There is nothing worse than a bed bug infestation. Getting rid of bed bugs can feel like an Ebola scare. You’ll have to decontaminate your clothes, move sensitive items out of your house, pull all of your furniture away from the walls, take paintings down, and find a safe place to stay for a little while. If even one female bed bug lives, you could be doing it all over again in another six months. That’s why it is best to protect yourself from an infestation before it happens.

Here is the problem

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Bed bugs hitchhike. They can get in your clothing and luggage when you stay at a hotel, motel, or resort. They can hitch a ride home with you after a cruise on a ship. They can jump in your hood or pocket while you’re at the movie theater or traveling on public transit. Bed bugs are on the move, all the time, but especially when you’re traveling or out and about.

These bugs will not generally breach your walls on their own, unless you live in an apartment complex. This bug spreads by crawling into items that smell like the humans they love to feast on. That means clothing, luggage, laundry bags, hats, shoes, etc. This gives them ample opportunity to travel the world.

Here is the solution

If you stay alert and follow these practices at home and abroad, you can prevent many infestations from happening.

  • Always check before traveling. This will help you determine if the place you’re intending to stay has had a bed bug incident.
  • While staying anywhere, always check for bed bugs before you bring your bags in. Roll the bed down and search for seed-like brown bugs, blood stains on the sheets, or black fecal residue on the corners or seams of the mattress. Use a flashlight to check the backboard and other furniture in the room.
  • When you return home, wash and dry all your clothing on the hottest temperature. This will kill bed bugs, eggs, and larvae. This is also a good precaution to take when anyone comes to stay the night at your home.
  • If you have visitors, check their bedding after they leave.
  • Always check any used furniture you bring into the house, especially if you got it off the side of the road.
  • Make regular checks of all the sheets in the house. Those blood stains will be one of your first signs. Children will generally ignore the red welts left by bed bugs in the night. And many times adults shrug the bites off as mosquito or spider bites.

A little preventative checking will keep you and your family safe from bed bugs. If you already have an infestation, be sure to have a professional take care of it. Do-it-yourself methods can be dangerous and without proper knowledge and experience, you are not likely to eradicate this pest on your own.

Be safe and beware of bed bugs as you travel this holiday season, and contact Holder’s for more information on our bed bug control services.