Bedbugs tend to sneak into your home by hitchhiking a ride on clothing, furniture, or luggage. The bugs have even been known to travel on a child's backpack. The bedbugs, which are aptly named because they tend to reside in mattresses and bedframes, also thrive on couches and other furnishings. These parasitic insects usually feed about once a week. However, when food is scarce, they can live for months without a meal. The bugs are particularly bothersome because they feed on the blood of warm-blooded mammals, including humans. They typically eat at night and retreat to a hiding place during the day.
Once a bedbug infestation occurs, it can be difficult to contain, often requiring several professional pest control treatments. Thus, it is best to avoid an infestation altogether. Here are a few precautions you can take to protect your home from a bedbug infestation:
Be Sure to Inspect Recycled Furniture
Second-hand furnishings may serve as an entry point for bedbugs into your living space. As a result, when you find a great buy at a thrift store or purchase furnishings from a neighbor, it is important to inspect the items thoroughly for signs of infestation before bringing the furniture into your home.
Small rust-colored stains, tiny black dots, and transparent, pale insect shells can indicate the presence of the bugs. The rust-colored stains are caused by crushed bugs and blood from the hosts during detachment. The dark spots are often from the insects' excrement and resemble tiny ink stains. The shells are left by molting nymphs as they grow into adulthood.
Encase Mattresses and Boxsprings
By applying protective covers to your mattresses and box springs, you can eliminate the bugs' most popular hiding spaces. As you select protective covers, look for light-colored encasements. The light hues make it easier to see any invading bugs.
In addition, the covering material that you select should be tear-resistant. Holes or rips in the material allow the bugs to travel beneath the covering, invalidating its protection.
Clutter throughout your living space can provide additional places where the bugs can hide. As you notice a build-up of items that are regularly unused, discard or donate them.
By vacuuming regularly, you can trap any errant bugs in the bag of the appliance. After vacuuming, seal the vacuum's contents in a plastic bag and discard the bag in an outdoor receptacle.
If you suspect that you have a bedbug infestation, schedule a consultation with a pest control specialist in your local area.
For more information on pest control, contact Insecta X.