Bed bugs are on the rise in the United States and they do not play favorites. Anyone can get them when traveling, when visiting friends and family, when purchasing new or used furniture for your home or business, and even from house guests. Learn why this happens so you can avoid bringing bed bugs into your home or business.
1. USED FURNITURE
Used furniture is the top way to get bed bugs. If you don’t know where it came from it is not wise to bring it home. Chances are that the used furniture you see at a garbage dumpster is infested with (Cimex) bed bugs! It doesn’t matter if it is a bed frame, a mattress, a box spring, a dresser, a nightstand, or a couch, if bed bugs are present; they are coming home with you.
TIP: Bed bugs can last up to 6 months without a blood meal, so don’t make the mistake of trying to wait them out.
2. USED CLOTHES:
People throw out clothes all the time, especially those that are infested with bed bugs. If you or someone you know is a dumpster diver, then chances are that many of their “treasures” might have bed bugs. People also will donate their used clothes that may have bed bugs still living in them because people usually cannot stand the thought of throwing clothes away. If you buy used clothes, keep them in a plastic bag until you can wash and then dry them. Bed Bug eggs have been known to survive a good washing but it is a proven that they cannot survive the heat of a dryer.
TIP: Drying bed bug infested clothes for 25 minutes on high heat in the dryer will kill any live bed bugs, and their eggs.
When you stay in a hotel, or motel, bed bugs can get into your luggage, your clothes and will come home with you if you are not careful. If you stay with friends or family and they have bed bugs, chances are you will bring bed bugs and or their eggs home this way too. The best way to prevent being a carrier of cimex lectularius (bed bugs) and allowing this to happen is to inspect the bed and room before you sleep in it. You should also use the chrome luggage rack and if you have a hanging bag, keep it hung up and zipped up too. Don’t ever put your clothes in the wood dressers or leave your items on the floor if you can avoid it.
TIP: The Bedbug registry is a great tool to find out if the place you’re staying at has prior reported bed bug outbreaks. Check it to see if there are reports by entering the hotel or motel address you’re staying at. It’s not 100% accurate because anyone can make an entry and it doesn’t always have the most accurate information for a specific location but it is a good barometer.
4. HOUSE GUESTS:
If a friend or family member comes to stay with you, they could be bringing bed bugs with them and into your home. It’s hard to approach your loved ones to discuss the subject of bed bugs but once you experience the hassle and cost of cleaning up a bedbug infestation, it will get easier to have the conversation first!
TIP: Bed bugs don’t discriminate. They don’t care how clean you are, how dirty you are or how much money you make. Bed Bugs just want your blood so be aware.
5. NEXT DOOR NEIGHBORS:
If you live in a multiunit apartment or house bed bugs can infest your rooms by traveling on clothes, backpacks, purses, or wiring behind the walls.
TIP: You cannot pick your neighbors so short of moving, keep a watch on your complex’s garbage dumpster to see if any of your neighbors are throwing away mattresses, couches, chairs or other large items that they could probably sell.