Bed Bugs Keeping You Up at Night?
If you’ve been waking up in the morning with little red marks on your body, then you might be the victim of a little nighttime smorgasbord. Bed bugs just love dining on human flesh, and although you don’t usually feel their bite while you’re asleep, the marks they leave behind can be sore, itchy and embarrassing. Knowing that you’re on the menu is also enough to leave you afraid to go to sleep, and this can create another set of serious problems. Here are some tips and information on bed bugs, how to tell if your home is infested and what to do about it if it is.
Signs of Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are very tiny insects that only come out at night. Adults are most noticeable because they can grow to about the size and shape of a small apple seed. These insects like to congregate in the nooks and crannies of mattresses. But, contrary to their popular name, bed bugs don’t restrict themselves to just your bedding. They can also inhabit sofas, loveseats, plush chairs, window frames, carpeting and other fabric-lined items and furniture. Tell-tale signs of infestation can include:
- Clusters of red welts on the body, mostly found on the torso. Individual welts are small and will usually have a dark red center.
- Tiny blood spots on your bedding. This is caused by the accidental squashing of well-fed bed bugs as you move throughout the night.
- Discarded brown exoskeleton shells. Bed bugs molt every two months and they have an average lifespan of 10 months.
- Brown stains in the nooks and crannies of your mattress or anywhere else the bugs may be inhabiting. The staining is a result of the bugs defecating.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Getting rid of bed bugs without the assistance of a professional exterminator can be difficult as these bugs are resilient and fast multiplying, but it is possible with severe determination. Here are a few strategies you can use to help avoid or control a bed bug infestation.
If Bed Bugs are Already in the Home:
- Wash all of your bedding materials in hot water (120 degrees or higher) and dry them on the highest setting possible.
- Use a steam cleaner to thoroughly clean any non-washable furniture and carpeting. Concentrate your steam cleaning efforts in the nooks and crevices.
- Vacuum often and dispose of the collected debris immediately.
- Wrap your mattress and box spring in specially made zipper bags and keep them wrapped for at least a full year so the contained bugs will die off.
- Chemical treatments, which are the most effective, are available, but they should only be used by a professional. In addition, using chemical treatments on mattresses or bedding could pose a health hazard to young children or people who suffer from breathing problems, so precautions need to be followed.
If Your Home is Currently Bed Bug Free:
- Check hotel furniture and your luggage vigilantly when traveling, especially before you leave, to ensure you don’t bring home any uninvited guests.
- If you’ve heard rumors about a certain place having bed bugs, avoid it at all costs as the bugs can enter your home on your clothing.
- If you’ve received or purchased used furniture, steam clean it thoroughly before bringing it into your home.
- Clean your home frequently and reduce the amount of clutter that the bugs could otherwise use to hide.
Whether you currently have bed bugs or you want to protect your home against them, follow the tips included above and you’ll improve your chances of sleeping bite-free. Lenny’s Pest Control is your trusted Bed Bug Extermination expert in the Southwest Florida area – call us and we’ll take care of your bed bugs right away!
Lenny’s Pest Control is all about educating you and helping you protect your home and space from unwanted, bugs and pests. We would love to come out to your home or business and inspect your property, give you an estimate and get your protected. Please give us a call at (239) 945-6543 for all your pest control needs in southwest Florida.
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