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Think bed bugs are plaguing you and your home? Well, that may actually turn out to be true! According to a study, 90% of single-family homes in the country do have bed bug infestation!
These blood-sucking, sleep-depriving pests were also found in 89% of apartments and condos. And yes, they also love motels and hotels, being present in almost seven in 10 of these buildings.
Although they don’t transmit disease, these pesky insects can still cause health issues. These include allergic reactions, secondary skin infections, and yes, even insomnia.
All that should be enough reason to implement bed bug prevention at home. The sooner you do, the sooner you can keep them from reproducing. Luckily, they don’t spread too fast, as they only lay one egg a day that takes about seven weeks to become an adult.
Ready to keep bed bugs out of your life? Then let’s dive right into it!
Successful Bed Bug Prevention Starts With Knowing What They Look Like
By knowing their appearance, it’ll be easier for you to spot them and get rid of them before you step into your home. So, how big are bed bugs, and what’s the best way to describe them?
Adult bed bugs have an elongated, oval-shaped body. Think apple seed in size and shape, although the insect’s bodies are reddish-brown. If they haven’t fed yet, their bodies are flat, but if they have, their bodies may take on a balloon-ish appearance.
We get that always checking yourself, and your bags for these pests may be a little too tedious. It’s important, though, especially if you use public transportation. You should also be more attentive if you’ve been to a place with bed bug sightings or infestation.
Flush Them Bed Bugs out of Your Car
Speaking of vehicles, yes, bed bugs can be hitching a ride back to your home in your very own car. It’s even possible for you to pick up bed bugs in car rentals, riding, and sharing services (AKA Uber and Lyft)! Let’s not forget cabs, buses, subway, and other public transportation means.
Either way, these are some of the modes of transfer used by these pests to enter and infest a home. Especially famished bed bugs, which don’t mind traveling up to 100 feet in search for a meal.
That said, you should also check your car for signs of these pests. Even if you don’t spot them, you should still clean and vacuum your ride regularly. Completely getting rid of bed bugs that may be hiding in your car can stop them from entering your home.
Inspect Your Entire Bed Regularly
Whenever you change bed linens, look for bed bugs and other signs like blood spots and droppings. Their feces, often black or rust-colored, look like marker-sized dots appearing in clusters. Be on the lookout for cast skin too, which look exactly like the bugs themselves (albeit empty).
As for bed bug eggs, they look like grains of uncooked white rice. They’re tiny, long, and are white or a bit transparent. Like bed bug droppings, they also often appear in clusters.
Check your mattress as well, particularly the folds, seams, and tufts. These areas offer the bugs a good hiding place to burrow in. Also, before putting new sheets on, give the entire bed (and even the bedroom) a thorough vacuuming.
Invest in a High-Quality Mattress Cover
Take your prevention program a notch higher with a mattress cover. This helps make future bed bug inspections easier. Setting up bed bug traps under the legs of the bed can also help notify you right away of possible infestation.
Pay Attention to Second-Hand Goods
With used furniture costing 50% less than a brand-new one, they’re no doubt a tempting bargain. Plus, going