Reports of bedbugs are on the rise giving many people sleepless nights, and expect the infestation to get much worse before it gets better.
Oval, wingless, and a quarter of an inch long, bedbugs love to bite while you're sleeping. And, that's their problem. You aren't sure if they're actually there or where they're hiding.
There are visual clues: little black specks in your bed, sheets, and pillows, that don't move nor brush off. This is bedbug fecal matter. Other signs include:
- Itchy welts
- Blood stains on sheets or pillowcases
- egg shells or shed skins near where bedbugs hide
- a bad and musty odor from the bugs' scent glands
Although bedbugs are a menace, they are not a health concern. Professional exterminators claim a combination of heat, isolation, and targeted pesticide will get rid of any infestations.
But you absolutely need a professional.
In fact, getting rid of the stubborn pest without the help of a professional is the real menace. As infestations abound, homeowners and apartment dwellers are relying on their own judgement to get rid of bedbugs. This has sent many people to the hospital and even costed lives.
One story tells how a mother of 5 used pellets of phospine, an industrial pesticide which produces a lethal gas upon contact with the air. The consequences were harrowing.
However, There are things you can do before a professional eradicates any infestations.
First and foremost, hire an exterminator to come in and professionally solve the problem. In the meantime, try not to move your sleeping location or start sleeping in a different room because you may then spread that infestation to a different area of the house.
It's also recommended you throw out any belongings that may be infested with bedbugs such as mattresses and clothes. But before you replace any ruined possessions, ensure you've gotten rid of every last bedbug.
Bedbugs have been known to survive up to 18 months without eating. Thus, having a professional come and inspect your home or residence for signs of the pest is essential to prevent the infestation from getting worse and to eradicate it altogether.