In the United States, bed bugs have staged quite a comeback in recent years. Their return is blamed on a rise in international travel, but you don't need to be a globetrotter to experience an infestation. The pest control experts at Termagon in Tucson, AZ, explain the many ways in which bed bugs gain entry into your home.
How Did I Get Bed Bugs?
Even if you don't consider yourself an international traveler, your household is vulnerable to the threat of bed bugs. These sneaky insects can invade your home in some pretty surprising ways. These include picking them up from someone else's home -- most likely an unknowing victim -- as well as from work, travel or an item brought into your house. In many of these situations, you or a family member innocently placed a belonging on an infested item. Bed bugs often hide out undetected on furniture, then hitch a ride in or on your things.
Common Bed Bug Vehicles
From the movie theater to your local thrift store, you never know where these bloodsuckers might be lurking. These everyday household items and other belongings make the perfect vehicles for bed bugs to hitch a ride home with you:
- Used furniture
- Items left on upholstered or soft surfaces
Inspecting these items before you put them down in your house can prevent a bed bug infestation.
How to Inspect for Bed Bugs
Inspect your bags when coming home from a trip or even after your everyday routine. Isolate these belongings so that any bed bugs that have crawled into your belongings won't spread throughout the house. These bugs are very small, so use a flashlight to inspect the nooks and crannies. Here's what to look for:
- 4 to 5 mm long
- Wing pads but no wings
- Brown color (turns reddish-brown after feeding)
- Flat, oval-shaped bodies (becomes rounder after eating)
If you find bed bugs, the ideal solution is to place the item in a sealed plastic bag inside a hot car. Freezing is also an option. The most important thing is to isolate the infested item from your house and the rest of your belongings.
If you suspect an infestation, schedule an inspection right away. A single pregnant bed bug can produce 300-plus adult bed bugs and 1000 new eggs in a three-month period. And since they're hard to spot, a bed bug population can quickly spread to furniture, carpet, upholstery and various crevices. Contact Termagon to schedule an inspection today.