Once they get in, they are hard to get rid of. Bed bugs are often the core fear of potential travelers to new and unknown destinations. Not only is the idea of sleeping in a bed bug infested hotel discomforting, but the idea of bringing unwanted visitors back home with you is outright terrifying!
Where did they come from?
A question that we get asked frequently is "where did the bed bugs come from? I'm a clean person!" It is a common misconception that bed bugs thrive only in messy environments. While it is certainly true that they benefit from cluttered floors that provide a wealth of hiding places, it is not a necessity for their survival. But the root of the question is "where did the bed bugs come from?" Two major sources of bed bugs are from staying in an infested hotel/home or from visitors staying in your home who come from an infested residence. In either case, bed bugs are carried into your home within infested clothing or luggage. A third source, although less common, is from infested second-hand furniture.
How do I avoid bed bugs when travelling?
The first step to a bed bug free trip is doing careful research into the hotel you are considering. Hotels are common transfer points of bed bugs because infected guests bring in new bed bug infestations on an on-going basis. Good hotels use a combination of excellent housekeeping services (laundry, vacuuming) and professional pest management to defend their hotel against bed bugs. A hotel that properly protects its hotel against bed bugs will have few or no complaints lodged against them. There are numerous review websites that can help you determine whether a hotel has had bed bug issues in the past. Simply perform a search using a combination of your hotel's name, review, and bed bug. Reading reviews will reveal the extent of any problems with a hotel, whether they are beg bug related or not. Hotels that have numerous bed bug related reviews, especially recently dated entries, should think twice about staying in that location. If you are unsure about the presence of bed bugs in your travel location, numerous products exist for sealing your luggage or clothing and preventing bed bug hitch hikers. Furthermore, luggage should never be left on the ground but should be left on elevated luggage racks.
How do I prevent bed bugs from entering my home?
The second step to preventing bed bugs from entering you home is to be able to identify a bed bug infestation and what to do if you suspect your luggage may be infested with bed bugs. One of the first things you can check for are fecal stains on headboards, sheets, and mattresses. These will appear as numerous dark stains, usually grouped together in close proximity. If you suspect that your luggage may be infested with bed bugs you should carefully inspect each item of clothing before packing. At the first possible chance (whether at home or in a laundry facility) you should immediately machine wash clothing items in HOT water with detergent and then dry on low heat for at least 20 minutes (more if possible). Do not forget to inspect and wash your luggage thoroughly.
If you suspect you have a bed bug problem, call Nimby Pest Management for a quick and affordable solution.