There is little worse to wake up to than discovering that you’ve been visited in the night by bed bugs. To many people, having bed bugs in a home can be traumatic, and it isn’t an isolated problem.
Bed bugs are a worldwide issue. One report from ABC News back in 2017 stated that there had been a 5,000 percent increase in these pests since 2000. It isn’t just poorer countries and nations that are more likely to have bed bugs, it isn’t just low-rent apartments either. Although there are many examples such as these, bed bugs also infest perfectly clean and modern homes in the west.
Bed bugs may be the stuff of childish bedtime rhymes and warnings not to let them bite, but they are no fun when they are sharing a home with you. So, how do you get rid of them, and what will be the cost?
What exactly are bed bugs?
If you are unaware of what a bed bug is then bravo, you’re probably fortunate to never have encountered them. However, for many holiday goers, travelers, and regular residential homeowners and tenants, they represent horrible experiences and memories.
Bed bugs are tiny insect-like creatures that can multiply rapidly, and then hide in cracks, gaps, and in furniture and mattresses. The most unpleasant thing about bed bugs is that they live off of blood, so they feed on anyone who is in the vicinity.
Mostly they come out at night, but they aren’t restricted to this time at all. Due to their mostly nocturnal activities though, many people don’t realise they have bed bugs until they have already bred a large populous.
How do you determine that you have a bed bug concern?
There are many tell-tale signs that you have bed bugs, and the usual way people realise this is through bite marks. Some people don’t react at all, while others will have itchy swollen red bumps where they have been bitten. These can sometimes be in a line, though not always.
Why you have them is another reason. If you have suddenly got mice in the home then there are reasons why. But, bed bugs are a little different in how they arrive than some other pests.
Many pests can be prevented from invading a home, but bed bugs aren’t attracted to a location in the same way that mice or cockroaches might be. Bed bugs often arrive concealed in luggage and clothing after traveling. Or, they may come in secondhand furniture that is infested, or they may travel from nearby rooms such as a neighbour’s apartment.
Guesthouses across the world are renowned for having bed bugs, and backpackers unwittingly help move these pests around. Once in a building, they can spread from room to room breeding and feeding.
How much will you spend to get rid of bed bugs?
Bed bugs are one of the most awkward pests to eliminate from a home or any building. Cockroaches and termites are the two other worst pests to discover living with you.
With this said, you would expect bed bug treatment to be expensive, but it might be more affordable than you thought. Typically, a pest control expert would price a quotation by the number of rooms that need treating.
So, a bed bug treatment cost might be not only affordable but something you wish to hire experts for. Some quotes for bed bug treatments range from £30 to £90 per room. A home might only need one room treated, but return visits may be needed.
Can you eradicate bed bugs by yourself?
As mentioned above, bed bugs are one of the toughest pests to remove from any building. This is because they are adept at hiding, and they breed incredibly quickly. Starving them out isn’t practical either. Fully grown bed bugs can live for over a year without feeding, so unless you are planning an extremely long vacation, your bugs will still be at home waiting for your return.
Nevertheless, there are ways to kill bed bugs, and hopefully, see you getting a better night’s rest. One method is to use DE or diatomaceous earth. This is a natural product that is largely harmless but will kill bed bugs effectively. One problem is that you will have to scatter the dust everywhere you think the pests are and hope they all wander through it.
What can you do to remove bed bugs from your dwelling?
There are some other methods that will help to lower the number of bed bugs you have, but they are unlikely to ever get rid of an infestation fully.
Washing clothing and materials at a high temperature can help. Drying them in the sun also helps to kill the bugs. Alternatively, do the opposite and freeze linen and clothing. This will also be fatal to bed bugs.
Scrubbing items with a hard brush to remove eggs, regular vacuuming, and throwing out any furniture that you know to be infested will help.
Do you need an exterminator or pest control expert?
Regardless of all the things that you can do to lower the population of bed bugs, most often some serious help is needed. Bed bugs are tough little pests, and an infestation can mean you have hundreds or thousands of them.
Pest control experts will have experience with bed bugs, and an infestation shouldn’t be ignored. While bed bugs don’t harbour diseases, they can cause allergic reactions according to the EPA, and also affect mental wellness over time.
With tourism coming back, you may be planning a nice holiday. Nevertheless, there are things you need to do when staying in a hotel, and one of them is to look for the presence of bed bugs.
If you are unfortunate enough to stay in a hotel or guesthouse with bed bugs, you could end up bringing them home. If this happens, and you have at least one male and a female, you could see an infestation in a very short time.