So you inspected your furniture and luggage and found evidence or real bugs- now what? First thing- don’t panic! With proper treatment it is possible to eliminate bed bugs from your home. That being said, DO NOT go out and buy do-it-yourself bed bug killer, this can actually make your problem worse! Instead call a licensed professional to inspect and treat your home. Also, at-home “natural” treatments such as alcohol spray, essential oils and dryer sheets are not known to exhibit any efficacy when it comes to bed bugs.
All pest control companies perform their bed bug treatments differently and depending on the area you live in, certain treatments may reign over others, such as a heat treatment vs. chemical approach. While BedBug Central is NOT a pest control company and doesn’t perform treatments, we do train other companies around the country about our “No Prep” methodology and integrated treatment methods that we’ve found work the best.
- “No Prep”- Typically pest control companies have clients do extensive preparations before they will come out to do a bed bug treatment. These preparations can include stripping and laundering linens; removing clothes from closets and dressers, laundering, and then keeping everything in plastic bugs until treatments are over; moving furniture including flipping beds and box springs; and the list can go on. BedBug Central believes these preparations are unnecessary and can actually prolong infestations by scattering bugs. “No Prep” means using the biology and behavior of the bug against itself. We know bed bugs have to feed, so why not put obstacles in their way that will catch and kill them? “No Prep” doesn’t mean no cooperation but instead focuses on an assessment based approach to each bed bug infestation and goes hand-in-hand with the use of interception devices.
- Interception devices- These devices do exactly what it sounds like- catch bugs in transit to or from sleeping and resting areas. They are non-chemical, require little maintenance and can be used with or without lures.
- Vacuums- A good old-fashioned vacuum is very effective when it comes to cleaning up large groups of bugs and cast skins. Make sure to empty your vacuum in an outdoor trash after each use so as not to spread bugs around.
- Steam- We know that heat kills live bugs and eggs so we recommend using a steamer when evidence of bugs is found.
- Mattress and box spring encasements- Encasements are imperative to any bed bug protocol because they can salvage infested mattresses and box springs. We know box springs are favorite harborage spots for bed bugs, so instead of taking time to treat them (sometimes over an hour) why not just trap the bugs inside so they can’t get a meal and eventually die? They also make inspections easier because they are white and allow you to better see fecal spotting and live bugs.
- Dusts- Dusts like CimeXa and diatomaceous earth (DE) work like that desiccant package inside your new shoes- they kill bugs by drying them out. Just remember, when it comes to dust, a little goes a long way. If you can see piles of it so can the bugs and they will avoid it.
- Liquid chemicals- The key with chemicals is rotation, rotation, rotation! A lot of resistance has been shown among bed bugs so it’s best to use more than one type of chemical on successive trips. Use chemicals with some known residual activity so they are working even when you aren’t there.