There are a variety of bed bug treatments, ranging from home-made preventatives to professional pest control.
Do-It-Yourself Bed Bug Treatment Options
Many people start with a do-it-yourself approach, which can work well for prevention and killing bed bugs that have been collected while traveling. The unfortunate downside to a lot of home remedies is that they’re usually ineffective. They also take a lot of time and effort to achieve the mediocre results that usually follow.
Home-made prevention can be useful curtailing the spread of an infestation, however, and it’s definitely recommended that you try to do so as you bring in professional pest control.
- One of the first things to do is find out which beds and sofas in your house have been infested, and wrap the legs of the ones that haven’t with double-sided tape, which will prevent the bed bugs from crawling up into new mattresses or sofas. You can also put the legs of your bed in into small containers of soapy water, or coat the legs with Vaseline. Always make sure that the sheets and pillows of these mattresses are kept away from the floor and walls.
- Next, wash and dry all your clothes, sheets, and pillows cases on high heat, which will kill the bed bugs, and store them in sealed plastic bags afterward to prevent re-infestation.
There are also some bed bug insecticides that help deter infestation. They usually dissolve or evaporate after a few days, so home-applied insecticides don’t catch all the bed bugs, which only come out to feed every week or so. Insecticides also don’t get the eggs unless they’re directly applied to them.
- Deltamethrin is the most common solution. It’s from a class of chemicals called pyrethins, so look for solutions that have active ingredients such as cyfluthrin, cypermethrin, and pyethrum. This chemical is a mild neurotoxin, but it’s safe for larger household pets and people. Deltamethrin is also odorless and leaves no visible residue.
- Hyrdopene is growth regulator, which won’t kill on contact but prevents growth and reproduction of bed bugs. This can help as a long term treatment. It can only be used indoors, and although it’s fairly safe, it should only be used selectively.
- Diatomeceous Earth comes in a dust or powder, which can be spread in infested areas to kill bed bugs that it comes into contact with, and doesn’t need to be replenished. Be careful that you get DE that is specifically marketed for bed bugs, because it’s also sold for swimming pool filters in a form that is much more dangerous to humans and pets.
Professional Alternatives – Handling Bed Bug Issues
Professional treatment is the best option, because a well chosen service will have the resources to tackle this issue with multiple forms of treatment. It’s important to check the credentials of your local services though. Make sure the services are fully licensed and they’ve been around for a long time. Also, make sure they specialize in bed bugs, and see how they operate. A good bed bug service will not just spray and leave, they’ll use multiple treatment methods to ensure effectiveness. They’ll also give you a written plan of their treatment, and inform you of how they need your participation. Make sure you feel right about your choice, and remember that quality services will be qualified on many factors, not just a low price.