The global market for bed bug control products and services was worth $1.93 billion in 2021. Come 2028; experts project that to grow to $3.52 billion.
One possible reason for that growth is the expected rebound in the travel industry. For instance, in the U.S. alone, almost half of surveyed Americans said they plan to travel this 2022. Bed bug infestations, in turn, often increase due to travel.
So, if you’ve recently traveled yourself, you might be facing a potential infestation. In that case, it’s best to learn more about the bed bug control mistakes you’d want to avoid at all costs.
This guide goes into more detail about those errors and what you should do instead, so keep reading.
1. Using the First Pesticide You Grab
Pyrethrins and pyrethroids are the most common chemicals used to control indoor pests. They’re effective against ants, fleas, flies, mosquitoes, and moths, among many others. Unfortunately, some bed bug species have become resistant to these pesticides.
Resistance occurs when exposed insects survive pesticide exposure. It often results from failed or improper treatment.
Thus, standard pyrethrin or pyrethroid insecticide is unlikely to kill bed bugs. It can even make existing populations develop further resistance. That can make a bed bug infestation even more challenging to eradicate.
2. Not Using the Pesticide as Directed
Up to 80% of pesticide exposure occurs indoors. Moreover, research has found up to a dozen of these chemicals in indoor air.
The problem is that many pesticides can cause adverse health effects on people and pets. For example, exposure to them can result in eye, nose, and throat irritation. It can even damage the central nervous system and kidneys and raise one’s risk for cancer.
Because of those side effects, most anti-pest chemicals are only for outdoor use. So, always look at the label of the chemical bed bug solutions you plan to buy before using them. If they explicitly say they’re for outdoor use, don’t spray or apply them indoors.
It’s also imperative to use only the amount listed on a pesticide’s label. If it doesn’t help and work the first time, applying more isn’t going to solve anything.
Lastly, avoid applying chemicals on your bed unless their instructions say you can. Otherwise, you might be at risk of poisoning or skin injuries caused by direct exposure.
3. Sleeping Over at Someone Else’s House
Red, itchy, and swollen welts on the face, neck, arms, hands, and legs are common signs of bed bugs. They usually go away after about a week or two without treatment. However, if there’s a massive infestation, you can expect the number of bites to increase.
The more you get bitten, the higher your odds of experiencing sleep problems. For example, you might develop insomnia, anxiety, or even trauma from the attacks. There’s also a risk of skin infections occurring due to constant scratching.
All those sleepless nights can force you to vacate your home and sleep somewhere else.
Don’t; otherwise, you might bring a few hitchhikers with you. Instead, focus on treating the infestation at home as soon as possible.
4. Vacuuming Only Your Bed
The term bed bugs is a misnomer because these blood-suckers don’t only invade beds. They can also conceal themselves in wall cracks, baseboards, floors, and upholstery. For a deeper look into their hiding places, you can check out this page to learn more.
Because bed bugs have many hiding spots, it’s imperative to vacuum your entire house. Start with the room where you’ve woken up with bites, and then make your way to other rooms. Remove clutter as well, as these provide the pests even more places to hole up.
5. Not Sealing the Vacuum Bag Properly
After tidying up your home and giving it a thorough vacuuming, carefully take the bag out of the machine. Place it inside another plastic container and then seal it securely.
If you have black plastic bags, you might want to use those and place them under direct sunlight. Adult bed bugs die when exposed to a heat level of at least 113° Fahrenheit for 90 minutes.
If you have children or animal companions, please ensure the bags are out of their reach. Otherwise, they might tamper with the containers, and if those pop open, the critters may hang on to them.
After cooking the pests under the sun for a few hours, place the bags in an outside garbage bin.
6. Throwing Out the Mattress
Bed bugs infest mattresses and bed frames because they give the pests easy access to hosts. So if you also sleep on the couch, you can expect them to follow you there. That’s why it’s not wise to throw out your mattress if you have an infestation.
Besides, even if you buy a brand-new mattress but don’t remove the pests, it’s not going to solve anything. The bugs hiding in cracks and crevices will only invade the new beddings.
Instead of throwing away a mattress or a frame that’s still in good condition, vacuum them. Then, cover your bed with a high-quality protective encasement.
7. Not Hiring a Bed Bug Exterminator
Vacuuming your entire home from top to bottom may not be enough to control a massive infestation. Therefore, if you still get bitten, it’s best to hire a pest control professional. However, be sure to go with a company specializing in integrated pest management (IPM).
IPM combines reliable pest control methods and doesn’t rely on pesticides alone. Instead, it incorporates non-chemical approaches, such as cold, heat, and steam treatments. Such methods can also treat your belongings, so you may not have to throw anything out at all.
Avoid These Bed Bug Control Mistakes
Please keep in mind that while bed bugs may not transmit diseases, their bites can still make you feel ill. The thought alone of being unable to sleep well can already make you feel anxious.
So, don’t make things any harder for you by committing common bed bug control mistakes. Follow our tips instead.
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