Bedbugs: A Communal Issue

Experts are predicting another spike in Bedbug infestations as the travel season nears. So what are you or we going to do about it? Since many people already know that the chances of Bedbug infestation increase when you travel, taking precautions is crucial. Last year I wrote “ 4 Tips for Travelers” which contains very simple steps to take when staying in a hotel but what do you do at home?

People are susceptible to Bedbug infestations all of the time. Since Bedbugs have been found in offices, theaters, retail locations, in mass transit vehicles, taxis and anywhere else people are or go, prevention isn’t easy or the responsibility of a few. People that live in apartments, condos, co-ops and or townhouses must get together to work out a preventative plan for when a Bedbug infestation is suspected, due to the transient nature of this insect.  Is there a budget for professional inspections? Does it include Canine Assisted Inspections? What is the plan for when Bedbugs are found? What are the treatment options? These are all questions that should be asked and answered with a comprehensive Bedbug strategy for multi-family dwellings. What about people that have house guests? Do you not let the person take their bags into your home? Do you have them strip, take their clothes to wash them, fumigate their belongings and give them the all clear before they enter your home?  The answer to all of these questions is probably no but there things that can be done to identify or prevent a Bedbug infestation in your home.

Bedbugs: An issue for the masses

The first step is to install Bedbug-proof mattress and box spring encasements. This will protect the preferred hiding spot for Bedbugs (after all why should we make it easy for them?). Next would be to install non-toxic Bedbug traps/monitors to help identify a potential issue as soon as possible.  These steps are a no-brainer if you have a guest room or just have frequent house-guests. You can also discretely treat your house guest’s bags or your own (if you travel frequently) with a small portable heating chamber called the PackTite Portable Bed Bug Killing Heater Unit.

The PackTite Unit

Another simple step to take is to wash and dry any and all new clothing, curtains, blankets, etc. that you purchase from a store. Since these items could have been returned from another customer and restocked by store employees, you should assume the worst. If the items cannot be washed just place them in the dryer on high for 20 minutes.

If you purchase second-hand furniture or take a piece of furniture from someone, be sure to thoroughly inspect it for Bedbugs and droppings which are small dark brown to black specs (dried blood) possibly located in the cracks and crevices throughout the item.

We will probably never completely eliminate Bedbugs from the modern world but we can certainly do things to make it difficult for them. We must all be aware and educated on some simple strategies and if an issue is suspected, call a professional.