How to get rid of bed bugs

Bedroom treatments for bed bugs

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There are two ways of getting rid of bed bugs, it’s either on your own or asking for help from a bed bugs exterminator. The below methods are DIY but have you ever asked yourself what are the best pest control methods to get rid of bed bugs?

Although there may not be a mattress on the market that can completely prevent bed bugs from crawling under the covers with you, there are mattress encasements that do the job well.

Mattresses That Prevent Bed Bugs 

Although there may not be a mattress on the market that can completely prevent bed bugs from crawling under the covers with you, there are mattress encasements that do the job well.

Encasements are used to cover your entire mattress to protect against bed bugs. These encasements will not let bed bugs get into your mattress, and nor will they let them leave if they end up trapped inside. These encasements have proven to be successful and a popular choice to protect bedding.

If you are in the market for a bed bug encasement, some recommendations are the BugLock® Encasement, that has been tested and been one of the most effective. They are said to be escape and bite proof.

If you have an infested mattress and you are planning on tossing it away, you should first place the mattress into a completely encased seal before throwing it away. Inspect that there are no holes or cuts where the bed bugs may fall out as this can cause a new infestation. Especially if you are moving the mattress through a condominium, dorm, or any other dwelling with other residents. These blood suckers will hitch hike anywhere and find their way into another unit and someone else’s bedroom.

Can changing the temperature in your home kill bed bugs?

Killing bed bugs with heat is one of the most efficient and safe methods you can use without the help of an exterminator. Bed bugs can only withstand so much until they dehydrate and die. Bed bugs won’t survive temperatures above 116 degrees Fahrenheit. This is why it is recommended to put your clothes in the dryer after returning from your travels to kill them off.

On the other hand, bed bugs can live in temperatures as low as 46 degrees Fahrenheit. These drastic changes in temperatures does not leave us many options to get rid of them easily, but it is possible. According to the Journal of Economic Entomology, a study published proved that bed bugs could freeze if the temperatures were to drop as low as 32 degrees Fahrenheit for a period of 80 hours. If the bed bugs were exposed to temperatures below 0 degrees Fahrenheit, there is a greater chance they will live no longer than several minutes.

It is possible to freeze your items if you find bed bugs in them. Terminix.com says that if you were to freeze the center of your bedding, you would have to measure the correct temperature with a remote thermometer. You will have to complete this treatment for four days.

Freezing bed bugs can be a difficult task and pose more challenges than killing them with heat. The best way would be to use the heat treatments as they are proven to be more effective than freezing and much easier.

Using heat to kill bed bugs can involve several methods:

  • You can place your garments into the drier at the highest heat after the wash. Bed bugs will not be able to withstand the heat from the dryer nor the motion and will successfully die in the process.
  • If you choose to take the steam route, keep in mind that it will not simply kill all of the bed bugs, as it does not deep clean enough. For steaming methods, it is preferred that you use it only on your pillows, curtains, blankets, bed frames and box springs.
  • The more expensive options

Commonly Asked About Items to Get Rid of Bed Bugs

Over the years, people have become fascinated with ways to kill bed bugs on their own, but which products work and which do not? This list offers several items that are most commonly asked if they work or not:

Mothballs

Mothballs are a pesticide that contain ingredients called naphthalene and paradichlorobenzene. Both of these chemicals are extremely toxic and can damage your health if not used properly. They have high concentrations of these toxic ingredients, that are strong enough to kill pests, but also negatively affect people that are exposed to them.

Mothballs can damage air quality and their odor alone can be highly dense. But should mothballs be used to treat bed bugs? According to Changlu Wang, at the Entomology 2013 conference, said that mothballs do not kill bed bugs. They tested this by placing mothballs in a bag of infested clothes for a week in a plastic bag, but this test failed. Even eggs, and baby bed bugs seemed to survive the mothballs, and only up to 60% of the adult male bed bugs died.

Vacuuming

Vacuuming up bed bugs seems to be the top option for DIY bed bug treatment. While it may suck up some of the bed bugs, it will not clear up the major infestation problem completely. For maximum effectiveness, this treatment must be done properly. A proper handheld vacuum suits this job best. It must also be powerful enough to suck up everything. Standard vacuums may not do the job well enough. After completion, the vacuum bag should be emptied carefully. Do not dispose of the bag too close to your house as the bugs may come crawling back inside. Simply vacuuming will not do, it must be done at the same time as other eradication methods for a better success rate.

Washing Clothes

Washing your clothes is an important step in getting rid of bed bugs. It is an effective bed bug killer but it will not clear your infestation problem. Washing machines and dryers are so powerful that bed bugs cannot resist them. Yes, they can survive a wash but cannot withstand the dryer heat. Ensure you are consistently washing at the highest temperature as well as drying. Bed bugs do not like the heat. Do not think that you will drown the bed bugs. If they are simply on top of water, they will float. The motion of the washing machine can kill bed bugs. Bed bugs will definitely not withstand the dryer. After the 30-minute dry, they will surely be dead. This should also kill the bed bug eggs. The dryer must reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit for kill bed bugs and their eggs. It is possible to kill the bed bugs between 113 to 115 degrees, but this will require you to leave your garments in the dryer longer. There is no harm in drying your clothes longer, in case there may be bed bug eggs still latched on. Bed bug eggs can survive a lot and just to be sure, and if your clothing fabric is strong enough, you can leave them in the dryer for a while longer.

Before transporting your items to another room, place them in clear, sealable plastic bags. Put those items that need to be washed in these bags and after placing your clothes into the machine, put the used plastic bags into a new plastic bag to ensure none have escaped. Always take as much precaution needed when doing this task.

All in all, using your washer and dryer is a safe and effective method for killing bed bugs in your home. Make sure you are taking the right steps for safe transportation of clothing in order to avoid spreading the infestation.

Bleach

Clearly, these pests are resistant to many pesticides and products, but does bleach kill bed bugs? Yes, indeed it can. Bleach is a very harsh chemical. It probably is not a good idea to go around your house spreading bleach on all of your furniture and walls. There are alternatives to that. Bleach, if used directly on bed bugs, can kill them and dehydrate their shells. Bleach is a good option for post treatment as it can sanitize and disinfect surfaces an no harm will be done by using it.

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How to get rid of bed bugs