How To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs At Home Fast
Everything You Need to Know to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Before you panic, read up on how the pests really operate.
The resurgence of bed bugs in American homes has caused many a sleepless night — but not everything you hear is true.
Before you start pointing fingers at the reasons your home is infested or why you do — or don’t — have a bed bugs problem, know this: Entomologist Richard Pollack, Ph.D., has found fewer than 10% of the critters people identify as bed bugs actuallyarebed bugs. That’s also why he doesn’t trust websites that list reports of bed bugs at hotels.
If you suspect you’ve got some unwelcome visitors at your house, here is everything you need to know about these nasty insects first.
Where do bed bugs come from?
Bed bugs most notoriously hitch rides on luggage, but traveling isn’t the only way to pick them up. They can easily be carried into the house on secondhand furniture, clothing, boxes, and pillows, so inspect such itemsverycarefully. Encasement products like Good Housekeeping Seal holder AllerEase mattress protector can also prevent bugs that do make it inside from hunkering down in crevices.
But while reports of bed bugs at movie theaters and in retail stores have made headlines, it’s rare that someone actually brings them home, says Jody Gangloff-Kaufmann, an urban entomologist at Cornell University.
What are bed bugs attracted to?
Whether you have a messy home or a neat home, bed bugs only care that their food source, a.k.a. people, are nearby. Luckily, there’s no evidence they transmit diseases as they feed. The real threat: itchy, red bites, which are the first sign of an infestation.
Can bed bugs bite through clothes?
Unfortunately, long-sleeved pajamas won’t shield you from bed bug bites. In fact, that’s one of the tell-tale signs of an infestation. "If you wake up with numerous bites, especially under your clothes, it could be bed bugs," says David Dunham of Go Green Bedbug Dogs. Not everyone experiences the same skin reaction though. "It’s common for one person to become the host or the person getting all the bites, while their spouse or partner will get no bites at all," he adds. "Usually the person not getting bites will discredit their partner’s concerns.
Now, here’s how to get rid of bed bugs:
The first step is searching your furnishings, particularly along and behind the headboard and sides of the mattress. Bed bugs will hole up in furniture, along baseboards, in cracks in walls and, yes, in beds. Look for black stains (they leave behind blood and fecal matter), discarded molted skins, and the bugs themselves, but don’t wait too long to contact a professional.
"The biggest mistake people make is waiting too long to call for help, because the longer the problem goes on, the bigger of a chance they’ll spread within the home and even outside of the home," Dunham says.
Send or bring evidence to your local Cooperative Extension office (usually $5) or contact an online bug-ID service such as Pollack’s IdentifyUS ($30) for a diagnosis. Accuracy is very important, so pinpoint the areas and rooms in your home that need treatment and act swiftly.
As soon as you determine you have bed bugs, seal the infested bedding and clothing in clean plastic bags. Sort items based on how you would wash clothes and make a separate dry-clean only pile, advises the University of Minnesota Department of Entomology. Then wash and dry the items at the hottest temperature they can withstand.
While some bugs will die in the washing machine, it’s the heat of the dryer that will kill more of them. At least 60 minutes on a high-heat setting should do the trick, according to New York State Integrated Pest Management. Immediately dispose of the used plastic bags and put clean clothes in new ones. Don’t take the items out of the bag until the infestation is successfully controlled.
Thoroughly vacuuming rugs, floors, furniture, beds, and all cracks and crevices can also cut down on your bed bug population, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Afterwards, put the contaminated vacuum bag in a tightly sealed bag and throw it away in an outside garbage bin.
While some people think over-the-counter sprays are a solution, pyrethroid-based pesticides may kill or repel some of the insects, but can be dangerous if misused, and it’s doubtful you’ll be successful on your own. Instead, get written quotes from three licensed exterminators detailing their course of action, including pesticides, traps, and/or heat treatments they’ll use and how and where they’ll use them. "You should ask lots of questions to the companies you interview, because a good company will answer them and will never pressure you to make an appointment," says Dunham.
Asking the company about their success rate and if their treatment comes with a guarantee, should their efforts not be successful, is a must. Good luck!
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Bedbugs are small, oval, brownish insects that live on the blood of animals or humans. Adult bedbugs have flat bodies about the size of an apple seed. After feeding, however, their bodies swell and are a reddish color.
Bedbugs do not fly, but they can move quickly over floors, walls, and ceilings. Female bedbugs may lay hundreds of eggs, each of which is about the size of a speck of dust, over a lifetime.
Immature bedbugs, called nymphs, shed their skins five times before reaching maturity and require a meal of blood before each shedding. Under favorable conditions the bugs can develop fully in as little as a month and produce three or more generations per year.
Although they are a nuisance, they are not thought to transmit diseases.
Where Bed Bugs Hide
Bedbugs may enter your home undetected through luggage, clothing, used beds and couches, and other items. Their flattened bodies make it possible for them to fit into tiny spaces, about the width of a credit card. Bedbugs do not have nests like ants or bees, but tend to live in groups in hiding places. Their initial hiding places are typically in mattresses, box springs, bed frames, and headboards where they have easy access to people to bite in the night.
Over time, however, they may scatter through the bedroom, moving into any crevice or protected location. They may also spread to nearby rooms or apartments.
Because bedbugs live solely on blood, having them in your home is not a sign of dirtiness. You are as likely to find them in immaculate homes and hotel rooms as in filthy ones.
When Bedbugs Bite
Bedbugs are active mainly at night and usually bite people while they are sleeping. They feed by piercing the skin and withdrawing blood through an elongated beak. The bugs feed from three to 10 minutes to become engorged and then crawl away unnoticed.
Most bedbug bites are painless at first, but later turn into itchy welts. Unlike flea bites that are mainly around the ankles, bedbug bites are on any area of skin exposed while sleeping. Also, the bites do not have a red spot in the center like flea bites do.
People who don’t realize they have a bedbug infestation may attribute the itching and welts to other causes, such as mosquitoes. To confirm bedbug bites, you must find and identify the bugs themselves.
Signs of Infestation
If you wake up with itchy areas you didn’t have when you went to sleep, you may have bedbugs, particularly if you got a used bed or other used furniture around the time the bites started. Other signs that you have bedbugs include:
- Blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases
- Dark or rusty spots of bedbug excrement on sheets and mattresses, bed clothes, and walls
- Bedbug fecal spots, egg shells, or shed skins in areas where bedbugs hide
- An offensive, musty odor from the bugs’ scent glands
If you suspect an infestation, remove all bedding and check it carefully for signs of the bugs or their excrement. Remove the dust cover over the bottom of the box springs and examine the seams in the wood framing. Peel back the fabric where it is stapled to the wood frame.
Also, check the area around the bed, including inside books, telephones or radios, the edge of the carpet, and even in electrical outlets. Check your closet, because bedbugs can attach to clothing. If you are uncertain about signs of bedbugs, call an exterminator, who will know what to look for.
If you find signs of infestation, begin steps to get rid of the bugs and prevent their return.
Getting rid of bedbugs begins with cleaning up the places where bedbugs live. This should include the following:
- Clean bedding, linens, curtains, and clothing in hot water and dry them on the highest dryer setting. Place stuffed animals, shoes, and other items that can’t be washed in the dryer and run on high for 30 minutes.
- Use a stiff brush to scrub mattress seams to remove bedbugs and their eggs before vacuuming.
- Vacuum your bed and surrounding area frequently. After vacuuming, immediately place the vacuum cleaner bag in a plastic bag and place in garbage can outdoors.
- Encase mattress and box springs with a tightly woven, zippered cover to keep bedbugs from entering or escaping. Bedbugs may live up to a year without feeding, so keep the cover on your mattress for at least a year to make sure all bugs in the mattress are dead.
- Repair cracks in plaster and glue down peeling wallpaper to get rid of places bedbugs can hide.
- Get rid of clutter around the bed.
If your mattress is infested, you may want to get rid of it and get a new one, but take care to rid the rest of your home of bedbugs or they will infest your new mattress.
While cleaning up infested areas will be helpful in controlling bedbugs, getting rid of them usually requires chemical treatments. Because treating your bed and bedroom with insecticides can be harmful, it is important to use products that can be used safely in bedrooms. Do not treat mattresses and bedding unless the label specifically says you can use them on bedding.
Generally it is safest and most effective to hire an experienced pest control professional for bedbug extermination.
University of Kentucky College of Agriculture: "Bed Bugs."
Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet: "Bed Bugs."
The New York City Department of Heath and Mental Hygiene: "Stop Bed Bugs Safely."
University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension Lancaster County: "Managing Bed Bugs."
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Fast – 8 Home Remedies That Work
Are you having bed bugs infestation at home or maybe bed bugs have even started biting you and sucking your blood? No problem, in this article I’m going to tell you effective home remedies on how to get rid of bed bugs fast and permanently. And will youSay Bye Bugs!
To begin with …So what are bed bugs?
Bed bugs are flat, small and wingless insects that mostly feed on blood.
You can find them in homes and you can easilytransport them to different places through luggage, clothing, and furniture.
These tiny insects hide easily from view during the day when they are not active.
Their preferred habitat is usually our homes.
They hide in mattresses, bed frames and bedding, furniture, carpets, clothing and other household furniture.
Bed bugs are parasites that operate very efficiently in the dark and when seen close up, they may appear in different colors.
A large population of bedbugs may produce a coriander-like odor (1).
Characteristics of Bed Bugs
The following are characteristics of bed bugs
As stated earlier on, bed bugs are nocturnal,which means they are most active during the night.
They feed on your blood when you are sleeping comfortably in your bed at night.
Understand that bed bugs infest all kinds of furniture within your home. Cribs, sofas, and beds included.
Bed bugs may be hiding at themovie theatre, hospital waiting room, on the train or the bus, even at your own workplace.
In short, they are almost everywhere, even maybe they are on your seat right now ..lol
Most bedbugs feed on their hosts while they sleep and draw blood in a painless way.
They feed on their hosts by injecting a small amount of saliva into the host’s skin.
An individual becomes sensitive to theirsaliva and chemicalsafter weeks of feeding and may eventually develop an allergic reaction.
Some allergic reactionsmay prove fatal if you don’t give them proper medical attention.
However, this situation may bevery unlikely.
Usually, most people that bed bugs bite don’t show any symptoms and often have no idea about the bites.
This makes it more difficult to prevent or identify potential infestations that may pose a threat to one’s health.
However, some may becomeill and nauseous.
Also, you can contact scars and skin infections from scratching the bites from bed bugs(2).
Hard to See and Kill
It is almost difficult for the normal human eye to see bed bugs.
Bed bugs are able to withstand and recover quickly from a difficult condition which includes temperature.
Without the right tools, these vicious tiny creatures can survive for many years within your furniture or bed.
In fact, these pests are able to stay alive for up to 1 year without feeding.
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What are the Main Causes of Bed Bugs?
Note that there is no association with bed bugs and filth.
Why did I say that? … It is because
These tiny creatures donot care if one is clean or dirty.
Even vacant and occupied clean homes may have bedbugs in them.
They can survive for over two months without any food since they are adaptable to different conditions.
The riskof having bed bug infestation increases each time you invite people into your home.
Also, they hide in your luggage and can stick to your clothing when you go topublic or common places.
A careful visual inspection should allow a person to detect bedbugs or their droppings.
How to Get Rid Of Bed Bugs Fast at Home
This section will show you how to get rid of bed bugs.
However, there is a certain thing you must do before carrying out the major operations.
First of all:
Identify the Infested Areas
The first step you need to take is to find bed bugs infested areas in your home(3).
Be sure to double check your bedroom or anywhere in the home where people sleep and keep pets.
Take a closer look at the spaces between the mattresses, cushions and other possible hiding places.
Do not leave other furnishings and electrical appliances out.
In addition,inspect your surroundings because bed bugs can be hiding everywhere.
All these are important to determine the extent of the infestation.
After efficiently marking out the infested areas,you can go ahead to get rid bugs.
So What Kills Bed Bugs Home?
The following are safe, effective and legal methods will put you through.
1. Use a Vacuum Cleaner for Bed Bug
Vacuum cleaning involves the use of an electrical apparatus to collect dust from the floors and other surfaces.
You can use the vacuum cleaner to suck up and eradicate bedbugs from your bedroom.
Use a Vacuum Cleaner for Bed Bug
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Follow thesteps below to ensure that you completely do away with the bugs.
- Concentrate on the infested areas
- Avoid pressing hard against your bed cover of fabric to prevent the bed bugs from moving away from the surface.
- Remove the vacuum bag and seal it properly. A tape will suffice.
- Place the vacuum bag into a plastic container.
- Seal it and dispose of it in the trash.
If your vacuum cleaner does not have a bag, empty it and dispose of away in a sealed plastic bag.
Vacuum cleaners do not necessarily kill bedbugs.
However,they greatly reduce the armies of bedbugs in your home.
2. Freezing Bed Bug
You can get rid of bed bugs using freezing conditions.
This method is particularly useful in killing bedbugs in smaller items.
Freezing makes ice to form inside the bedbug which causes injury or death to them.
Although,bed bugs can live for a long period before they finally die.
Vacuum Cleaner for Bed Bug
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However, you should take certain precautions when freezing household materials.
Household items that you can freeze include cloth items, shoes, pieces of jewelry and toys.
Do not freeze electronics with LCD screens or panels.
The temperature of your freezer is quite important because bed bugs die quickly under very low temperature.
Place infested items in a freezer that is at or below 0 o F (-18 o C) and leave it for at least 4-6 days.
Ensure that you do not set your freezer above 0 o F as the eggs and little bed bugs may survive.
3. High Heat Bed Bugs Treatment
Another way on how to get rid of bed bugs is the use of high heat.
This method is applicable if you cannot see all of the bugs or all of their eggs.
It will discover the bugs and kill them irrespective of their hiding place.
You will need to get aheater and have it installed in your home.
You need to heat your home up to 140 o F for about two hours.
This kind of treatment will kill the majority of the begs and their eggs as they cannot survive such high heat for a long time
However, you need to take certain precautions.
Ensure that you follow the precautions listed below.
- Do not stay at home during this treatment.
- Staying in a place with high heat can pose health hazards.
- Make sure your home is suitable for the treatment.
- Get a professional to double check your walls and windows to prevent the heat from escaping the building.
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4. Hot Steam for Bed Bug Treatment
Hot steam is a very effective method on how to get rid of bed bugs once you apply it correctly.
It kills bed bugs in their different stages of development without posing a threat to the environment.
The steam can find its waythrough tiny cracks or spaces on household furniture.
It also eradicates bed bugs infestations inside mattresses.
A steam cleaner is very necessary for this method.
Although steam cleaners are quite expensive, it is possible to rent one.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs With Hot Seam
To get rid of bed bugs fast, follow the steps below carefully.
- Mark out the infested areas.
- Thoroughly vacuum all the areas you plan to steam.
- Apply the steamer on all surfaces of the infested area or where you think the bed bugs may be hiding.
- Ensure that the fabric you are applying the steam on is not wet.
- Just in the case the fabric is wet, reduce the amount of steam generated by the steamer.
- Turn on or use a fan in the infested area. This will ensure proper circulation of air to dry the area of materials you have steamed.
- Repeat these steps until you are almost sure that the bed bugs are dead or eradicated.
- Note that bed bugs that do not come in contact with the steam will survive.
But first a warning:
Take the following precautions before and while steaming for your safety.
- Make sure that you always read and understand the directions in the manual that came with the steamer.
- The steam produced from a steamer is very high so, do not let children near the steamer.
- In addition, always direct the steam away from yourself.
5. How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs with Baking Soda
Baking soda is an effective home remedy for bed bug. It helps eliminate moisture from the body of bed bugs due to its drying properties.
It loaded with antimicrobial properties which kills bed bugs.
Just sprinkle some baking soda around the crevices and cracks or wherever you find bugs.
Vacuum the baking soda after few days and you can repeat the process again.
6. Tea Tree Oil for Bed Bug
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This is one of the best essential oils with high antimicrobial effects.
In fact,the antibacterial properties help you kill any unwanted microbes like bacteria, viruses, and fungi (4).
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs With Tea Tree Oil
- Add some tea tree oil drops on the infested area.
- Prepare a solution with warm water and tea tree oil.
- Put the diluted solution of tea tree in a spray bottle and spray it on the walls, furniture, carpets, clothes linens, beds, drapes, cupboards, and mattresses
- Do this once a week to kill the bed bug
7. Lavender homemade Bed Bug Killer
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Use lavender essential oil, soap or powder to treat bed bugs.
You can also put lavender leaves on the infested area to keep bed bugs away.
This is one of the effective homemade bed bug killers that nauseates them.
8. Bed Bug Spray
Using bug sprays and other chemicals can help get rid of bed bugs. Bug sprays are quite effective.
These chemicals kill the bugs on contact.
Bug sprays are easily affordable but one may need to purchase multiple bottles for effective treatment.
Bug spray can prevent further infestation when applied correctly but you may need to search for bed bugs in hidden places.
Make sure you read and understand the instructions of the bug spray before application.
Ensure that you keep the infestation from expanding even after applying any of the methods(5).
Bed bugs like to hide in inaccessible locations, so they produce more eggs and multiply.
Continue checking for the presence of bed bugs, at least every 1 week, just in case any eggs remained or you missed a spot.
In addition,ensure that you seal anything you remove from your home properly in a plastic bag and also dispose of it properly.
Do not discardusable furniture if you can eliminate the bed bugs from it.
If you cannot completely get rid of bed bugs from a particular, discard it responsibly.
Also, you should place interceptors under the legs of the furniture in your home to catch bed bugs and prevent them from climbing.
Now, are you ready to get rid of bed bugs permanently at home? Try one of these home remedies on how to get rid of bed bugs at home, give us feedback the comment box below.
The Top 10 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Naturally
If you notice that you have small itchy spots, red rashes or blisters when you wake up, it could be a sign that you have bed bugs. These tiny little pests can infest the seams of your mattress, bed frames, box springs, and headboards. It can be a challenge to get rid of bed bugs because they are hard to detect and they multiply rapidly. Bed bugs should be destroyed as quickly as possible because they can infest other areas of your home and cause a major problem.
Actually, bed bugs are not a sign that you have a dirty home, but they can be brought into your house through luggage, used furniture and beds, clothing and other household items.
Fortunately, there are many ways to naturally get rid of bed bugs. Bed bugs can’t survive extreme hot or cold temperatures, so, methods like steam cleaning, hot washes, and drying on a high heat are natural home remedies to eliminate bed bugs from clothing and bedding. Placing small items in the freezer is another way to kill bed bugs.
For larger areas, you can make your own natural bed bug sprays from tea tree oil, lavender oil, or eradicate bed bugs by sprinkling diatomaceous earth powder in crevices that bed bugs like to inhabit.
Before we look at the best home remedies to eliminate bed bugs naturally, let’s look at the symptoms of bed bugs and the problems these tiny insects can cause.
The Problems Bed Bugs Cause
Adult bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed and gorge on the blood of humans and animals. Although bed bugs don’t spread disease or cause infections, they cause a lot of personal discomfort.
Bedbugs can also quickly infest beds, couches, furniture and are difficult to find and kill because they like to hide in dark cracks, crevices, and gaps.
Dr. Carol DerSarkissian onWebMDsays that bed bugs reach adult maturity within a month and can produce 3 or 4 generations a year. 1
According to theNational Pest Management Association(NPMA), the problem of getting rid of bed bugs and bed bug control is growing every year. A survey carried by the NPMA found there is a resurgence of bed bug infestations in hotels, movie theaters, public transportation, and even medical facilities. 2
Signs and Symptoms of Bed Bugs
There is no doubt about it – bed bugs are a nuisance and exterminating these tiny pests should be a top priority. One of the first symptoms that you may have a bed bug infestation is bites on your skin. These bites can appear anywhere on your body that the bed bug can crawl to. According to theNational Health Servicein the United Kingdom, some of the other symptoms of bed bug bites are: 3
- itchy red bumps on the skin
- a red itchy bed bug rash
- fluid-filled blisters or welts
- a skin infection caused by scratching the itchy skin and allowing bacteria to enter the wound
There will also be some signs around your bed that indicate you need to think about some effective methods of bed bug control. For example, with a flashlight, you may discover the tiny bugs in seams around the edge of the mattress or in the bed joints or spring box. You may also notice dark or red spots on your bedding or mattress. This is their dried feces or blood from a killed bed bug.
What are the best ways of getting rid of bed bugs from your bed, mattress, headboard, couches, or anywhere else that they might be living? Here are some of the best tried and tested bed bug natural remedies.
If you have bed bug bites, make sure to read my article about the best natural ways to get rid of bed bug bites.
Here are some of the best home remedies to get rid of bed bugs:
10 Best Natural Home Remedies to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Find the bed bug Infestation
One of the first steps to completely eliminate all traces of bed bugs from your home is to find all the infested areas. Bed bugs are usually found in bedrooms but they can inhabit any room in the home where people and pets sleep.
TheUS Environmental Protection Agencyrecommends carefully checking the seams of mattresses and other soft furnishings in your home. Examine the spaces between cushions, your mattress and bed frame and any other possible hiding place in your bedroom. Don’t forget to check drawer joints, behind loose wallpaper, and even in electrical appliances. 4
Any space the thickness of a credit card is a potential home for bed bugs.
Use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of bed bug naturally
Using a vacuum cleaner to suck up the bed bugs is a very effective and simple method to eradicate bed bugs from your bedroom.
A vacuum cleaner is a common household item so you can use it right now to kill bed bugs. To make sure and get rid of any eggs around the seams of your mattress, use a stiff brush to loosen any bed bug eggs from the material.
Bed bugs can be hiding everywhere, so you’ll need to vacuum all chairs and other soft furnishings, carpets, box springs, and mattresses and even curtains.
Regarding bed bug control, the journalClinical Microbiology Reviewssays that vacuuming can quickly get rid of a large number of bed bugs and their eggs. When using a vacuum cleaner to control bed bug infestations, it’s essential to use a disposable bag. As soon as you have vacuumed the infested area, remove and seal the bag before disposing of it. 5
Freeze items to kill bed bugs
Kill bed bugs in smaller items by placing them in a freezer. Although bed bugs can’t withstand freezing temperatures, they can live for up to a year in a cool room without any food sources.
To naturally kill the bedbugs you need to place infested items in a freezer that has a temperature below 1°F (-17°C) for at least 2 hours. 5
Hot steam kills bed bug
Hot steam is a great home remedy to destroy bed bugs and their eggs without damaging the environment.
The hot steam method for bed bug eradication can get rid of bed bugs from small crevices and cracks. The steam can also penetrate through the mattress lining and eradicate bug infestations inside the mattress.
Scientists have found that bed bugs are quickly killed when exposed to temperatures above 140°F (60°C). 5
So, if you have a steam cleaner, you can use it to exterminate bed bugs quickly without using harmful chemicals.
To kill bed bugs fast on your own using steam do the following:
- Thoroughly vacuum all the areas you plan to steam.
- Use the steamer on all surfaces where you see bed bugs and areas where you think bed bugs may be hiding to completely get rid of them.
- After using the steamer, the fabric may be damp, but it should not be wet. If the fabric is too wet decrease the amount of steam produced by the steamer.
- After you are finished, use a fan in the area to circulate air to help dry the items you have steamed.
- Repeat the steaming procedure a couple of times until all the bed bugs are completely gone.
You need to be aware that steaming will only kill bed bugs that are exposed to the heat, so any bed bugs that do not come into contact with the steam will survive.
What is the best type of steamer for bed bug eradication?
The general recommendation is to use a powerful and heavy duty steamer with a large water tank, preferably with a steam volume control. Small steamers may not be effective in eliminating bedbugs. Small steamers require constant refilling and may cover less surface area so they can be less effective in eliminating bed bugs. They may also not get hot enough to eliminate bedbugs on and around the mattress.
Hot wash bedding and clothing
You can also get rid of bed bugs from infected clothing and other fabric items by placing them in the washing machine and wash them at a temperature of over 60°C.
Hot washing is probably one of the easiest and fastest natural ways to kill off bed bugs from clothing and other items using a common household item.
Use a hot dryer
After putting infested items of clothing or bed linen through a hot wash, you should dry the items in a dryer set to a hot setting. This will make doubly sure that the bed linen is sterilized from bed bugs.
Dr. Carol DerSarkissian onWebMDrecommends the hot wash and hot dryer method to de-infest fabric items like curtains, bedding, shoes, and stuffed toy animals from bed bugs. 1
You could also use a hair dryer together with your vacuum cleaner to drive bed bugs out of crevices. Set the hair dryer to the hottest setting and direct into the crack. The hot air will kill the bed bugs and also force them out. Any bug not killed by the hair dryer can be sucked up with the vacuum cleaner.
Encase mattresses and pillows
Another natural way to prevent bed bugs from biting you during the night and stop them infesting other parts of your home is to encase mattresses and pillows.
Encasements for mattresses, spring boxes, and pillows are tightly woven covers that prevent bed bugs from entering or escaping. The encasements should be kept on for at least a year to ensure that all the bed bugs die naturally.
TheNational Pesticide Information Centerrecommends using encasements to protect your bed from bed bug infestations. In addition to encasing your bed items, they also recommend placing bed bug traps (such as this one) under your bed legs to stop bed bugs crawling up. 6
Other Natural Home Remedies to Eradicate Bed Bugs
While the above home remedies are excellent ways to eliminate bed bugs from your home, it is also necessary to treat areas with natural insecticides to kill bed bugs and eggs in hard to reach places. Here are some natural insecticides that you can make yourself to get rid of bed bugs.
Tea tree oil bed bug spray
The insecticidal properties of tea tree oil make it a great natural treatment to get rid of bed bug infestation. You can use the homemade tea tree spray to kill off bed bugs in hard to reach places, like cracks, crevices, and furniture joints.
A study from 2014 found that a tea tree oil solution is an effective and natural insect repellent and also acts as an insecticide. 7
To make a natural insecticide with tea tree oil, put 20 drops of tea tree oil in a spray bottle filled with water and shake well. Spray liberal amounts of the natural insecticide in all areas where you think bed bugs are living. Use the tea tree oil bed bug spray daily until all the signs of bed bugs have disappeared completely. Remember to shake the natural spray well before each application.
Tea tree oil is also a great natural remedy to cure any skin itching caused by bed bugs.
Lavender oil pesticide spray
Similar to tea tree oil, lavender essential oil can be used to make an effective natural DIY pesticide spray to kill bed bugs.
The insect-repellent properties of lavender oil are toxic for bed bugs but completely safe to use around the home.
One study into the effect of essential oils and their use for insect and bug control found that a combination of lavender oil and peppermint oil effectively kills off insects. 8 Lavender oil also helps to destroy insect eggs and larvae as well as repelling bed bugs. Peppermint oil also has a strong repellent action. 8
To make a natural bed bug spray, add 10-15 drops lavender essential oil and 10-15 drops peppermint oil to a spray bottle filled with water. Use the natural spray to treat areas infested with bed bugs. Use the natural pesticide spray daily until you no longer have any signs of bed bug infestation. Shake well before each application.
There are many other effective sprays to eliminate these nasty critters – read about them in my article about the best bed bug sprays to kill bed bugs fast.
Diatomaceous earth (DE) for bed bug control
Diatomaceous earth powder helps to kill off bed bugs by causing them to dehydrate because it destroys their outer protective membrane. Some people also call it bed bug powder. Because vacuum cleaners may not remove all bed bugs in deep crevices, diatomaceous earth powder is an excellent way to control bed bugs and prevent further infestation.
A study into the use of diatomaceous earth in bed bug eradication found that it is a safe, non-toxic way to rid your home of bed bugs. Even though diatomaceous earth (DE) is slow acting, the study found that this was an advantage. This is because the bed bugs transfer the powder to other bugs and help to distribute the natural insecticide to their habitats. The study found that within 4 days, 80% of all the bed bugs had been killed. Complete eradication was achieved in 12 days. 5
To naturally eliminate a bed bug infestation with diatomaceous earth, dust the bed bug powder around all areas where bed bugs may be hiding. Repeat the process every 3 days for 2 weeks to ensure complete removal of all the bed bugs.
Make sure to usefood gradediatomaceous earth (here is one example), as it is safe to use around the home and it’s an effective home treatment for killing bed bugs and fleas.
Home Remedies for Killing Bed Bugs – Commonly Asked Questions
Can baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) kill bed bugs?
Some people suggest that baking soda is an effective natural bed bug killer as it can dehydrate them or possibly even poison these tiny little pests.
However there is no indication showing that baking soda can eliminate bed bugs. In fact, baking soda doesn’t absorb much fluids so it will not dehydrate the bed bugs.
Baking soda actually breaks down in water quite easily, so its ability to absorb thick, viscous fluids like the wax on a bed bug’s shell is questionable. In addition, bed bugs don’t eat dry items in their environment such as sodium bicarbonate so it cannot poison them.
Can salt eliminate a bed bug infestation?
Salt has been used for decades to kill pests, such as slugs and snails by absorbing fluids from their body and causing them to dehydrate.
Some people believe that salt can eliminate bed bugs in the same way it kills slugs and snails. However there is a very strong anecdotal reference that this doesn’t work.
Does boric acid kill bed bugs?
Boric acid, can be used as a natural pesticide to kill roaches, eliminate ants, and eradicate termites but it needs to be ingested by the pest. Bed bugs have piercing and sucking mouth parts, and they do not ingest material other than blood from living hosts. Hence, there’s no way to get boric acid into the bed bugs’ stomach to kill them.
Does vitamin B1 (Thiamine) repel bed bugs?
Thiamin has been reported to be a mosquito repellent but there is no strong scientific evidence to support the fact that vitamin B1 helps in repelling bed bugs.
What is the best way to kill bed bugs naturally?
The best way to completely eliminate bed bugs for good is to use the following methods together:
- Vacuum all areas where bed bugs can be found.
- After vacuuming, use hot steam to naturally kill the remaining bed bugs instantly.
- Hot wash infected clothing and all fabric items.
- Use hot dryer for items that cannot be washed.
- Encase mattresses and pillows to prevent bed bugs from biting you.
- Use natural remedies such as diatomaceous earth and tea tree oil to exterminate bed bugs in hard to reach places.
How to Prevent Bed Bug Infestations
The best way to make sure that you never have any bed bug bites is to prevent bed bugs from infesting your home in the first place. Here are some top bed bug prevention tips:
- If you notice blood spots or dark marks on your bedding, immediately check all areas of your bed, mattress, and bedding for bed bugs.
- After returning from vacation, thoroughly vacuum your luggage.
- When staying in hotel rooms, take a flashlight with you to inspect the bed frame and mattress for tell-tale signs of bed bugs.
- Before bringing in second-hand furniture, beds, or mattresses to your home, thoroughly examine the items to make sure there are no bugs hiding in corners, joints, and seams.
- If you notice any bed bugs, eliminate them using theseeffective bed bug spraysto get rid of them for good.
Read my other related articles:
13 Responses toThe Top 10 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Naturally
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How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Fast, Naturally, Permanently, for Good, Yourself, Home Remedies
Can you get rid of bed bugs? Discover the best ways to get rid of bed bugs fast, naturally and permanently. Get insight into how you can get rid of bed bugs yourself. Also, learn what to use to get rid of bed bugs including chemical, non-chemical and home remedies. Read on to learn much more about getting rid of bed bugs in clothes, carpet and furniture cheaply on your own.
What is the Best Way to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Bed bugsare worldwide awful pests that feed on human blood. They are small nocturnal flat insects. Their flat body enables them to hide is small cracks and openings such as furniture joints and fabric seams. Furthermore, bed bugs multiply really rapidly, all the more reason why they may be difficult to get rid of.
A bed bug is a flat shaped nocturnal insect
Arguably, use of pesticides was once a common way of eliminating bed bugs. Sadly, the bed bugs have of late evolved and developed resistance to most of the very pesticides which were once widely used to kill them. Nowadays, you have to use a number of procedures together, usually, one after another, to completely get rid of bed bugs.
Additionally, you have to make a follow-up and possibly carry out further elimination of the bed bugs to permanently get rid of them. In case this is not done, the few bed bugs that certainly survive might quickly multiply and the house infestation will revert to the previous status soon.
In order to easily and effectively get rid of bed bugs, you should eliminate them before the infestation becomes severe. Accordingly, endeavor to get rid of bed bugs as soon as you notice thesigns of bed bugs. Also, carefully check some time later to confirm that you have actually exterminated them from your house.
Many people prefer the use of non-chemical means to get rid of bed bugs. Actually, the use of nonchemical methods eliminates the risk of exposure to dangerous substances. However, the use of non-chemical procedures alone may not be adequate to eliminate bed bugs completely. In practice, chemical procedures are used in conjunction with non-chemical procedures to permanently get rid of bed bugs.
How to get Rid of Bed Bugs – Treatment & Home Remedies
Getting rid of bed bugs usually involves the use of non-chemical procedures like vacuum cleaning, steam treatment, hot water cleaning and the dryer method. Other non-chemical methods include physical destruction and encasement of mattress and spring boxes. Generally, none-chemical methods are very effective in eliminating most of the bed bugs.
The use of chemical methods like pesticides, aerosols and dust is also common. It is often applied after most of the bed bugs have been destroyed by non-chemical methods to eliminate the few that might be remaining.
Before you start getting rid of bed bugs, make sure that you are conversant with thehiding places for bed bugs. This way, you will ensure to carry out the elimination procedure in all places. However, if you leave even a small part infested with bed bugs, you will be doing zero work. Certainly, the bed bugs will back soon after rapid multiplication of the few that survive. So, the bottom line is to firstfind the bed bugs and bed bug eggswithin your house.
1. Scrubbing and Wiping to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Typically, this is the first step of getting rid of bed bugs, especially when the infestation is severe. Dismantle the bedding to expose the bed bugs. Reduce the clutter around the infected room to further prepare for the removal of bed bugs.
However be careful not to move the infested items from room to room or to other buildings. If you do this, you will end up spreading the bed bugs to other rooms or buildings that are not infested.
Check the mattresses, furniture joints and all the other areas in the room. If that are areas that are heavily infested by the bed bugs, wipe and scrub them with a hard brush. You can kill others using a piece of stick or any other object. This will significantly reduce the bed bugs before using other methods.
2. Wash Fabrics with Hot Water
Wash your clothes, bed sheets and other fabrics with hot water. A temperature of 50°C (122°F) is adequate to kill all the bed bugs that may be in these fabrics. However, note that items like mattresses and carpets may not be washed this way. So, you may need to use steam treatment, vacuum cleaner or a dryer instead of washing with hot water.
3. Use a Dryer to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Place the clothes and other the items that you suspect have bed bugs in a dryer on high heat. The bed bugs will die. Usually, items which may not be washed such as shoes can be treated with heat in a dryer to get rid of bed bugs. Ensure that the heat in the dryer is adequate to kill the bed bugs.
4. Air Items infested with Bed bugs in Sunlight
Apparently, bed bugs do not like being subjected to light. Hence airing the fabrics carpets furniture and such items in the sunlight ay help scare the bed bugs away. However, this method should be used with other methods because it might not be very effective as to eradicate the bed bugs. Typically, you should air the items after treating them with steam, or hot water.
5. Use of Vacuum Cleaner to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Vacuum cleaning is also an effective and common method of getting rid of bed bugs. You need to have a vacuum cleaner to use this method. In case you do not have it, you can purchase or even hire one.
Use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of bed bugs
You can use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of bed bugs on mattresses, walls, and furniture. A vacuum cleaner is effective, especially in flashing and trapping the bed bugs from cracks, crevices on furniture, walls, floor and ceiling. Equally, it is excellent and practical in trapping bed bugs from some items such as mattresses and carpets, which you may not wash.
Vacuum cleaning a popular method since it does not use chemicals and hence there is no risk of exposure to chemicals. Furthermore, it is an appropriate method to get rid of bed bugs especially on mattresses, since it does not wet the items being cleaned.
However, note that a vacuum cleaner does not kill the bed bugs. Instead, it sucks and traps them into the vacuum cleaner. Therefore, make sure that the vacuum cleaner is not just left in the room after use.
One way of killing and removing the bed bugs in the vacuum cleaner is to subject it to hot air of about 50°C (122°F). Alternatively, encase the vacuum cleaner to restrict the bed bugs trapped in it until they die. However, note that a bed bug can survive without food for up to 400 days! [See the pagehow long can a bed bug survive without food?] Cleary, encasing the vacuum cleaner may not be very practical, especially if you hired it.
6. Use of Steam Treatment to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Steam treatment is a no-chemical method of getting rid of bed bugs. It is a can be use instead of a vacuum cleaner or together with it. It involves subjecting the infested areas to steam to kill the bed bugs.
Steam treatment stands out when it comes to eliminating bed bugs that have infested the mattresses. Besides killing the bed bugs on the mattress, it penetrates the mattress and kills the bed bugs hiding within the mattress. Apparently, a vacuum cleaner may not be able to tap the bed bugs within the mattress. As you apply the steam on the mattress, pay special attention to areas like seams and edges. Normally, this is where the bed bugs like hiding most or even laying eggs.
Another common area that you might not be able to clean directly is the furniture joints. In case there are crevices between the joints, they can be excellent places the bed bugs will enjoy to hide in. So, carefully apply the steam to the bed and any other piece of furniture near the bed or in the room. You need to pay more attention to the joints and corners and ensure that the steam reaches all the suspected areas on the pieces of furniture.
Bed bugs may also move a bit further from the bed to the cracks and crevices on the walls, floors and ceiling boards if they find the places better hiding places. Therefore, also apply the steam to any cracks or any tiny spaces on the walls, the floor or ceiling within the room.
In brief, the sure way of ascertaining that you have killed all the bed bugs and bed bug eggs in the room is to apply the steam to every suspicious pace.
7. Use of Pesticides to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Use of pesticides is a chemical method of getting rid of bed bugs. There are many pesticides that can be used to kill bed bugs. They are usually available asbed bug sprays and powders(aerosols and dust). You should not use any other substance that is not indicated for use in eliminating bed bugs. Such substances may be effective for this purpose. Worse still they may be harmful to your health.
Furthermore, you should be very careful when using pesticides avoid exposure. Ensure that you are in a protective gear to avoid inhaling harmful chemicals. Generally, use of pesticides is not preferred because of the risk of exposure. It even becomes more challenging because the pesticides are supposed to be used on beds and bedding. This increases chances of exposure given considering that you are supposed to use them after the treatment.
Generally, aerosols are easier to apply, especially into cracks and crevices, as compared to dust. On the other hand, powders/dust are faster as they kill instantly if applied directly on the bed bugs. Some of the pesticides aerosols and dust recommended for extermination of in your house bed bug include
- Cimexa Dust
- Optimate CS
- Bedlam Plus Aerosol
- Temprid SC
- Transport Mikron
- Steri-Fab Bed Bug Spray
- Alpine PT Aerosol
- Phantom Aerosol
- Temprid Ready Spray Aerosol
Most of the pesticides are effective only when they come into contact with the bed bugs themselves. Therefore, apply carefully apply the aerosol or dust to every part that you suspect could be hiding places for the bed bugs. Remember that in case you leave out just a small hiding area, you risk having the bed bug infestation recurrence
Apply the pesticide on your mattress. Turn the mattress around and apply the pesticide. Do not forget to pay special attention to the mattress seams and folds.
Apply the pesticide on your bed, the bed legs, corners and the crevices in the bed joints. Also, apply the pesticide to all the pieces of furniture in the room, especially the ones close to the bed. Concentrate on the drawers and dark corners on the in pieces of the furniture.
Also, apply the pesticide on the walls, floors and ceiling, concentrating on the cracks and crevices that may be on these surfaces. Carpets and floor boards should not be left out.
Another area that are hot hiding places that you may forget include picture frames, door frames and window frames. Similarly, remember electrical faceplates, wall fixtures and lamp holders.
8. Use of Encasements to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Typically, mattress and spring box encasement are used after eliminating bed bugs using steam treatment, vacuum cleaner or pesticides. The encasement traps and restricts the few remaining bed bugs within the mattress. As a result, the bed bugs die out of starvation.
However, you need to keep the encasement intact for quite a while, specifically about 400 days. This is because bed bugs can survive without food for that long.
Furthermore, use a quality encasement to ensure that the bed bugs do not sneak from the mattress. If this happens, they will multiply and soon heavily infest the house. Typically, use a quality zippered encasement to be sure of the effectiveness of this way of eliminating bed bugs.
Encasements can also the used on items other than the mattress and spring box. For example, you can decide to encase the vacuum cleaner after use to restrict and kill the bed bugs trapped in it.
9. Get Rid of Bed Bugs by Bed Bug Extermination
You can also utilize the services of a bed bug exterminator. A bed bug exterminator is an expert who will employ some of the methods explained above to get rid of bed bugs in your house.
Normally, the exterminator will visit you once or more times later to check the effectiveness of the work. During the visit, the exterminator may carry out further bed bug treatment to completely get rid of the bed bugs.
Bed bug exterminators are usually thorough in their job. They will carry out the extermination process professionally. Therefore, the results will certainly be satisfactory.
The cost of bed bug extermination depends on how expansive severe the infestation is. Contact an exterminator to get the details about bed bug extermination.
10. Use Other Methods and Home Remedies to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
There are other home remedies which can be used to get rid of bed bugs. Apparently, these remedies may not be very effective in eliminating all the bed bugs. However, they can be used to get rid of bed bugs if the infestation is mild. Usually, they are applied for relatively a longer time to give desirable results. They include the use of the following non-herbal and herbal procedures.
- Diatomaceous Earth
- Baking Soda
- Cayenne Pepper
- Double Sided Tape
- Cold treatment
- Bed Bug Traps
- Sweet Flag
- Bean Leaves
- Indian Lilac
- Tea Tree Oil
- Essential Oils
- Mint Leaves
- Black Walnut Tea
- Beauveria Bassiana
For details on how to use these and other home remedies to get rid of bed bugs, visit the pageHome Remedies for Bed Bugs.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Naturally
There are many natural methods of getting rid of bed bugs. They include scrubbing and use of home remedies such as tea tree oil and lavender oil. However, getting rid of bed bugs naturally may not be the fasted and most effective ways of eliminating bed bugs. Nevertheless, natural methods may be effective, especially if the bed bug infestation is not severe.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bags Fast or Quickly
If you want to get rid of bed bugs fast, use the dryer method, steam treatment, vacuum cleaner and pesticides. Methods such as encasement of items and most of the home remedies may not be used to get rid of bed bugs quickly. Encasement, for example, would take up to 400 days to eliminate the bed bugs!
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Yourself/on Your Own
You can get rid of bed bugs on your own using most of the methods we have discussed. However, you need to be careful about using the machines or chemicals that may be involved. Therefore, read and understand all the instructions for using these machines and chemicals. This way, you will avoid accidents or exposure to the chemicals. If there is anything you are not sure of, kindly find out from experts before carrying out the procedure.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs in Clothes
The best and cheap way to get rid of bed bugs in clothes is to wash them in hot water at about 50°C (122°F). Hang the clothes in the sun as bed bugs do not like light. However, in case you don’t want to wash your clothes, put them in a dryer on high heat. Let them stay in the dryer for about 30 minutes. All the bed bugs in the clothes will die due to the heat in the dryer
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs in a Mattress/Bedding
Arguably, the item which is most infested by bed bugs is the mattress. This is because the mattress is adjacent to you while you are asleep. Furthermore, it has seams and folds and forms many dark corners when fitted in the bed. Therefore, the bed bugs find it the most convenient area to hide and easily attack you for blood when you are asleep.
To get rid ofbed bugs on mattress, start by scrubbing most of the bed bugs off the mattress with a hard brush. In the next step, use a vacuum cleaner to trap more of the bed bugs in the cleaner. Now use apply steam into the mattress to kill the bed bugs that might have been hiding in the mattress. Lastly, enclose your mattress in a good mattress encasement and leave it intact for at least one year.
However, if the mattress is too severely infested, discard it and acquire a new one. However, clean the house and exterminate all the bed bugs before you start using the new mattress. This way you will prevent infestation of the mattress with the bed bugs again.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs on Your Body or Hair
Normally, bed bugs do not stay on human body or hair. However, when the infestation is very severe, a few may infest your clothes and hair, especially if it is long and thick. The best way to get rid of the bed bugs on your body or clothes you are wearing is to hand pick those you can see.
To get rid of those in the hair, wash it with bearable hot water and comb it hair vigorously. This way, you will to kill and flash the bed bugs from your hair. However, be careful not to use too hot water and burn yourself
How to Get Rid Of Bed Bugs Cheap/Cheaply
The cheap methods of getting rid of bed bugs include home remedies such as scrubbing and subjecting the bed bugs to hot water. You can also get rid of bed bugs cheaply by using of pesticides, which are not very expensive.
These methods are cheap because they involve easy procedure which you can carry out yourself. Besides, they utilize locally available material or cheap chemicals. Therefore, you will not require the services of exterminators or expensive devices like dryers and steam machines.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Permanently/for Good
Apparently, bed bugs may be very stubborn to get rid of. Many people have reported recurrences of bed bugs. Some even believe it is impossible to permanently get rid of bed bugs. However, it is possible to clear bed bugs from your house permanently
The best way to get rid of bed bugs for good is to use effective methods that have proven to work. More importantly, apply a series of procedures to supplement methods that may not be very effective in one area but are effective in another area.
Inspect and further treat your house and any other areas you had treated after 7-10 days. Keep inspecting after every one week to ensure that you have eliminated the bed bugs permanently. In case you notice them coming back, carry out further cleaning and treatment. Certainly, you will eventually succeed.
After getting rid of the bed bugs permanently, carry out preventive measures to stop them from infesting your house again. Visit the pageHow to Prevent Bed Bugsto get details on how you can prevent bed bug infestation.