Who doesn’t want to get bed bugs out of their home and keep them out? If you have recently undergone a costly bed bug treatment you know the hassle and headache of the entire process. It is no easy task and a significant hit to your wallet. Your number one goal afterward is preventing these pests from ever coming back.
Bed Bug Re-infestation After Treatment
Remember, after you treat your home for bed bugs, some pests may have survived. You should always discuss the likelihood of the infestation continuing post-treatment with your exterminator. If your exterminator suggests a second treatment, it is wise to accept his advice and successfully prevent re-infestation.
Pinpoint How the Bed Bug Infestation Occurred
Did you recently travel? Stay in a hotel? Visit a library? Check your coat? There are a multitude of ways that you could have brought bed bugs home. Trying to pinpoint how the bug infestation occurred might help you prevent a re-infestation. Did you pick up the bugs from a friend or family member’s home? You might have even brought them home from work. If you know where the primary infestation occurred, you can avoid re-infesting your house.
Remove All Signs of an Infestation
Once the exterminator is done treating your home for bed bugs, you should remove all signs of the original infestation, so it is easy to tell if you have become re-infested. This means cleaning up all dead bugs, blood stains, blood droppings, fecal matter, and eggs. Cleaning the area will help alert you to any new bug problems.
Ways to Prevent Bed Bug Re-infestation
- Caulk and Seal All Cracks: If you live in an apartment, duplex, or multiplex then your neighbors might be the culprit. The tiny creatures can enter your unit through cracks around HVAC vents, walls, plumbing, or other locations. It is imperative that you seal and caulk all cracks to cut off access to your apartment. Also, install door sweeps at the base of your doors to prevent bugs from entering.
- Avoid Secondhand Furniture: Yes, you can score a good deal on a couch or chair from a thrift store or secondhand seller, but you might also bring home bed bugs. Avoid or pretreat secondhand furniture to ensure it doesn’t re-infest your home.
- Launder All Your Items: Even if your home has been thoroughly treated for bed bugs you should still launder all your clothing, bedding and textiles in a high-temperature wash and dry to kill any eggs that the exterminator might have missed.
- Vacuum Daily: Daily vacuuming may pick up a stray bed bug or egg that was missed in the extermination process. Always thoroughly wipe down the vacuum afterward and dispose of its contents in an outdoor garbage receptacle that is far from your home.
- Use Traps: Set bed bug traps at the base of your bed to monitor if you still have a small infestation in your home.
- Stay Vigilant: You should always be looking for bed bugs, shed exoskeletons, bites, blood spots, and other signs of an existing bed bug infestation. Even the best exterminator might miss a bug or two so catching the insects before they have a chance to breed is the best way to gain control.
- Rid Your Home of Clutter: Declutter your home to eliminate potential bed bug hiding spots. Your home will be easier to clean, and it will be easier to see any bed bugs or signs that the insects are back.
- Buy New Beds and Box Springs: If your old bed and box spring can’t be saved, replacing them can help lower the chance of re-infestation. It will also make it easier to notice if there are any signs of a new colony emerging in your home or bedroom.
- Check Your Books: If you have a large bookcase, carefully check the binding, spin, and pages of each book for bed bugs. Many times, the treatment methods used to clear a home of bed bugs fail to reach deep within the crevices of a book. Luckily, there are at-home products that can help to prevent this.
- Electrical Appliances: Bed bugs can hide in your alarm clock, stereo, television, and electrical outlets. You should always look for signs of the bugs in these odd spots post-treatment. Usually, they will be eliminated by the exterminator but on rare occasions, a few might manage to hide well enough to survive. Again, there are at-home treatments you can try if you find leftover bugs in your electronics or even as a preventative measure.
Nobody wants to have to retreat their home for bed bugs. The process is costly, time-consuming, and difficult. Taking these simple measures can help you avoid it!