Bed bugs are a nightmare. They’re tiny, hide in the most inconvenient places, and are incredibly difficult to get rid of. These little creatures can cause a lot of sleepless nights, not to mention some serious itching and scratching.
But don’t lose hope! With proper treatment and precautionary measures, you can get rid of bed bugs and protect your home from future infestations.
To help you in this process, we have created this practical guide that sheds light on how you can get rid of bed bugs and protect your home. Continue reading this article to identify and remove bed bugs.
What Are Bed Bugs? What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?
Bed bugs can be a major problem. No matter which part of America you live in, it is likely that you have faced the effect of these creatures. Despite this fact, many homeowners are confused as to what bed bugs look like? Don’t worry; we are here to help.
Bed bugs are small, oval-shaped insects that feed on the blood of humans and animals. They are nocturnal, which means they are most active at night.
They usually have a reddish-brown color, and they have a flat-shaped body that tends to grow as they feed. Bed bugs will not be easy to notice, thanks to their tiny size. These bugs have a size of about 5-7mm, which is about 3/16 to 1/4th of an inch. So the size of these bugs is no longer than an apple seed or the tip of a pen. Their bodies are divided into three sections–the head, the thorax, and the abdomen.
However, you should not underestimate them just because of their size, as they can cause you a lot of harm.
How To Find Bed Bugs?
Knowing how to identify bed bugs is essential if you’re worried about an infestation in your home. Bed bugs are very small in nature, but they can cause a lot of damage and spread disease if they’re not treated right away. Here are some of the early signs of bed bugs that can mean that these are ready to damage your property.
1. Bites and Itching
One of the ways you can know that bed bugs are inside your home is if you notice red or dark red bite marks on your body. Bites can be a warning sign of bed bugs. If you notice bed bug bites on your skin, especially if they look like a rash or red bumps (like mosquito bites), then it’s possible that you have bed bugs in your home. Bed bugs tend to bite you usually when you are asleep at night. The most common parts where bed bugs are likely to bite are your back, neck, arms, and legs. They may occasionally bite other parts of the body too.
However, you should note that not every bite is due to bed bugs. This can also be a sign of the presence of mosquitoes as well.
2. You Notice Blood Stains
If you see some stains, scratches, or blood on your bed sheets or surrounding areas such as mattresses, or pillows, then this can be a sign that bed bugs are in your home. As we talked about earlier, these creatures are flat in nature but tend to get bloated as they feed on blood. If they get killed during the night, these bed bugs leave small, reddish-brown spots of dried blood on linens as they feed during the night. These spots can be found in clusters or by themselves.
3. You Smell That Something Is Wrong
Bad odor is the most common sign of bed bugs. If you notice a bad odor coming from your bedroom, it could be a sign that bed bugs have made their way into your home. This is because bed bugs have been known to emit an unpleasant chemical smell when they are disturbed or crushed. The odor can also be triggered by the presence of fecal matter, so if you notice this smell, it’s essential to check both your mattress and pillows for signs of an infestation.
4. Eggs Laid By Bed Bugs
According to various experts, a female bed bug can lay over 500 eggs in her lifetime, or up to 10 eggs per day. If you do not identify these bugs quickly, your home will soon be infested with these eggs that can hatch in 7-10 days. The eggs of bed bugs are small and yellowish-white, and they’re usually found in cracks and crevices in the bed frame or mattress. Like the creatures themselves, their eggs are also extremely small, about 1mm in size, so you have to look for them carefully.
The main sign of bed bugs is feces, which look like dots or smears of black or brown. Bed bugs leave behind fecal matter wherever they go—so don’t be surprised if you find evidence on the mattress, in the folds of the sheets, or even in your hair! These feces are not only harmful but are hard to wash away as well.
How Do Bed Bugs Enter Your Home?
Bed bugs run after blood, and like other insects and mosquitoes, they cannot fly. Since these cannot be in the air, you might wonder how they came into your home in the first place. Below we have listed some of the most common causes of bed bug infestation.
- Purchasing used beds or other furniture, such as sofas, couches, etc., can bring bed bugs with the item.
- Guests in your home can unknowingly bring bed bugs with their luggage.
Tips On How To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs
Above we have described how bed bugs enter your home, and you should be able to identify how you get bed bugs, and how you can identify that your home is now filled with these insects. Now let us move to the core of this blog, i.e., how to get rid of bed bugs. We have shared some of the steps that you can take to get your home free from these little creatures.
Ascertain Where The Bugs Are
Before you can kill bed bugs, it is important to locate the areas they are currently present. Before starting, you should know about two things. First, bed bugs, like other mosquitoes, tend to live in groups. Second, they spend most of their time hiding in certain places, and due to their miniature size, they can easily do so. To find where they are hiding, look for the following:
- To find where the bed bugs are hiding, look in cracks and crevices near the bed.
- Another place to check is under the mattress and box spring.
- Check behind headboards and baseboards.
- Bed bugs can be found inside furniture, drawers, closets, and other furniture.
- Look in between the couch cushions.
The best way to locate bed bugs is to start looking at night and carry a flashlight with you.
Try To Contain The Bed Bug Infestations
Now that you know where these bugs are, it is time to contain them. This is an essential step so that you can stop further infestation and avoid damage in the future. Here is how you can do it. Once you have done all of the above, use a hand-held vacuum to remove bed bugs from furniture and other crevices. With the help of a vacuum, you can trap bed bugs so that they do not multiply.
Vacuuming will remove dust and debris, but it will also get rid of scurrying bed bugs that try to hide. Make sure you vacuum the vulnerable areas, such as near the bed, furniture, and carpet.
After you use the vacuum, make sure that you seal the contents in a bag and throw it away as soon as possible. This strategy is a very effective way to curb the rise of live bed bugs.
The NPMA also suggests incorporating preventive measures such as mattress encasements, reducing clutter, and being vigilant when traveling to prevent bed bug infestations.
6 Ways To Kill Bed Bugs
As stated in the previous steps, containing can help to remove only the live bugs. To keep your home free from these bugs, you need to kill them altogether. Here are some of the ways to kill bed bugs.
#1 Use Temperature To Your Advantage:
Bed bugs cannot resist extreme temperature changes. So one of the best ways to kill them is to use temperature changes to your benefit. Wash all your linens and clothes in hot water with detergent for at least 30 minutes. After washing, you need to dry your belongings on high heat for another 30 minutes.
If you can’t wash the items, freeze them for at least 48 hours before drying them in a hot dryer. This could also kill the bed bugs. Dry cleaning is not recommended because it doesn’t kill bed bugs; it just removes their eggs from clothing fibers.
#2 What To Do With Furniture?
Bed bugs can damage the furniture as well. If you are not able to clean the infested furniture, it is best to throw it away so that it does not harm anyone else.
#3 Use Chemicals For Effective Treatments
Natural treatments will not harm you but can take time to actually be effective. Killing bedbugs isn’t easy. They’re tiny and hard to find, so it can take a lot of time and effort before you see results. You can use several different chemicals to get rid of bed bugs.
Bedbugs are a pest that can definitely ruin your day. The best way to kill them is with insecticides. In most cases, you can use pyrethrins or pyrethroids. These are one of the best insecticides to kill bugs. These are a class of insecticides that contain synthetic versions of naturally occurring chemicals found in chrysanthemums (pyrethrum). However, some bed bugs may be immune to their effect, and you may need to find a different alternative.
#4 Use Bug Bombs
Use bug bombs—Also known as foggers, these are aerosol sprays that contain chemicals that kill insects when they breathe them in. They’re easy to use and effective at getting rid of bugs quickly and easily. However, these products can be highly toxic.
Try using bug bombs in all the places where you think there might be bugs, and then take some time away from your home or go out for a few days so that you and your family are not harmed. Also, read the instructions thoroughly before using the product. You can check out this video that shows how to use bug bombs safely.
#5 Follow Up/Monitor The Affected Areas
Bed bugs come in large numbers. Even after killing them, there is a possibility that some of them are still present near your bed. After using the various treatments listed above, it is crucial to monitor your home for a few weeks to make sure that the bed bugs do not enter again.
The most important thing for you to do is to be proactive and start cleaning everything in your home that could have been infested.
#6 Call A Professional Pest Control Company
You can follow all the tips given above, but it can be difficult to handle a bed bug infestation alone. Using some treatment methods, such as insecticides and bug bombs, is not easy.
To avoid further damage to your home, you should hire a professional exterminator.
Treating bed bugs can be expensive and time-consuming. It’s best done by a professional pest control expert who will know precisely how to get rid of those pesky insects once and for all. A professional pest control specialist can help determine whether or not your home is infested, and what type of treatment would work best for your situation.
Get The Best Bed Bug Treatment In Memphis, Tennessee
Getting rid of bed bugs is a serious matter, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. We hope that this guide will increase your knowledge after reading it, and you will be well aware of the steps you need to take in order to remove bed bugs from your home. However, doing the treatment yourself may not be as effective and can cause more harm than good.
If you want a professional bed bugs removal service, then make sure that you contact the team of Jamison Pest and Lawn. We are one of the best pest control companies serving several areas of Tennessee. Our team has over 77 years of combined experience in the pest control industry, and we are one of the most respected pest control companies in Memphis, TN. Our experts have been trained to use the best treatments for bed bugs and other pest infestations. Contact us today at (901) 452-1505 to learn how we can help.