We get a LOT of e-mail questions about BedBugs at BedBug News Reports.com. They usually start with: “What the hell can I do to get rid of these #%* BedBugs?”
Hello my tasty-human friends. I’m MrBedBug, Chief SpokesBug for FLfresh.com and EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator. I am a TV star on MrBedBug-TV on YouTube and Editor of the BedBug News Reports.com
Our goal around here is to educate, so lets take today’s letter and see what we can learn. Like Kasey Kasem used to say, “This long-distance dedication comes to us from Connie in Columbus, Ohio”.
Dear Mr BedBug,
“What can I do to get rid of these #%* BedBugs?”
I’ve paid pest control companies to come out (twice) and a heat treatment guy made big promises too. They all had me sign paperwork that I understand there are “no guarantees”, but the only thing guaranteed is that the BedBugs are back in my house.
My kid has BedBug bites down his leg, so he looks like he has the measles. I’m pregnant and worried about being around the toxic chemicals I just read about on your blog-thing.
What do I do?
Signed, Concerned in Columbus, Ohio.
Dear Concerned (Connie)
I’m [the famous] Mr BedBug, and I’m here to help. I’ve selected your letter to post as a teaching-example [ FYI- I’ve also sent Teresa a personal e-mail, to discuss her specifics further].
You are not alone. Every major city in OHIO is on the Top 50 Most BedBug Infested Cities list, and OHIO is the #1 State. Congratulations?
Lets take your letter apart, one item at a time.
First, Pest control contractors charge a LOT of money, because unlike roaches or ants, BedBugs are a BIG Problem for them too. BedBugs are sneaky. We think you are so tasty. After we finish eating an all-we-can-eat [of YOU] buffet, the remaining bite marks are proof that we are [still] present in your home.
Pest control contractors won’t tell you this, but roaches and ants are STUPID. They just wander around looking for filth, grime and moisture to consume. If they walk thru “poison” or eat a bait trap, they will die. If they smell a poison, they will just wander-off in another direction. There ARE roaches and ant in your home/office, but a “barrier spray” will keep them unseen. That doesn’t mean they aren’t there, but it’s a “good enough” result for most homeowners.
BedBugs don’t eat filth or grime, and don’t care whether your house is “clean” or nasty / filthy. BedBugs are also increasingly immune to the chemical sprays used by pest control contractors. This is why there is an ever increasing escalation in the “War on Bedbugs”. The harsh, toxic chemicals that are the “go to solution” for pest control companies have evolved and gotten ever-more dangerous. [This why…IF you are going to use a pest control contractor you should ONLY consider those that are VERIFIED to have a CURRENT state-license and have “Bond” insurance to protect YOU from damage, employee theft in your home and other “accidents”] The best professional will tell you that some of these treatments can have residual effects on kids, the elderly, many pets [especially fish and birds].
Bedbugs are also the insect-world’s best hide-and-seek players. We are REALLY good at hiding. This poses a problem for homeowners and pest control companies. If you can’t find us, you can’t KILL us.This is why Bedbugs are such a problem. Both the D-I-Y homeowner or super-expensive pest control contractors have the very same challenge. –Play Hide-and-Seek, then try to KILL the Bedbugs–. If you don’t kill ALL the Bedbugs, [including the eggs, waiting to hatch] you have only partially [and temporarily] “solved” the problem. When the eggs hatch, the “War” starts a new battle front, all over again. At this point let me talk about “heat treatments”, since you mentioned it. In the “generic”, this is a really effective way to KILL BedBugs, BUT [and there is always a but] the “devil is in the details”. Forced air/heat can raise the temperature in your home, up to a point that all the BedBugs die. [minimum 125 degrees] Sustained exposure to these temperatures would kill you too. The problem is: Heat treatments are an “art” and not the most effective treatment in all situations. Depending on the size / floorplan of a home [or office building], it takes skill and experience to get the temperatures “up” in every “nook and crannie”. Cool spots don’t kill Bedbugs. How experienced is the heat treatment company? For the average retail consumer, that is a difficult question to answer. [*I*, the famous Mr BedBug have discussed heat treatments in more detail elsewhere on the BedBug News Reports.com web pages]
If you use a pest control company that sprays for roaches, they want to spray every job to kill BedBugs…. because they spray. Heat treatment companies do heat treatments, whether it is the most effective in your situation or not. They sell you heat treatments. Pest control professionals are like plumbers, dentist, accountants and lawyers. Some are PerryMason or Matlock and some are not.
Before I conclude with some advice, take some comfort in the knowledge that BedBugs do not spread disease. Your child and your pregnancy will not be immediately effected by your current BedBug infestation. Yes, you need to get it resolved, but no it won’t effect your baby. [ Remember I am the famous MrBedBug, not DR BedBug, your Doctor may have a different opinion. ] BedBug bites are VERY itchy for some tasty-humans. Others are “non-reactive” and never even notice the BedBug bites. As long as you son doesn’t scratch the bites, he should not see lasting effects. “Scaring” would come from scratching and “digging” at itchy bites, not from the BedBug bits themselves.
OK, lets get to some real advice. [again, I’ll write this for readers who follow Teresa, since she’ll get personal advice from me.]
Start by getting help. Pregnant women are NOT helpless, but you’ll be moving furniture, lifting stuff, doing laundry….there is work to be done. You will need help.
Next, I’m going to assume that you have a pretty well involved infestation. It takes a lot of Bedbugs to bite a child enough to make them “look like they have the measles”. [that’s your quote]
If you are a renter…. Talk to your landlord [nicely] about this problem. It is easier [and cheaper] for them to fix the problem, than to replace you as a tenant and deal with the legal issues associated with BedBugs. Many States, counties / Cities have laws on the books about BedBug infestations. The landlord is “responsible” in EVERY single situation where laws specifically mention BedBugs. In those places where there are NO [specific] mentions of BedBugs in the law, Courts / Code Enforcement officers and Judges almost always require the landlord to “fix the issue”. Having said that: YOU still have work to do. There will be plenty of cleaning, lifting, laundry and other chores to do. [Read more advice about how to clean a BedBug infestation in an Apartment, elsewhere on the BedBug News Report.com pages]
If you are a homeowner, You are on your own, but you can Do-It-Yourself clean a BedBug infestation. It’s not fun. It’s not easy. It’s not a one-hour chore, on a Saturday afternoon, like mowing the lawn. You can NOT just spray stuff around and expect to see results. You need to LEARN “How to Kill BedBugs“. It’s not a secret or complicated, You CAN do it yourself, and the most effective steps, from 1 to 10 are “known”. You must just be willing to follow the [unfortunately, well-worn] path of others who have been successful. If you choose to spend the money to hire a professional PCO [Pest Control Operator] PLEASE, use State Licensed] pest control companies. Either way, you will need to have a real plan, and do the work needed. There is not state-license required to use [non-toxic, kid-safe + pet-friendly] EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator].
Learn more facts about BedBugs at www.FLfresh.com We have compiled all the latest research, plus effective “Tips and Tricks” on how to avoid a Bedbug infestation. There are many options you can use to clean a BedBug infestation in your home or apartment/condo and workplace. Separate FACT from FOLK-LORE and Myth at www.FLfresh.com We are also the national distributor of EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator. It is a non-toxic [kid-safe and pet-friendly] way to KILL BEDBUGS.
The more you know about how BedBugs live, hide, feed, breed and travel, the better you can protect yourself from BedBugs.