Did you know that bed bugs have exploded all over the world, particularly in Australia? Read on to find out why and follow the best tips on how to get rid of bed bug infestations, both DIY and professionally.
What are Bed Bugs?
You have no doubt heard of the term ‘bed bugs’ but do you know what they are? Bed bugs refer to small parasitic insects that feed on your blood, piercing your skin. They hide in beds, biting you to feed on your blood.
They are red-brown and approximately the size of an apple seed, commonly found in homes, hostels, motels, and hospitals. Bites are generally itchy, red, and in a line.
Bed bugs are not known to spread diseases, however they are still pests of national health significance. Bed bugs are very hard to kill and modern bed bugs have a thicker cuticle, meaning they have stronger resistance to pest control insecticides.
Bed Bugs Populating Australia
Recent estimates put the population of bed bugs at a 5,000 per cent increase since 2000. Scientists have linked the increase to the reduction of harmful pesticides, the rise in international travel, and the second-hand furniture trade. Back in the 1950s, insecticides nearly eradicated them, but with the above factors they have made an unpopular comeback.
Eradicating Bed Bug Infestation
Consider our following tips for both prevention and treatment of bed bug infestation.
Practice Proper Hygiene
You would be amazed at just how many people don’t practice proper hygiene. This helps to spread bed bugs. Washing your hands regularly, along with properly washing your laundry (wash clothes and bedding in hot water) will greatly help to reduce their numbers. Bed bugs hide and lay eggs in a variety of household objects and materials that humans make close contact with, including mattresses and bed frames.
Be Mindful of Second-Hand Furniture
Although, we wouldn’t suggest you avoid second-hand furniture, we do suggest that you stay mindful. Second-hand furniture is known to attract bed bugs. These tiny critters are great hitchhikers. Often transferring themselves from a person’s clothing onto furniture. Not to mention, if a place is bed bug infested you can bet that its furniture contents will be as well.
Reduce their Hiding Spots
Do your part and reduce the number of hiding spots available to bed bugs. Some of these spots are cracks and crevices of walls, spaces behind skirting boards, and loose wallpaper. Bed bugs love to hide in these spaces, so it makes sense to eliminate them.
Vacuum Clean the Affected Area
Thoroughly vacuum the infested areas in your home, including your mattress and place the contents of the vacuum cleaner bag in a sealed plastic bag for disposal. Don’t forget to wash your hands afterwards.
In the past, pesticides were much stronger and considered unsafe to use.
These days they are generally considered less harmful than other pesticides on the market. They can be bought from your hardware store and are easy to use.
Contact Pest Control
It is advisable to contact a pest control company that is well established and has the proper expertise and experience in pest control. Make sure they specialise in the pest that needs eliminating on your property. If not, they can recommend you to the right place that does. Remember all pest control companies are different, and they don’t deal with all pests, even ones that may be prevalent in their zone.
If you believe you have a bed bug infestation at your home, contact our experts today at AGJ Pest Management. All our technicians are licensed by the Queensland Health Department.