Bed bugs are becoming an increasingly common issue and preventing them from ever entering our homes is the best way to keep ourselves safe from them. To help you protect your home from bed bug infestations, we have compiled a list of 5 practical tips to prevent bed bugs.
1. Regularly Check the Bedroom
To proactively identify possible bed bug infestations and catch them at the earliest signs of activity, it is important to regularly check for any signs of bed bugs. These include their eggs, shed skins and adult bugs in the creases, cracks and folds of the mattress and the bed frame, around the headboard and on any surfaces near the bed.
Know What to Look Out For
It is important to be able to spot the signs of a bed bug infestation. Not only can they leave a distinct smell, they can also leave behind small, red-brown spots of dried insect excrement which can be found on sheets and mattresses. Adult bed bugs are small, flat and delicate reddish-brown insects. They can be difficult to spot due to their minuscule size and their ability to blend in with their surroundings.
Check the Bed Frame and the Walls
Bed bugs can be found in other parts of the room aside from the bed, such as the bed frame, headboard, furniture, wall and floorboards. Do a thorough inspection of the entire room for signs of them. The more regularly you inspect for bed bugs, the better you will be able to monitor any changes or activity in the room and you will be able to take prompt and effective action if needed.
2. Vacuum your Bedroom Regularly
Vacuuming the room on a regular basis is very effective for removing any bed bugs, their eggs and their sheds skins. Bed bugs often like to hide in fabrics, carpets and soft furniture, so it is important to thoroughly vacuum these areas. Make sure to also vacuum all of the edges and crevices that bed bugs like to hide in.
Empty the Vacuum Bag After.
After you have vacuumed, make sure to take a look at the bag while it is still in the vacuum cleaner to check whether you have vacuumed up any bed bugs. If you do find them, dispose of the bag in an outdoor bin immediately and change the filter.
Use an Insecticide
You can use an insecticide before vacuuming as it will provide more comprehensive protection against bed bugs by killing them on contact and disabling any eggs that could remain. Be sure to read the instructions carefully before use and take caution not to come into contact with the chemical.
3. Thoroughly Wash and Dry all Bedding
Regularly washing and drying all bedding and clothing in the bedroom can help to reduce the chances of a bed bug infestation. Hot water and a high heat cycle settings will be able to kill any bed bugs that may be living on your bedding.
Minimize Clutter in the Room
Any clutter in the bedroom such as piles of clothes, paper or bags provide the perfect hiding place for bed bugs and harbor them to spread. To minimize their movement, it is best to have an organized and minimalistic bedroom.
Check any Second Hand Items Before Bringing them Home
Make sure to inspect any second-hand items such as furniture, clothes or bedding before bringing them home as they can often be a source of bed bugs. If possible, leave them in a well-lit area for a few days so that you can confirm that no bed bugs are present in the items.
4. Use Bed Bug-Proof Mattress and Pillow Protectors
By having a mattress and pillow protector, you will be able to create a barrier between the mattress and the bed bugs and trap the critters inside. This will prevent them from entering your bed and will help contain any existing bed bug infestations.
Choose the Right Kind of Protector
When looking for a mattress or pillow protector, be sure to choose a protector made from a tightly woven fabric such as cotton or polyester. This will ensure that bed bugs are not able to bite through which will prevent potential infestations.
Wash the Protector Regularly
In order to make sure that the sample of the protector is kept at bay, it should be washed in hot water and dried on a high heat setting on a regular basis. If the protector is not kept clean, then it can become a haven for bed bugs and other insects.
5. Seal off Gaps and Cracks
Bed bugs are adept at finding small openings and cracks in the walls and floorboards which they can use as entry points into our homes. To keep them out, it is important to seal off any potential openings or crevices in the walls and floors so that they cannot enter.
Fill any Cracks or Openings
Any cracks and openings in a room should be sealed up with caulking to make sure no bed bugs can get in. This includes places around windows and doors, as well as electrical outlets and vents. The more cracks and crevices that are filled, the better protection you will have against these pesky critters.
Check for Damaged Screens
Windows screens are also an area which should be checked for any tears, damages or holes as this can be an entry point for bed bugs. Be sure to also check the seals around windows and doors and make sure to repair any damage that is found.
People Also Ask
How often should I check for bed bugs?
It is recommended to check for bed bugs at least once a month, but it is best to check more frequently if possible.
Can bed bugs transmit diseases?
No, bed bugs do not transmit any diseases nor do they feed on blood directly.
What can I use to kill bed bugs?
Insecticides such as sprays and powders are effective for killing bed bugs.
Do mattress and pillow covers work for bed bugs?
Yes, mattress and pillow covers can create a barrier and trap bed bugs.
How often should bedding be washed and dried?
It is recommended to wash and dry bedding regularly, at least every couple of weeks.
By taking these 5 practical steps, you can protect your home from the annoyance, stress and health risks associated with bed bug infestations. It is important to remember that the more proactive measures you take, the better you will be able to guard against bed bugs and prevent them from making your home their home.