Bed bugs are like something out of a nightmare. While you are soundly asleep, the nasty bugs creep out of their hiding places, crawl into your bed and suck your blood. When dawn arrives, they scurry back to their hiding place leaving you covered in red, itchy bumps. It’s understandable to feel upset when you discover you have an infestation but try to temper your reaction and avoid doing anything that will inadvertently make the situation worse.
Things NOT to Do When You Have Bed Bugs
Here is a list of the top things NOT to do when you discover that you have bed bugs. Some of them will be hard to avoid but just remember that bed bugs are treatable, and you are not alone.
Okay, easier said than done. Panic is a normal reaction and you are going to freak out. However, don’t let it overpower you. Instead, take some deep breathes, call a professional exterminator to get the lowdown, and start researching the solution.
Don't Move Things
You might be tempted to box up your belongings and move them to a safe place. However, moving things is a mistake and you will likely be boxing up bed bugs. No matter how careful you think you are, there could easily be one or two stowed away. Moving boxes even from one room to another will only spreads the bugs and make treatment even more difficult and widespread.
Do Not Throw Away Your Furniture
You might be tempted to load up your sofa, recliner, and mattresses and haul them off to the local landfill, but don’t financially burden yourself. Replacing your belongings will be a costly endeavor. You should be able to successfully treat your furnishing with sprays or other treatment options such as heat, steam cleaning, or vapor treatments.
Avoid Unsuitable Pesticides
If you suspect you have bed bugs you might not want to wait on an exterminator, or you may be tempted to cut corners and save a few pennies by purchasing outdoor pesticides or flea fumigation products. Neither are effective on bed bugs and using an outdoor product indoors is extremely dangerous. Instead, research sprays that are formulated specifically for use on bed bugs. There are sprays available that are safe to use in your home and will effectively kill the bugs if you follow the directions correctly.
Don’t Assume Bed Bugs Are Only in Your Bedroom
Based on their name, you might think that bed bugs are confined only to your bedroom, but this is not the case. Bed bugs are sneaky and will hide anywhere including your alarm clock, picture frame, stuffed animals, sofa and baseboards. The best approach is to treat the whole house to ensure you get any and all bugs.
Don’t Assume Your House is Dirty
Many people feel ashamed that they have bed bugs. They think that people will believe they are dirty or living in soiled conditions because of the bug’s presence but this is simply not true. Bed bugs do not care if your house is immaculate or messy, they only care if there is blood available. People from all socioeconomic situations have bed bugs and it doesn’t reflect poorly on you, your home, or your family.
Spending the Night
If you find out that you have bed bugs and you simply cannot stand the thought of spending the night in your bed, then head to a hotel or the home of a relative. But make sure you don’t bring the bugs with you. Launder your clothing and dry it on a hot setting then leave your house the moment you put your fresh clothing on. If you plan to take items with you, be sure to run them through the dryer and seal them in plastic bags.
Finding out you have bed bugs can be a nightmare but keeping a level head and avoiding these simple mistakes can keep a bad situation from getting worse.
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