8 Wrong Ways to Eliminate Bed Bugs
It has inevitably happened: you have bed bugs. First, don't panic, because there are simple steps you can do to contain the infestation before contacting a pest control professional to exterminate the bed bugs. You will need to contact a professional. All the experts agree, to thoroughly and safely exterminate bed bugs from your home, you need to hire a professional bed bug exterminator. At Triangle Pest Control, we offer bed bug and pest control. Here are eight steps not to take when you have a bed bug infestation.
1. Don't change your sleeping habits
Bed bugs need a warm-blooded source of food. Changing bedrooms won't solve the problem; it will just make the bed bugs spread. The parasites will travel from room to room to find a food source. Remember: bed bugs can live for months between meals. Sleeping with the lights on also won't help solve the bed bug problem. Sure, they are known to feed at night, but keeping the light on while you sleep won't fool them into thinking it is day.
2. Don't toss your mattress
Bed bugs are commonly found in mattresses and box springs. This doesn't mean that by carelessly putting the items out to the curb you've solved your bed bug issue. Chances are the bed bugs have other hiding places in your home. By placing your bed bug infested items out to the curb, you are setting someone else up for an infestation. If you decide to toss your bedding, make sure to seal it in two plastic casings and tape a note to the front letting others know the mattress has bed bugs.
3. Don't crank the heat
Yes, bed bugs hate heat and it is true that when blasted with heat the bed bugs die. But, you will never get your thermostat high enough to kill all the bed bugs. Professional bed bug exterminators use thermal remediation (heat) treatment to bring the home to over 120 degrees Fahrenheit. The heat penetrates all hiding spots and naturally kills the bed bugs without damaging most household items.
4. Don't rely on the cold
Much like heat, extreme cold will also kill bed bugs. Yet, leaving a home unoccupied during the winter won't solve the bed bug infestation. Bed bugs can live for several months without a food source and have been known to adapt to survive.
5. Don't move infested furniture around the home
If you know an item is infested with bed bugs, don't just stick in the basement and hope the parasites die. If you need to move a piece of furniture in your home, make sure it is double bagged in plastic. The goal is to stop the spread of the bed bugs, not just move it from room to room.
6. Don't rely on chemicals
There are plenty of chemical bed bug products on the market. Many of these insecticides are applied directly to the problem area to kill the bed bugs. Yet, most often the chemicals have to be applied multiple times to permanently eliminate the infestation. Don't attempt to kill the bed bugs with garden pesticides. The use of these pesticides won't control the problem, and can pose a serious health risk to your family. Don’t apply any form of pesticide directly to your body!
7. Don't use homemade solutions
Many websites boast a natural and safe alternative to stopping a bed bug infestation. Some suggest using rubbing alcohol, kerosene or gasoline to suffocate the bed bugs. These products are flammable. Do you really want to coat areas where you sleep with a flammable liquid? Some websites suggest coating your bed frame with petroleum jelly or thyme oil. While this could stop the bed bugs from traveling up the bed, it won't kill them. Bed bugs will find another way to a food source. They have been known to climb up walls and drop from the ceiling.
8. Don't just wait
Bed bugs have two objectives: to eat and breed. If you suspect that your home has a bed bug problem, don't just wait and see if it goes away. You are setting yourself up for a larger infestation and putting guests at risk. Any person that visits your home can become a bed bug taxi. Stop the spread of bed bugs but contacting a professional to properly eliminate the parasite from your home.
Experts agree the only way to properly and safely exterminate bed bugs is through a professional. Pest control professionals use the latest, safest, techniques to identify the source of the infestation and then eliminate the parasites.