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MARCH 03 2022 /
Bed bugs are small but fearsome pests that can easily make their way into your Maryland home when you aren’t looking.
It’s important to understand the basics of bed bugs to prevent them properly.
Bed bugs may be small, but they bring with them several common misconceptions and a few serious risks to your Maryland home.
Many individuals think that bed bugs can only appear in dirty homes, but the truth is that bed bugs infestations can happen to anyone.
This pesky insect is adept at hiding out and hitchhiking from place to place either in your clothing or luggage, meaning that it is easy to pick up bed bugs and transport them back to your home or business.
Bed bug hotspots include hotels and motels, airports, trains, offices, gyms, schools, dorms, and libraries. Bed bugs frequent these areas due to the number of people passing through regularly.
You may also introduce bed bugs into your home by purchasing second-hand furniture or appliances that are already infested.
Once you bring these items into your home, the bed bugs will spread out and cause a full-blown infestation.
⭐ Get rid of those mattresses
When bed bugs become noticeable, your first reaction may be to throw out all your mattresses, or, at least, the one that seems to be infested.
This hardly ever solves a bed bug problem, though, because bed bugs don't just live in mattresses.
They can live in your upholstered furniture, in baseboards, under the edge of your carpets, inside your outlets, and in many electronic devices.
⭐ Mattress encasements
If you bring up the topic of bed bugs to someone you know, they may suggest mattress encasements for all your mattresses. This is a great idea, for the most part.
It will definitely work to keep any bed bugs that are in your mattress from getting out to feed. And, those encasements will work to keep new bed bugs from getting in.
But, as stated above, bed bugs don't just live in mattresses. They can be anywhere in your home.
⭐ Bed bug traps
In your search for answers you may come across a DIY page that shows you how to make a bed bug trap. These traps work on the premise that bed bugs are attracted to CO2.
When bed bugs are lured into the trap by CO2, they are killed.
The problem with these traps, whether you buy them commercially or make one yourself, is that they only work partially, if at all.
Though it is true that bed bugs are attracted to CO2, there are many more factors that lead them to a blood meal.
These traps may catch some bed bugs, but you'll still have bed bugs in your home, and you will still get bit.
⭐ A thorough cleaning
You might be told that vacuuming your entire house and washing all your bedding on the hottest temperature is the way to get rid of these bugs.
Though it is true that the practice can help to reduce bed bugs, they do nothing to kill bed bugs living in your walls, electronics, or furniture.
⭐ Heat your house to 120 degrees
You may learn that heating your home is a good way to kill bed bugs. This is absolutely true.
But, at best, those bugs will flee into your walls and come back when the heat is gone.
At worst, doing a heat treatment can burn your home to the ground, if not done properly.
⭐ Professional treatment
Choose a professional who has advanced thermal remediation equipment with heat sensors that regulate temperatures throughout your home during the heat treatment.
At American Pest, we have the experience needed to make sure your Montgomery County home, your belongings, and your family, are safe through the entire process. And we'll make sure those bed bugs are completely gone.
⭐ You should refrain from putting your baggage on the ground in any area you travel through, especially hotels and motels.
Use an elevated surface to rest your luggage on to prevent bed bugs from crawling into it while you sleep.
⭐ Before sleeping, pull back sheets and mattress covers and check the corners. Bed bugs typically hide out here.
You may also want to look for any red or rust-colored stains on the sheets, as these indicate bed bugs.
⭐ Use a flashlight to check corners and gaps in hotel room walls and floors or the seams of furniture in other bed bug hot spots.
Bed bugs typically gather in small, hard-to-reach areas, and a flashlight can illuminate them.
⭐ Wash and dry any clothing you traveled with on high heat as soon as you return home.
You may also want to keep a regular washing schedule of any clothes that have gone to the office, schools, or gyms, as the heat will kill any bed bug hitchhikers.
⭐ Place all second-hand items on a white sheet outside of your home before moving them in.
Check for any red or rust-colored stains on the sheet once they’ve been there for a few hours, as these stains indicate bed bugs are present.
⭐ Use gloved hands to run your fingers along the seams and gaps in furniture and appliances.
If your glove comes back stained with a red or rust color, or you unearth dead bed bugs, you shouldn’t bring the item into your home.
⭐ Check the seams, cracks, and gaps in all furniture and appliances with a flashlight to ensure no bed bugs are hiding inside.
Due to their small size and expert hitchhiking skills, bed bugs are a challenging pest to prevent.
If you do end up with bed bugs in your home, call the professionals at American Pest.