Just the thought of having bed bugs is enough to make your skin crawl.
These critters can be frustrating, but there are ways to get rid of them so you can get a healthier night’s sleep – and you really should because they’re not bugs that you should ignore.
What are bed bugs?
Bed bugs are small, flat insects that feed on human blood. If you wake up with skin rashes, blisters, or allergic symptoms, bed bug bites could be the culprit.
Based on the above, there’s no doubt that you have to get rid of them ASAP.
Here’s our guide on how to get rid of bed bugs effectively so you don’t have to feel freaked out about going to sleep.
- 1 What Causes Bed Bugs?
- 2 Follow These Steps To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs
- 2.1 Step One: Clean Your Bedroom Thoroughly
- 2.2 Step Two: Give Your Mattress And Bedding A Deep Clean
- 2.3 Step Three: Vacuum Everything
- 2.4 Step Four: Use A Steam Cleaner
- 2.5 Step Five: Do DIY Repairs Around The Room
- 2.6 Step Six: Use Mattress Encasements
- 2.7 Step Seven: Remove Items You Don’t Want In Your Bedroom
- 2.8 Step Eight: Use A Low-Toxic Bug Killer
- 2.9 Step Nine: Make Sure You Monitor The Situation
- 3 Related Questions
- 4 Conclusion
What Causes Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs are travellers.
They tend to enter your home from infested areas. Imagine you’ve stayed overnight at a hotel.
If the hotel bed had bed bugs in it, these bugs could have got into your luggage or purse and found their way into your home and bedroom.
They can also move from one apartment complex to another.
Another way in which bed bugs can gain access into your home is via furniture, whether new or used.
That’s why it’s always important to inspect any furniture that you bring into your home, checking under cushions and in seams or cracks.
Once they enter your bedroom, bed bugs can live quite comfortably in a range of different places, not just in your sheets.
They can hide in your headboards, blankets, mattresses, box springs, piles of clothes, underneath peeling wallpaper, and underneath carpets.
Although bed bugs are unable to fly or jump, they can run quickly.
If left to their own devices, bed bugs can result in an infestation, which makes it even more difficult to eliminate them.
This is why you should get rid of them as quickly as possible.
Follow These Steps To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs
So, you’re probably wondering what you should do to get rid of bed bugs.
Instead of calling the professionals, there are some useful steps you can follow to send bed bugs packing.
Ideally, you should follow all of the below steps instead of just sticking to one or two. This will increase your chances of eliminating these stubborn insects.
Step One: Clean Your Bedroom Thoroughly
One of the most important ways to eliminate bed bugs is to clean your room.
Remove clutter, such as piles of clothing, where bed bugs can hide. Take down your curtains and wash them in hot water.
Other items, such as stuffed toys and shoes, that can’t be washed should be put in the dryer.
Run it on high for 30 minutes to kill any bed bugs that could be in those items.
Step Two: Give Your Mattress And Bedding A Deep Clean
Your mattress is a hotspot for bed bugs so make sure you clean it properly.
With a stiff brush, scrub down your mattress, focusing on areas such as the seams in which bed bugs like to hide.
Make sure you finish off by vacuuming the mattress well.
However, if this doesn’t help and you think your mattress has a bed bug infestation, it could be a better idea to get rid of it.
Just make sure your room is clean and free of bed bugs before bringing a new, clean mattress into your bedroom otherwise you could end up with the same problem all over again!
As for your bedding, you want to wash it in hot water for half an hour.
Then put it in your dryer and dry it for half an hour on its highest heat setting.
Put it on your mattress after it’s been thoroughly cleaned to prevent the transfer of bed bugs onto your clean sheets and blankets.
Step Three: Vacuum Everything
Use your vacuum cleaner on your headboard, box spring, dressers, foot boards, and other items.
Since bed bugs can attach themselves to surfaces, you need to use the end of your vacuum attachment to pull them out of their hiding places.
However, don’t use a bristle attachment as this could cause you to transfer bed bugs from one area of the room to another.
When you have finished vacuuming your mattress and other items in your bedroom, make sure you carefully dispose of your vacuum cleaner bags by sealing them up and putting them in the outside trash.
Step Four: Use A Steam Cleaner
Once you’ve vacuumed your bedroom, you can also use a steam cleaner.
Either wet or dry, a steam cleaner is useful because it can reach into cracks and fabrics, as well as bed frames.
Make sure the steam you use is at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
Avoid using a powerful airflow as this can scatter the bed bugs. You want to use a diffuser to prevent that from happening.
Step Five: Do DIY Repairs Around The Room
Seal up any cracks in the wallpaper, wall skirting, and wall plaster, as these are perfect spots for bed bugs to hide.
Step Six: Use Mattress Encasements
Once your mattress is clean, or you’ve purchased a new one, put a zippered encasement on it.
A good one to try is SafeRest Premium Zippered Mattress Encasement (available from Amazon).
Make sure you cover your box spring too.
These covers should be zipped all the way so that new bed bugs won’t be able to enter them and if there are any bed bugs in your mattress, they will become trapped and die before they can get to you.
Step Seven: Remove Items You Don’t Want In Your Bedroom
If you want to remove anything from your bedroom, make sure you seal it up in a plastic bag.
Don’t put it somewhere else in the house because if it’s infested with bed bugs you could transfer them to another room in your home!
Step Eight: Use A Low-Toxic Bug Killer
If the above steps are not enough and you’re still being harassed by bed bugs, you’ll need a bug killer.
Ideally, you want one that can control bed bugs and kill their young before they spread, without being harmful to your health.
A good product to try is Rockwell Labs Cimexa Dust Insecticide (available from Amazon) that can be used in various areas, such as any cracks in your home, mattresses, and carpets.
It doesn’t have a smell and it’s a non-staining product. Cimexa Dust is a silica powder that’s safe for humans and animals.
How it works is that the dust gets attached to the insect’s exoskeleton and this dries out the insect by dehydration, which kills it.
You should apply the Cimexa Dust in places that the bed bugs frequent so that they will come into direct contact with it.
Step Nine: Make Sure You Monitor The Situation
You have to keep an eye out for bed bugs even after you’ve followed the previous steps to eliminate them.
You might still see some bed bugs, which is why you have to remain persistent to properly eliminate them.
If you see more bed bugs, make sure you vacuum clean them away.
It’s also a good idea to vacuum your furniture and floors on a daily basis. Make sure you wash your bedding every few days to ward off bed bugs.
To avoid bringing new bed bugs into your home, always be careful when arriving home from trips.
Vacuum-clean your bags, clothing, and luggage to be sure that you haven’t transported bed bugs into your home.
How can you spot if there are bed bugs in your bed?
You might see blood spots on your sheets, which are caused when the bed bug bites through your skin, or small spot spots of faecal matter.
Should you see a doctor for bed bug bites?
See your doctor if your skin shows signs of infection, such as swelling and pain. You might have to be prescribed an antibiotic.
For extremely itchy bites, you might need a mild steroid cream or antihistamine tablets.
Bed bugs are a nuisance and their bites can result in skin conditions such as rashes.
In severe cases, they can cause allergic reactions, which is why you want to eliminate them from your home.
In this article, we’ve looked at what bed bugs are, where they are found, how they get into your home, and how you can eliminate them for good and have a good night’s sleep.