You’ll know you have bed bugs when you wake up covered in small red marks, that get increasingly itchy as the day passes. It’s not a pleasant feeling. The red marks can also start to blister.
If you pull back your bed covers you can examine your sheets, small dark red marks will be apparent, this is where you’ve rolled over and squashed the bugs, or is simply traces of your blood from their bites. The bugs themselves are about the same size as an apple seed, but you’ll struggle to see live ones as they hide during the day.
If you have a bed bug issue then you need to know how to get rid of them permanently. Part of this involves utilizing the following steps, the other part is knowing the local exterminator and using their services.
Getting a pest control expert involved means you’re certain to have eliminated the issue. Doing it yourself does leave the possibility of bed bugs surviving and returning.
Bed bugs can’t survive in high temperatures. Place all the soft furnishings from your bedroom into the washing machine and then dry them in a dryer for at least 30 minutes. This will kill the bed bugs.
However, you should bag all fabrics from your bedroom and carry them to the washing machine in the bags, this will prevent them from falling off along the way and starting a new infection.
You’re going to need to deep-clean this and you can’t put it in the washing machine!
A stiff brush can be used to scrub your mattress all over, this will loosen any eggs and allow you to vacuum the mattress, removing all traces of the bed bugs.
After vacuuming, empty the vacuum into a bag and seal it shut, preventing the bed bugs from escaping.
Inspect Your Room
The tiny cracks in your walls are the perfect hiding spot for bed bugs. It’s time to fill them all, preventing the bed bugs from creating nests and laying eggs.
It’s not just cracks, lifting wallpaper offers an alternative spot, you’ll need to remove it or re-adhere it properly.
Bed bugs can live in clean or dirty homes. The key is to eliminate potential hiding places for them. That means de-cluttering. Books, boxes of magazines, and other items that are rarely used need to be sorted, cleaned, and, if necessary, disposed of.
The steam cleaner is a great friend at this point. It’s hot and kills eggs, as well as the bugs.
Get a steam cleaner and move it slowly across all your fixed soft furnishings, such as couches and carpets. Make sure the temperature setting is at least 160°F.
You also need a low airflow setting, you want to kill the bugs and their eggs, not send them flying somewhere else in your home.
Keep It Up
The trick is to maintain this level of cleanliness and attention to detail at all times. This will dramatically reduce the chances of an infection returning.