How To Get Rid of Mattress Bugs Quick, Safely, and Successfully

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Photo: istockphoto.com

Among all types of insect infestation, bed bugs are among the most feared homeowners. These tiny insects like to live on clothes or bedding and hide in small and flat spaces.

Bed bugs feed on their subjects’ blood and cause tiny, itchy red bumps, typically in straight lines. Here are ways to identify the problem and several solutions for homeowners who believe they may have a bed bug infestation.

Required time: A couple of days, work asap
Difficulty: Medium
Estimated costs: $ 600 to $ 1,500

For homeowners dealing with a bed bug infestation themselves, here are some of the best bed bug sprays to stop the infestation.

Tools & materials

BEFORE YOU START…

Here's how to get rid of bed bugs before you start

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The first time a homeowner spots bed bugs, they should determine which rooms are infected. Bed bugs usually live in rooms where people sleep or in rooms with sofas. Once they get used to it, they slowly spread to other rooms, so it is important to find and treat the problem as soon as it is discovered. Once bed bugs are discovered, homeowners should examine all of their clothing and find a safe place to sleep while getting rid of the bugs.

Bed bugs vs. ticks

Before homeowners begin, it is important to clarify what type of insect is making them itchy. Often times, ticks and bed bugs can be confused because they both cause itchy red bumps.
So what do bed bugs look like? Bed bugs have six legs and usually hide inside, while ticks have eight legs and prefer to live outdoors. Bed bugs also tend to cause more bites. Regardless of what creature infects a home, they need to be treated immediately.

Tips on how to get rid of bed bugs

  • As with any insect infestation, if a homeowner finds that there are too many bed bugs to fight themselves, they should call an exterminator to resolve the situation.
  • Homeowners should treat other areas in their home when getting rid of bed bugs, even if bed bugs have not been detected. Treating these areas will prevent future infestation.

Security aspects

  • Make sure you wear a mask, safety glasses, and have an adequately ventilated area when working with toxic chemicals.
  • Itchy bed bug bites can make them worse, so avoid doing this if possible.

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STEP 1: Make sure you identify the correct pest.

As mentioned above, people often mistake bed bugs for another type of insect infestation. In addition to ticks, bed bugs can also be mistakenly identified as fleas. Fleas are smaller than bed bugs, about 1/10 of an inch tall, and difficult to see with the naked eye. Fleas also cause bites that itch and turn red. If a homeowner finds that fleas or ticks have mistakenly caused a bed bug infestation, they should see a doctor right away, as fleas and ticks can transmit disease.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Determine the infested rooms

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STEP 2: Determine which rooms and objects are infested.

Once a homeowner determines that bed bugs are the problem, they need to evaluate the other rooms in their home and clothing. According to Orkin, homeowners should search their homes for tiny spots that the tiny, tiny bodies of bed bugs can squeeze into.

When looking for bed bugs, it is helpful to use a flashlight and magnifying glass to make sure all areas are covered. A homeowner can also hire a professional for an inspection.

STEP 3: Limit the area to prevent further infestation.

Now that every area of ​​the home has been searched and a homeowner is certain where the bed bugs are, they can now contain them. Bed bugs can be easily caught by a vacuum cleaner, so homeowners should first thoroughly search their bed, dresser, carpet, and all electronic equipment with a handheld vacuum cleaner. Once done, you should seal the contents in a plastic bag and vacuum clean.

STEP 4: Reduce the clutter in the house.

In determining which areas are infested with bed bugs, homeowners should try to reduce the clutter in their homes. Bed bugs are attracted to warm and dark rooms and often hide in cardboard. By throwing away unnecessary items like newspapers and magazines and picking clothes off the floor, bed bugs have fewer places to hide.

STEP 5: Remove all bedding, clothing, and other items from the infected area.

Bed bug-infested clothing and bedding should be placed in a plastic bag until washed. They should be washed on the highest possible temperature setting for both the washer and dryer. If something cannot be put through the washer or dryer, it should be placed in an airtight plastic bag and left alone for a few months to give the bed bugs time to die.

This is how you get rid of bed bugs and clean furniture

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STEP 6: Clean and lock furniture.

Contaminated furniture should be stripped of its covers and washed thoroughly in hot water. If the furniture cannot be completely dismantled and cleaned, it must be disposed of. However, homeowners don’t need to throw their bed in a bug infestation as long as they properly care for their linens.

STEP 7: Use chemical and non-chemical methods or products to kill bed bugs.

Homeowners should use safe and EPA approved chemical sprays when trying to rid their home of bed bugs. Bleach is also a readily available household chemical that can kill bed bugs. Since bed bugs die in extreme temperatures, use a steamer on couches or mattresses. If it’s over 95 degrees Fahrenheit outside, put infested items in a black plastic bag and leave them in a car. Or you can seal contaminated items in a bag and freeze them for at least four days.

Get rid of bed bugs once and for all

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STEP 8: Monitor the affected areas and be ready to treat them again.

Bed bugs remain a persistent nuisance because they can hide easily and multiply quickly. After a homeowner has treated any areas they think may be infected, they should monitor them for the next few hours and days to make sure the bed bugs do not return. If so, they will need to treat the area again.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Hire a professional

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STEP 9: Hire a professional.

If bed bugs are not treated thoroughly, it can create a cycle in which they will return. Homeowners who want to get their job done quickly and efficiently – or who are struggling to completely eradicate their infestation – should hire a professional.

STEP 10: Prevent Bed Bugs From Returning.

To prevent bed bugs from returning, homeowners should check previous hotspots to check for bed bug eggs at least once a week. You should also practice frequent cleaning methods such as regular dusting and vacuuming.

Getting rid of bed bugs is a relatively straightforward process, but the tenacity of the bed bugs can make it difficult to eradicate the infestation. If the above do-it-yourself methods don’t work, or additional bed bug bites appear on the skin, homeowners should seek help from a professional to take care of the infestation.

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