How To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs
Here are the few key steps on how to get rid of bed bugs:
Identify The Problem: How Do I Know If I Have Bedbugs?
• Red Pimples Or Stings On The Body
Bedbug buttons often look like mosquito bites. They are often grouped in series of 4 or 5 bites. Be careful, not everyone reacts to bedbug bites, so just because you don’t have pimples doesn’t mean you don’t have bedbugs! Bedbugs bite on exposed parts of the body, and pimples can appear up to several weeks after the bite: so do not be fooled when the bedbug pimples are discovered, as the bites may have taken place for several days. before!
• Traces Of Bedbug Droppings
The traces of bedbug droppings are small black or brownish stains that you will find on or around your bedding, but also in the furniture, sofas, chairs, drawers, rugs or curtains, baseboards and parquet floors in your home. Its signs are evidence of the presence of bedbugs . Bed bug droppings look like a stain of black ink made with a fountain pen. If the droppings were made on sheets, mattresses, or curtains, they are absorbed by the fabric. If the droppings were made on baseboards, or any other hard surface, then they dry out and leave a perfectly round mark.
• Blood Stains On The Sheets
The bite of a bedbug lasts between 5 and 15 minutes. It therefore remains on your skin for a fairly long time. If you move at this time, you risk crushing the bedbugs, and it leaves a bloodstain on the sheets in the form of a line, or comma. Don’t hesitate to put on white sheets and watch your sheets and pillows every day.
Example of a trace of blood on a bed sheet caused by the crushing of a bedbug
• Presence Of Insects, Eggs, Or Molts
Bed bugs hide very well, so they are very difficult to see unless they have a heavy infestation, and therefore a high number of insects. The eggs are small (about the size of a pinhead), and in clusters, they are sticky and stick to where the bugs have laid. They are white and look like small grains of rice. Bedbug molts are empty shells, which are exactly shaped like a living bedbug. They are transparent and off-white in color.
To look for these clues, you often have to dismantle your bedding, move your furniture, and arm yourself with patience, and perseverance. You can also call on Rocky, DogScan’s bed bug detector dog, who will be happy to come and inspect your home. You will know within minutes whether or not you have a bedbug problem in your home!
Measuring The Importance Of The Infestation: How To Measure The Extent Of A Bedbug Infestation?
If the clues are numerous and easy to find, then you surely have a significant bedbug infestation: act as soon as possible! Here are some tips to help you gauge the severity of the problem.
• The Number Of Bites
If you react to the bites, then the number of bedbug pimples on your body will be an important clue. A bed bug usually bites 3 or 4 times. So each little group of buttons corresponds to a pushpin. Bedbugs most often bite every 3 or 4 days if they are sexually active, but can easily wait 15 days between 2 meals. It is therefore impossible to precisely determine the extent of the problem by the number of bites, but overall, if you have more than twenty bites on your skin then you probably have a significant infestation.
• The Amount Of Droppings Stains
The larger the infestation, the more droppings you will find. At first, the stains are concentrated around your bedding, but the more bedbugs there are, the more the problem spreads. Rocky and Julie Gaultier have already inspected a home where there were droppings stains right up to the coat rack in the hall! If you find very few stains, and concentrated on the mattress, then this may give us the impression that you don’t have many bedbugs yet. On the other hand, if you find many stains, and far from your bedding, then beware! It may mean that you have a very extensive problem, and quite important …
• The Amount Of Traces Of Blood
If you get blood stains on your bed sheets every morning, then that often means you’re stung a lot. So we can imagine that you have a lot of bedbugs. However, some people never move when they are sleeping, so they will not have traces of blood in their sheets. Conversely, some people are moving all the time, and we can find many spots even if the infestation is still low.
• The Presence Of Bed Bugs
Of course, if you regularly see bedbugs in your home, or if you find nymphs (bedbug larvae): then this is not a good sign. The bedbug is a discreet insect, which usually only comes out at night: finding it in broad daylight, easily, often means that there are a lot of bugs hidden elsewhere.
Target The Affected Areas: How Do I Know Which Areas Of My Home Are Infested?
Once you have identified the problem and tried to measure the extent of the infestation, you must then know which areas of your home are infested in order to be able to organize an appropriate treatment.
• Look For Clues
A careful visual inspection of your home is essential to try to find any clues of bedbugs mentioned above. Each area where you find clues should be considered contaminated, and should be treated following a very strict protocol. To look for clues, you have to dismantle the bedding, move each piece of furniture, take a good look in the baseboards, nightstands, sofas, etc. It takes a long time!
• Canine Detection
Unfortunately, looking for clues with the naked eye is not very efficient. You will not be able to find all the bedbugs hidden in your home. They are so small that they hide everywhere. They are often found in unlikely places such as bathrooms, kitchens, broom closets or basements. Why ? Often, the washing machine is in the kitchen, and it is by moving the dirty sheets that we bring back bedbugs on the floor in front of the washing machine. Then the bedbugs run and hide behind the kitchen furniture. We find the same problem in the bathroom. They also hide in the broom cupboard since this is where you store the vacuum cleaner, and it often happens that we vacuum it up without doing it on purpose when cleaning. When we have a cellar, we sometimes take down an old piece of furniture, or summer clothes when winter arrives, and to get off bed bugs with these objects. Movements of objects and physical movement are therefore responsible for the spread of bedbugs in your home.
The only way to identify all the bedbug hiding places before a treatment is therefore to use the canine bedbug detection , which, thanks to its highly developed sense of smell and specific training, can locate all living bugs as well. than healthy eggs in your home. You can then organize a targeted and effective treatment to get rid of bed bugs in your home.
How To Organize Treatment To Get Rid Of Bedbugs?
Once all the contaminated areas have been identified, you can start organizing your treatment. The first things to do are:
• Wash The Laundry
Wash all your linens at 60 degrees or higher, and tumble dry your belongings. Then put your things in plastic bags so that they do not get recontaminated by bedbugs. If your laundry does not go to 60 degrees, contact DogScan for other laundry treatment techniques.
• Clean Up
You should throw out any old magazines, papers, or unnecessary things that are lying around your house. Be careful not to throw anything in the street: passers-by could recover your items and contaminate their homes!
• The Vacuum Cleaner
Vacuum everything, including electrical outlets, baseboards, door moldings, high corners, etc., being careful to throw out the vacuum bag when you are finished.
Once your accommodation is tidy, the big cleaning is done, and your laundry has been washed and bagged, it is time to consider a treatment!
What Types Of Treatment To Choose? Chemical Or Mechanical?
There are 2 types of treatment against bedbugs: chemical treatment, based on insecticide, and mechanical treatment, based on elbow grease!
• Mechanical Treatment
Mechanical processing is the continuation of the preparations you have just made. Using a steam machine (dry or wet) you have to go over each surface of your home. It’s long and exhausting, but very effective since the steam kills bedbugs and eggs (unlike insecticides which don’t kill eggs)
• Chemical Treatment
After having properly prepared your home, call in a qualified and approved insecticide who will come twice at 2 or 3 week intervals to apply insecticide products in your home. If all the contaminated areas have been identified, and prepared, then the treatment is very effective, provided you come across a serious professional who put the right product and the right dose! During a DogScan expertise, Julie Gaultier gives you the name of several serious and efficient pest control agencies that you can trust for the application of the product.
After The Treatment, How Do I Know If I Have No More Bedbugs?
• A Canine Inspection
A canine inspection is the fastest and safest way to verify that you are free from bed bugs. DogScan’s dog, Rocky, like a drug or explosives detector dog, will let us know if there are any live bugs or healthy eggs left.
• Bed Bug Bites
If you reacted to bedbug bites before, and you have no more bites: it’s a good sign! This does not mean yet that you are completely out of the woods since you may have bedbugs elsewhere in your accommodation: it will take time for them to find their way back to your bedroom, and for them to start again. sting you.
• The Traces Of Blood In The Sheets
Put on white sheets and watch your fitted sheets every day: if for a period of 3 months you have no trace of blood: it’s a good sign!
• Traces Of Droppings
As with blood stains, put on white sheets and monitor your bedding daily: your mattress, the seams of your bed, the slats of your box springs, your bed feet … If you don’t see any new traces: you are on the right track !
What If I Still Have Bedbugs?
If you still have bed bugs, then this could be due to several things:
• You Misidentified The Contaminated Areas
If you have not correctly identified the contaminated areas before doing a treatment, then it is normal that you still have bedbugs in your home.
• You Have Not Prepared Your Accommodation Well
If you did not wash, vacuum, tidy up and organize your accommodation for the treatment, then this can also be the reason for the treatment failure.
• Bed Bugs Are Coming Back From Elsewhere
Sometimes your neighbors are infected, and bed bugs come back from their homes. You may also have brought up a contaminated object from your cellar. Your kids napping at school may also have brought back bedbugs from nursery. The different possibilities are numerous, and very difficult to analyze. Do not hesitate to ask for help from a professional who will help you see more clearly!
• The Professional Who Applied The Treatment Did Not Do His Job Well
Unfortunately this happens much more often than you think! There are very few serious professionals in the bed bug business. It is necessary to respect the doses of products: not enough, it does not kill the bedbugs, too much and it scares them away. It is also important to apply the insecticide, everywhere and evenly: easy to say, but not easy to do!
• Bedbugs In Your Home Are Resistant To The Products
This is still rare, but we can observe more and more cases in France. When a home has been contaminated for a long time, and bedbugs have been exposed to the products often, they can develop a tolerance to insecticides, and even become resistant! So be careful not to buy off-the-shelf products or try to apply products yourself: the repercussions can be worse than you imagine!
Getting rid of bed bugs is therefore no easy task… There are a lot of factors that can make you miss your treatment!
How To Stop Getting Bedbugs?
• Know How They Got There
To stop catching bed bugs, the first thing to do is identify the first source of infestation. Did you bring them back from a hotel? If so, be careful not to go back. Did you catch them from a friend’s house? By your neighbors? By public transport? By a hospital stay? Understanding how the bed bugs got to your home will allow you to take the necessary steps to avoid making the same mistake twice!
• Remain Vigilant During Your Stay At The Hotel
In the vast majority of cases, we catch bed bugs after staying at a hotel. The next time, before settling in your room, inspect the edges of the bedding, the headboards and the bedside tables, to verify that there is no indication of the presence of bedbugs. Also avoid putting your bags and suitcases near the bed, and if possible keep your belongings in the bathroom.
• Monitor Your Accommodation
Thanks to regular cleaning and good monitoring of your home, you will be able to react as quickly as possible if you are unfortunately again contaminated by bed bugs!