the work, and other supplies,it’s basically packing to move, but you don’t. I will do all the work again, but can’t afford the extermination from a professional only to get them back in another year and a half.
My son brought home a bedbug from college this year. (He lives at home & travels daily to classes). I think we caught it early enough. It took about 2 wks of him getting bit every night before he even said anything to me. He first thought it was an allergic reaction to a change in the laundry detergent. About a week later while changing his sheets, he noticed tiny blood spots. The bottom edge of the boxspring cover, which is hidden by the bed rails, was loaded with bb feces.
I purchased LIGHTS OUTS BED BUG KILLER online. It’s non-toxic, 100% safe and leaves a residual that will kill the hatched eggs. I have had very good results with it. But you MUST follow the directions. With this product, more is NOT better. There is a scientific reason why you LIGHTLY spray it and try not to overlap. All of this is explained on their website. Just google “Lights Out Bed Bug Killer”.
Both Steve and Rodger have been so helpful in answering my questions and giving me suggestions. I’d like to pass along a suggestion that I was given: After vacuuming your upholstered furniture (ie couch) and spraying it lightly with LIGHTS OUT, take some fluffy bath towels and lightly spray both sides of it. Then lay that under the cushions. If you have furniture that is made of a smooth fabric (ie microfabric) and don’t have cushions (ie chair), then you may want to spray towels and just drape that over the piece. You may want to remove those towels during the day and just put them on at night. The reason behind this is that the bedbugs have long legs and their bodies don’t come in contact with smooth surfaces. In order for the residual to work, their bodies must brush up against the sprayed item. So what the towels do is act like your carpeting would—–providing a bridge between the smooth fabric of the furniture and the underbelly of the bedbug.
I would highly recommend that you purchase extra and spray at least ALL the carpeting in your house besides the room that is infected. That will help to keep them out of the other rooms. A gallon of LIGHTS OUT is about $70. I found it easier to apply by pouring it into a sprayer (the cheap kind that doesn’t have a filter. They’re about $10 at Lowe’s)
If you have a heavy infestation, you may need to reapply the spray after 30 days.
Also, what I did after the carpeting was sprayed and dry, was to lay down a strip of double-backed carpet tape in front of every bedroom and bathroom door. I also used the tape on the legs of our bed. I had bought those bed defenders for my son’s bed as his room was where the infestation was.
**For the benefit of others reading this the first thing you have to do is clean up the clutter, bag bedding, clothing, etc, wash and dry everything possible on high heat and vacuum everything, including behind picture frames!
Hope this helps! I’m very impressed with this product so far. Of course, it hasn’t been that long yet to know if the bugs are gone for good!. But it was a lot cheaper than getting in an exterminator. And I didn’t want to do chemicals as I’ve already had cancer once!
For those who think that hiring an exterminator will prevent them from having to do all the work involved in preparing the area to be sprayed, you’ll be in for a big shock. It’s the homeowner who has to prepare it—the exterminator’s job is the easiest part as all he does is spray!
They are small but nasty creatures… Very useful website and especially this article… I also found something interesting, I think all of us should know a thing or two about bed bugs…
Words of hope. You CAN beat this. I don’t know how I got bed bugs, but suspect they came in a package ordered online. I work nights, my first bites were in my recliner as I am up all night watching tv most nights off. I must be highly allergic, I. burned like I was on fire. I quickly realized I was only getting bites when in the recliner. I inspected and worst case confirmed. I had them. I researched and was sooo depressed at the stories I read. I called a pest company, the day before they arrived I wrapped the recliner in plastic, taped it closed, hauled it out abd destroyed it. Bought a steamer and steamed my couch, found no bugs. Steamed my mattresses, found 2-3 small ones on my side of the bed. Put bed bug mattress covers and raped the zippers. Washed all my linens in hot water. Put all pillows and quilts in dryer. Then made bed. Washed and dried all clothing in my room, bagged and sealed and did not bring back to bedroom. Pest guy came and sprayed, then dusted diatomaceous earth. He only found one live bug on my couch. I placed double side tape glue traps under all furniture legs. I washed bed linens every other day and put pillows and quilts through hot dry cycle ever other day for 2 weeks. I saw one big in glue traps, so I bought diagnose earth and sprayed all baseboards in my house, my headboard, couch and between mattresses after steaming furniture again. Pest guy came back and rechecked, no bugs found. He used tools to check cracks between basebords. Nothing found. I continued changing linens every other day, drying pillows and quilts every other day and now added vacuuming the diatomaceous earth and reapplying every week. It’s been 4 weeks, no bites and no bugs in glue traps. It’s been labor intensive but very effective. I plan to continue my routine another month. Oh, I also took down all curtains and dust ruffles, washed an sealed them. Will not replace for 3months if I remain bug free. It can be done, but you have to be diligent and not let up on your routine. Steam, pesticides and most important diatomaceous earth. Wash, wash wash. Good luck.
I have heard that in places such as a church, bedbugs will not survive because it is not inhabited all the time. Is this true?
Great info – Bed Bugs are amongst the hardest creatures to live with, they have such a bad name and rightly so. People just need to understand that they can be controlled and eventually beaten under most circumstances, you just need to be persistent and not give in!
Thanks for the post.
I know adult bugs can live a year without feeding. How long can newly hatched nymphs and other adolescent stages survive without feeding? And, once the host evacuates how long is it till the bugs go into a self preservation mode like dormancy? Also, in a non feeding mode, how long does it take for female bugs to stop laying eggs to preserve energy? One more question: if the home were kept at 45 degrees and being cold blooded bugs, how long can nymphs and adults survive at that temperature?
Just an amazing resource and website. Well done!
I live in a complex, where I had heard that a neighbor had bed bugs. I didn’t think anything of it. Well, I kept getting bites, I live in the south in Florida. I have had a run in with these little guys once before, I stayed at a motel about 10 years ago. Never did I think I would be victim. My Neighbor did not Take care of the problem, I discovered that in October of 2015 he had his entire apartment exterminated for bed bugs. In October I started seeing a few clear bugs late at night, I did not realize it was bed bugs!!! So, I called my landlord and told him of the issue. He stated it was in my contract that I was to exterminate! I told him that I was told a neighbor had these bed bugs, and that I was unable to afford to exterminate. After all, they spray for cockroaches on the regular, why not bed bugs? I purchased a brand new sofa and bed right before this, and the total was in the couple of thousand dollars. All of my pillows and down comforters, trashed, thrown into the city dump! Now I have been sleeping on army cots for about three months. My husband and I washed and bagged every single house hold item and took all the necessary precautions. Vacuumed and diatomaceous earthed everything, put bed bug covers on all the beds, treated the cots we are sleeping on, keeping blankets and new pillows from hitting the floor. We removed everything, that was a possible threat, Had a Exterminator come out, he sprayed for a whopping 800 dollars, twice! we purchased our own do it your self, Chemicals to try and keep an eye out for any stragglers. And not to mention hundreds of dollars spent out of pocket. We spray crevices with alcohol, The animals have been flee treated and so forth. Two months later we are seeing babies again! Really, it is a daily battle. The bug exterminators did not find any of these bugs while they were checking in my apartment. They stated that the Apartment below me was treated in October and it was one of the worst infestations they had ever seen. I am going mad! The bugs came from down stairs! Since the extermination, I still live out of bags, I sleep on a cot, I am at my wits ends!!! These critters are back! They are still here, I am tired, exhausted and have not had a good nights rest in so long, I think I am going cray, cray!
I met bed bugs when I lived in hotel. My holiday was broken. These beast terrorized my family for 2 weeks. I decided to solve this problem by myself. I used spray. It isn’t works immediately, but it save our last week in Mexico.
Response: delinked the reference to the affiliate page on stoppestinfo.com/ 3-top-5-bed-bug-sprays.html We don’t spam your site, so please don’t spam ours.
There are many things you can do to eliminate the bugs, such as the aforementioned tips. However, pest control companies can give expert advice based on personal experience. Also, some severe infestations may requirl treatments. While some homeowners try to alleviate their problem with kerosene, alcohol and other fluids and chemicals. It is important to only use chemicals you are knowledgeable about, and be sure to ventilate the home.
Following a week I effectively don’t see any bugs at all I utilized assault max insect and kissing bug executioner splashed each crease of my love seat and inside the lounge chair for the initial two days. I vacuumed each crease and down inside twice every day. Additionally the floor under and baseboard around. For two days. On third day I steam cleaned every last bit of the sofa twice per day morning and night when it got dull. With investigation today I can effectively say I seen nothing. Tomorrow is my fifth day and going to steam cleanser the entire floor covering in front room I figure out how to hold them under control just by doing this technique I was focused and exceptionally baffled however I didn’t surrender. Furthermore, I gotten results. I additionally need to kids and pets and work all day work in the event that I can do it so can u keep your head up and keep at it they are conquerable. I will screen regular and cleaning love seat ordinary for one week from now or so despite the fact that I don’t see them.
I found my BED BUGS or DUST MITES in my couch.
Thanks for sharing.
I have heard that in spots, for example, a congregation, blood suckers won’t survive in light of the fact that it is not occupied constantly. Is it true that this is valid?
Right now have kissing bugs. I’m having Terminex dispose of them professionally. Had first treatment a week back. At that point then next bunch hatches. Ugh! My sister executed 62 little ones on the lounge chair. Can hardly wait for the following treatment. The remaining treatment they utilize kills most hatchlings inside 12 hours. Need no less than 2 more medicines. They give a 90 day guarantee which is path superior to anything Orkin who gives just a 30 day. Additionally they gave a free gauge and Orkin needed $90 to let me know i had them. If it’s not too much trouble encase your beddings and box springs with a govt endorsed covering made particularly for kissing bugs. Additionally we thought that it was extremely useful to put a 3mil think plastic sheeting over sleeping pad then place bedding on top of that on the grounds that the bugs can’t move up the plastic. Ensure your bed doesn’ touch the dividers or any furniture and have the plastic sheeting hang over the crate spring and not touch anything either. Good fortunes to all who are sufficiently sad to have this issue. Our general exterminator was not able handle it so we needed to go the costly way. Wish we had done that first. It would have ceased the infestation much snappier.
I know female bed bugs lay eggs on fabrics and upholstered areas such as mattresses and box springs, curtains, sofas and recliners. Do they also lay eggs on hard wood surfaces, glass and ceramic surfaces, plastic surfaces, awards (such as trophies, plaques, and framed certificates and degrees), and decor (such as figurines, bobble heads, sports memorabilia, etc.)?
I discovered my BED BUGS or DUST MITES in my lounge chair.
It is probably best idea to just throw away old mattress covers to have some peace of mind after a treatment.
Is Tracker shown in the video a rescue dog?
Questions I haven’t found answers to on any website. How far can nymphs travel to get their first blood meal? How long can nymphs live without their first blood meal (one site said months)? Are they known to be resistant to Phantom (pesticide) thus far? I will take answers at my disposable email (please no spam) firstname.lastname@example.org
I see no bugs. Not even tiny ones. Please help me! I feel them moving on my body under my clothes! I feel itchy! I am good at other houses. But just in our house I get itchy! My mother has a lot of red tiny itchy bite marks but she doesn’t feel them moving on her skin. They dont bite me but I feel them! I cant sleep! Help me! What are these creatures?
I really hate Bedbugs I really want a Killer to kill them!
I have them all over my hair !
they will run if you put the mattress on direct sunlight for four to five days..
We brought bugs back from a trip to Florida. We tried advertised sprays which didn’t work. A year ago we did the heat treatment, 140 degrees in our whole house which worked for about 3 months and they were back. A week ago we heat treated again at 140 degrees for 30 hours, just our bedroom which is the only place we had seen them, and they sprayed our whole house. A week later we found 4 bugs in our bed. Is there REALLY a way to get rid of them entirely?
My house is infested.They’ve even started eating the furniture