Bed bugs are a true nightmare of home and hotel owners who’ve come into contact with them. These tiny insects are smaller than a pencil eraser, their flat bodies allow them to hide in tight crevices easily, they reproduce fast, and they’re extremely difficult to get rid of. And they bite! If you spot bed bugs in your house, don’t panic – they infested your property but there are ways that can help you eradicate them. If you don’t want to call a pest control specialist right away, you can try some do-it-yourself methods. Keep in mind that some of them may not be effective as a stand-alone strategy, or they may not be effective at all. The experts from Pest Control Las Vegas prepared a short list of strategies that can help you deal with bed bugs.
Here’s everything you need to know about home remedies to control bed bugs:
Wash your bedding
This DYI method won’t eradicate the problem completely, but it can help you reduce the number of bed bugs. As bed bugs are not so keen on high temperatures, heat can kill adults, nymphs, and eggs. To do it correctly, remove the bedding from your bed. Before you place it in a washing machine, put it in a black bin liner. Then, wash the bedding for at least 90 minutes at a high temperature (at least 140°F). Professionals also use heat to eradicate bed bugs, but if you want to manage the problem yourself, this method is a good way to start.
Another home remedy for bed bugs is freezing. Once again, this method is not 100% effective but it can help you significantly reduce the number of bed bugs. Just like heat, cold kills bed bugs quite efficiently. However, if you decide to freeze your bedding to get rid of these insects, you’ll need to keep in mind that this method is more time-consuming than washing. First, isolate the infested items and put them in your freezer – you can layer it with trash bags. Then, leave the items in the freezer for at least 4 days. Keep the temperature at or below 0°F. Nevertheless, remember that you’ll need additional methods to get rid of bed bugs completely.
Diatomaceous earth is made from fossilized remains of tiny algae (diatoms). Besides being an effective insecticide, it’s reported to also have several health benefits. So, what makes it so special? The key element is silica, the chemical compound from which the diatoms in diatomaceous earth are made of. If you want to get rid of bed bugs, apply a fine amount of diatomaceous earth along with the furniture, bed frames, and the seams of your mattress. When the silica comes in contact with bed bugs, it removes the waxy outer coating from their exoskeletons. As a result, the insects die from dehydration. However, this strategy is not 100% foolproof. To get the best results, you should combine the application of diatomaceous earth with other methods.
Unfortunately, a universal bug spray doesn’t exist. However, there are some products that you may consider using if you want to get rid of those pesky bed bugs. You can buy desiccant dust that includes silica aerogel or diatomaceous earth. What’s more, you could purchase a contact spray. Keep in mind that such sprays are not effective anymore once they dry out.
Make sure your products are considered to be of low toxicity. Don’t forget to take precautionary measures! Keep your skin covered whenever you’re using a spray. Also, avoid spraying when your children or pets are present. Read all the labels carefully and use the products in places indicated in the instructions. These products are, to some extent, toxic, so make sure you don’t put your health in danger.
Products to avoid
First off, you should avoid products that are declared illegal. They are banned for a reason – usually, they contain toxic compounds that can be harmful to the environment and living organisms. What’s more, some of the products don’t work but are mistakenly believed to be effective. It’s important to be able to distinguish which method actually works, and which one is just a myth. For example, “bug bombs”, or aerosol foggers, are often used extensively but they won’t help you get rid of the infestation. That’s because bed bugs avoid contact with such insecticides by hiding in crevices and voids, which foggers or sprays cannot penetrate.
The bottom line
There are some DYI methods that are quite efficient. Even though they won’t help you get rid of bed bugs completely, they can significantly reduce their numbers, especially if you apply them interchangeably. Nevertheless, if you want to eradicate bed bugs from your property safely and permanently, contact pest control professionals instead of deciding to apply ineffective or illegal methods.