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How to Prevent and Treat Bed Bug Infestations

 Bed bugs can be an extremely irritating and persistent problem, and since they only tend to come out of hiding at night, can often be hard to detect early enough. Thankfully, there are quite a few ways to prevent or get rid of bed bugs before an infestation gets out of control, and here are 7 of the most efficient methods:
 
 
1. Carefully Examine Your Bed

In order to locate any hidden bed bugs, the first places that you need to inspect are any place people sleep, such as beds, couches or armchairs. Carefully inspect mattresses, cushions, sheets, blankets, and even bed frames. If you spot anything that could potentially be a bed bug, then use a vacuum cleaner to scoop it up, discarding the bag outdoors when you're done. You should also wash your sheets in isolation, making sure to inspect them again once they're clean. If necessary you can also use an interceptor, which is a sticky card that can help trap bed bugs.

2. Check Other Places

If you're sure that your bedroom is free of bed bugs, then it's time to focus on other areas of your home. All you need to search the rest of your home is a flashlight and a credit card. Simply move the card along every crevice and crack in your home to push the bed bugs out, using the flashlight to help you spot them. Make sure that you're as thorough and careful as possible, using hot soapy water to wipe away the bugs, eggs, droppings, blood stains, and shed skin off of your furniture.

3. Declutter Your Home

Bed bugs simply love clutter, so if you want to avoid them ever visiting (or returning) then make sure to keep your place as neat and tidy as possible. Discard anything that you don't really need, instead of just piling it all up in your attic or basement.

 
4. Wash Your Bedding Frequently

When dealing with bedbugs, it's essential to clean your blankets and sheets as often as possible, along with any fabric curtains that touch the floor, too. Use the highest temperature that each fabric can withstand both for washing and drying. We'd also recommend cleaning your laundry baskets regularly too since bed bugs have a tendency to lay their eggs there.

5. Use Steam or Heat

Bed bugs are very resilient creatures but will die if exposed to a temperature of 118°F for 20 minutes or 113°F for 60 minutes. A commercial steamer can quickly reach such temperatures, however, you can also use a black plastic bag to get the job done. Simply place all infested items into the bag and leave it out in the sun for a few hours. The heat that builds up within the bag should be more than enough to kill all of the bed bugs.

6. Try the Freezing Technique

Bed bugs don't just dislike the heat, they hate the cold just as much! To get rid of bed bugs, simply place the infested items into a freezer, set the temperature to less than 0°F, and leave them there for more than four days. During this time, try to open the fridge as little as possible, to prevent the temperature from ever rising above zero.

7. Use Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth is the fossilized remains of aquatic organisms known as diatoms. The particles of this fine powder have sharp, microscopic edges which cut through a bed bug's exoskeleton, thereby dehydrating and killing them. Sprinkle some of this powder anywhere which might be infested, but avoid anywhere where you directly eat or sleep, such as on kitchen counters or on your mattress. Make sure you wear a mask to avoid any particles entering your lungs.


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