How to Treat and Get Rid of a Bed Bug Infestation Safely

Get Rid of and Treat an Infestation of Bed Bugs: The Right Way

Like many insects and other small organisms, bed bugs—those blood-sucking parasites that plague the nightly repose of thousands of Americans, as well as many others throughout the world—have adapted well over time. Most organisms adapt to changing conditions, but creatures with shorter lifespans (such as the bed bug’s 11-month average, outside of laboratory conditions) tend to do so much more quickly than the rest of us. With methods of bed bug extermination focusing, more or less since time immemorial, on the elimination of any individual bed bugs encountered, it’s small wonder that their ongoing adaptive process has favored those with pesticide resistance and thicker skins.

These individuals have survived to pass on these traits to their offspring. And pass them on they have: some scientists regard the recent outbreak of bed bugs over the last three to four years as being the result of an evolutionary leap. Bed bug populations which have not been isolated from the overall gene pool show a resistance to common pesticides that is nearly 1,000 times more potent than that displayed by bed bugs from a few decades ago.

In some cases, today’s bed bugs—while no visibly different than those from centuries past—can scurry around quite comfortably in environments which are laced with substances that effectively neutralized their direct ancestors. Much as with the plague which swept through Europe repeatedly over the centuries, each subsequent sweep affected a much smaller portion of the population than the one before it. Today, the question of how to get rid of bed bugs has no simple or short-term answers.

How to Identify a Bed Bug Infestation:

Bed bugs are surprisingly stealthy. They aren’t very agile, and they can’t fly; they reproduce more quickly than other, larger animals, but they’re far from being the most fecund of insects. These nocturnal parasites’ only real ally is stealth and concealment. Here are a few ways to help identify a bed bug infestation in your home.

  • Check your mattress and sofa cushions for bed bugs. Bed bugs like to feed on sleeping individuals. Using a magnifying glass or zoomed-in cellphone or smartphone camera, inspect the seams along the edge of your mattress and sofa cushions. Bed bugs are tiny, and can easily hide in the narrow crevasses available in such locations. Bed bugs which have recently fed, such as within the last 24 hours, may have retreated to hiding places in the immediate vicinity.
  • Bed bugs do not fly. This is more of a common myth than a bug-hunting tip, but if you find an insect with wings, or which takes off into the air while being observed, it isn’t a bedbug.
  • Look for spots on your sheets or mattress. Any light-colored fabric will reveal the signs of a recent bed bug feeding under close inspection. Tiny black spots, about half the size of the head of a pin, represent bed bug waste. The insects will usually defecate where they’ve been feeding, leaving behind fecal matter which looks a lot what you might see from a quick poke with a gel-tip pen. Larger, redder stains will result from when an individual changes position in their sleep, crushing bed bugs in the process.
  • Waft your hand over any suspicious stains. Recent bed bug fecal deposits will smell faintly musty, like a rarely-used but crowded basement with poor air circulation.
  • Look for bed bug eggs, larvae (nymphs) and shed exoskeletons. Like other insects, bed bugs molt their skins. Because they swell up while feeding, molting usually occurs after they’ve fed. They will also lay their eggs close to where they’ve been feeding. Unlike individual bed bugs, which may either bunch together or scatter, larvae and eggs will often be grouped close together.
  • Molted skins are beige, brown or yellowish. Bed bug nymphs are yellow or yellowish-white, and the eggs are white. They’re each about 1-2mm in size, a little bit larger than the head of a pin, but can be seen through a camera’s zoom when clustered together.
  • Inspect other likely hiding places. Bed bugs neither like nor dislike filth, but they love cluttered and untidy spaces because they offer plenty of places for an insect the size of a pinhead to hide. Check your mattress and box spring, and seal up any holes in either thoroughly. Examine your bedframe, your carpet (including the underside, if possible) and any clutter in the area of your bed. Don’t forget the joins in the wood or metal of your bedframe, if there is any separation; the same applies to other furnishings in the room.
  • Examine light switches, electrical sockets, and electronics. Look for bed bugs hiding in nooks and crannies, and for signs of defecation, or discarded skins. Bed bugs have been known to hide within electrical sockets and light switches; if you suspected an infestation, unscrewing and removing a switch plate is a good way to find obvious signs.
  • Look for bug bites. Bed bugs feed in coordinated groups, and they favor parts of the body which are exposed, offer plenty of surface area and have veins conveniently close to the surface. Bed bug bites can be dangerous and will form irregular patterns of visibly round splotches that look a little bit like bruising. Bed bugs favor the feet, as these are most often exposed, as well as arms and legs, the back, and the neck and chin. That being said, they’ll feed on just about anywhere where they can find blood.

Professional Bed Bug Treatment: Pros and Cons

Bed Bugs are insidious but can be dealt with. Like doctors dealing with antibiotic-resistant bacteria, professional pest management companies have more than one trick up their sleeves. By most estimations, hiring a pest control professional is still the best way to go when it comes to dealing with bed bugs: most individual populations of bed bugs won’t share all of the same resistances as bed bug populations in a location hundreds of miles away.

Bed bugs do spread, and they like to accompany us when we travel, but an increasingly bug-conscious public has managed to effectively curtail this issue (at least for the time being). It’s a growing problem, but not at such a level as of yet to make it impossible to deal with. What it does mean, however, is that professional pest eliminators will often need to be called back to deal with bed bugs from the same population, until hitting on a treatment that works.

Pros of Hiring a Bed Bug Exterminator:

Professional pest management experts know how to treat bed bugs: if there are pesticides which are more (or less) effective on the local population, chances are strong that they’re aware of them. Additionally, they understand the behavior of bed bugs and have experience in tracking down their favorite hiding places. Bed bugs are small enough to conceal themselves almost anywhere; while your average homeowner will look for a place where “they might hide, if they were that small,” a pest control professional will look for any place offering the specific conditions which—from a bed bug’s perspective—amount to the perfect environment to stay hidden and expand a colony.

Professionals can also offer tips on how to prevent a bed bug infestation, in order to help curtail the possibility of a problem arising again in the future. There are many factors which add up to making sleeping individuals an easier target for bed bugs, often because homeowners will actually overestimate the little bloodsuckers’ mobility. Bed bugs have a surprisingly difficult time reaching their slumbering prey unless they’re lying on the floor.

Step one on any homeowner’s list of “how to prevent bed bug infestation” should be to make sure that there is a small gap between any furnishings and the adjacent wall. This will minimize convenient climbing opportunities. Provided there are no bed linens reaching to the floor, the bed bugs—which cannot fly, and aren’t built for jumping—will be forced to climb up to a sleeper by way of the bedframe itself.

Cons of Hiring a Bed Bug Exterminator:

For many people, the biggest drawback to hiring an exterminator is the expense. This is particularly true when exterminating the notoriously resilient bed bug. In confronting bed bug infestations, the pest management expert is usually successful in tracking down the majority of the insects’ hiding places, at which point there is the question of which tools to use to attempt to dispose of the unwanted interlopers.

The choice of pesticides for bed bugs is traditionally one of an assortment of neurotoxic chemicals. These substances attack the bed bugs’ nervous systems, killing them quickly and efficiently—assuming the population isn’t resistant to the poison chosen. With that assumption in hand, it is likely to require two to five visits from an exterminator in order to ascertain that all of the bed bugs have been eradicated. Even where there isn’t a specific resistance, bed bugs have become generally more resistant to a toxic residue, and must often be sprayed directly for the chemical to be effective.

This kind of commitment can wind up costing the average homeowner thousands of dollars, and the process only becomes more drawn-out if a callback is required (due to the first choice of chemicals having no effect). This is an increasingly common scenario.

If one can afford it, the professional exterminator is still the most heavily-advised route: the bed bug stymies over-the-counter remedies just as effectively, so the professional’s advantages over the average homeowner are still considerable. There is another problem, however: the issue of personal health risks.

The chemicals used by the pest control industry to help fight off bed bugs are extremely toxic. Many of them, including those which are still legal for use in the United States today, can cause serious illness and death in humans through accidental over-exposure. It is usually necessary to find someplace to stay while a bed bug treatment is being applied, and often for some time afterwards.

Even if all relevant safety procedures are followed, the effects of exposure to a recently sprayed area can have potentially severe consequences for the elderly and infirm, those with asthma or other existing breathing problems, allergy sufferers, small children, and family pets.

How to Prevent a Bed Bug Infestation:

Given the many problems that arise when getting rid of bed bugs, it’s definitely an advisable strategy to try and avoid infestation in the first place—but bed bugs are present throughout the world. Wherever you find people, you will find bed bugs. So, how do you prevent bed bug infestations, given that these little critters’ entire purpose in life is to feed on your blood in the middle of the night?

  • Keep your furniture in good repair. Attend to any loose joins in wooden furniture, particularly beds, chairs, sofas, and any other place where you or your family members spend a lot of time sleeping or otherwise at rest. Seal up any gaps, holes, or tears in mattresses, box springs, and sofa cushions.
  • Keep your furniture away from the walls. You don’t need to have a considerable gap between your furnishings and the walls. Bed bugs are flightless, and—unlike other flightless insects—are not built for jumping. They move mostly by crawling and climbing, at which they are modestly accomplished. If you keep your furniture an inch or two removed from the walls, you take away a handy avenue of access, forcing any bed bugs to ascend the furniture itself.
  • Use monitoring devices. If you live in an area which is prone to bed bug infestations, you might benefit from the use of monitoring devices. These are plastic cups, shaped to allow bed bugs to climb into them, whereupon the interior slope leaves them trapped inside. The items are built to support heavy furniture: put one underneath each leg of your bed, sofa, or other such furnishings. This help to prevent easy access by bed bugs, and doubles as an “early warning system” if an infestation does occur.
  • Avoid long bed and bath linens.  Don’t leave towels and clothes lying crumpled on the floor, or hanging in such a fashion as to be in contact with the floor. Don’t use bed sheets, blankets or quilts which reach all the way to the ground.
How to Treat Bed Bug Infestations Naturally with Bed Bug Bully

Many people prefer to avoid the expense and uncertainty of hiring pest control by dealing with bed bugs naturally. Bed Bug Bully uses diatomaceous earth (D.E. for short) to attack bed bugs in much the same way as salt dries out a snail: the tiny, fossilized phytoplankton inside the D.E. pierces the bed bugs’ thin outer skins, and dries out their internal organs.

Bed Bug Bully also incorporates the use of all-natural essential oils from plants which have evolved substances to naturally deter insect pests. Plants like thyme, lemongrass, peppermint and cedar are all popular choices for their essential oils. They smell pleasant to people but are powerful deterrents to small insects, and some of them are potentially lethal.

All-natural sprays incorporating essential oils as an active ingredient are also available for combating bed bugs. These require direct application to kill a bed bug, but may offer a deterring power which—thanks to their non-toxic and pleasantly scented composition—can be sprayed throughout an infested residence. Read and follow all packaging and label directions thoroughly.

With Bed Bug Bully, it spreads into forces bed bugs to go into “fight or flight” mode, making them eat themselves and each other. This means that they kill each other for you, treating the infestation.

The leftover residue leaves a “shield” for the treated area, preventing future infestations.

And best of all, Bed Bug Bully is 100% safe and natural.  Click below to purchase Bed Bug Bully.

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Natural Bed Bug Remedies

All-Natural Remedies to Get Rid of Your Bed Bug Problem

Home remedies to kill bed bugs are gaining in popularity with the widely-publicized ineffectiveness of traditional pesticides. Many of these pesticides are potent neurotoxins, which can cause people already suffering from respiratory ailments to become seriously ill after contact with their long-term residue. An ever-increasing campaign for widespread awareness of sustainable living practices has resulted in much less dangerous methods of pest control becoming far more common in today’s modern household.

The Problems with Pesticides:

Pesticides are, quite literally, the only substances that we deliberately release into our homes, backyards, and food supplies, with the intention of killing other living things. As brilliant as many of their formulas are, it is impossible to create a “magic bullet” pesticide which completely lacks side effects in living organisms that aren’t its intended target (such as people). To compensate, people who are having their homes treated with pesticide will often be directed to vacate the premises for the duration of the treatment, as well as for a certain amount of time thereafter.

Unfortunately, traces of pesticide which linger long after the return date can potentially cause severe health problems in those who are especially vulnerable. This includes family pets, newborns (and, to a lesser extent, all babies), the elderly, the infirm, and individuals with existing illnesses (such as respiratory conditions, or autoimmune disorders).

Coupled with the fact that a dramatically more resilient bed bug population has reduced pesticide effectiveness to levels which are frequently surpassed by safe, all-natural alternatives, this information has many people looking to take the natural route to getting rid of bed bugs.

Bed Bug Immunity:

Bed bugs have been around for as long as we have a written history. Some of the earliest “documents” present in museums around the world actually discuss pest control, as well as commercial transactions relating to its compensation. It wasn’t until the modern era that people discovered a range of chemical agents so toxic as to be successful at wiping out bed bugs wholesale, even through residual effect alone. This is ultimately what was responsible for the virtual elimination of bed bugs as a routine problem in most of America in the mid-twentieth century.

Unfortunately, those few bed bugs which survived the application of neurotoxic chemicals were those with natural immunity to their effects. With time, and repeated application, plus the bed bugs’ tendency to travel with human hosts in their clothing and luggage, this led to a resurgence in bed bug populations within America’s major cities. Over the last decade, bed bugs in New York and Chicago have demonstrated wide-ranging immunity to common exterminator pesticides. Bed bugs in these locations were more likely to thrive, and thus more likely to spread. They are now becoming common in other major cities, as well as in rural parts of North America.

Poisonous Pesticides:

Most common pesticides are neurotoxins. These are substances which attack the nervous system, a system which all vertebrate life depends upon to survive. The human body has natural defenses to protect its nervous systems, which is usually enough to keep it safe from short-term harm (such as a neurotoxic substance doled out in amounts meant to kill bugs the size of a pinhead). If a person’s defenses are compromised or are otherwise occupied, that’s a different story. Many neurotoxins have a cascading effect, meaning that—if the body’s defenses don’t take care of them—they can affect significant amounts of tissue relative to their volume.

How to Kill Bed Bugs Naturally: The Safe and Effective Remedies:

There are several safe, all-natural ways to deal with bed bugs which, provided a person is thorough and attentive and does their homework, have repeatedly proven to be extremely effective in naturally getting rid of bed bug infestations. Some of these are substances which were widely used to eliminate insect pests in ancient times, while the properties of others have only been discovered fairly recently. As you can see, bed bugs are extremely small, and hard to take out. Through these safe alternatives, you should get rid of bed bugs in no time!

Historical Home Remedies:

Bed bugs have been a plague on human society since ancient times, ever since they first evolved in the Middle East thousands of years ago. At that time, they were an offshoot of an existing, well-established species of parasitic insect which fed on bats. With bats and people often occupying the same caves, for the same reasons, those insects which developed the ability to feed on humans as well gained a distinct “survival of the fittest” advantage over their brethren. Humans migrate, which meant that—over time—these unwanted stowaways began feeding on human blood exclusively.

A variety of tricks and tools have been employed by people throughout history in an effort to ward off bed bugs. Some of these are dubious in their effectiveness, and profoundly unsafe—such as the soaking of bedclothes in flammable petroleum products. Other methods are still used today, however. In a world where traditional pesticides are simply refining the highly adaptive bed bug into a more resistant parasite, holistic and other alternative therapies are gaining a considerable following: they’re affordable, effective, and—most importantly—safe to use around people, pets, and other large organisms.

Get Rid of Bed Bugs Naturally

Essential Oils: Nature’s Bug-Killers:

Essential oils are usually extracted from plants. They were used in ancient alchemy preparations for centuries, as early aspiring scientists tried to uncover the secret to eternal life. Over the years, their use in this fashion declined, but their pleasant and lingering scents continued to make them popular in the perfume industry. Later, alternative medical disciplines such as homoeopathy would resurrect their use.

Essential oils have many die-hard advocates and vocal detractors to this day, but all of this ignores the fundamental truth about them: the scents that we enjoy so much are the results of chemical compounds which evolved over millions of years to target insects and other pests. Bed bugs do not feed on plants, but they share fundamental biological qualities with most insects. With the decline in effectiveness of other forms of bed bug treatment, many popular home remedies to get rid of bed bugs now take advantage of essential oils—and there is real science to back up their effects.

All-Natural Sprays:

One of the ways in which essential oils are most commonly put to use against bed bugs is through the use of sprays designed to get rid of bed bugs naturally and safely. It’s worth noting that even certain sprays which make use of modern pesticides often include essential oils as well; this is due to their proven effectiveness in treating bed bug infestations. There are also sprays which use a variety of essential oils as their primary ingredient.

Like other pesticides, all-natural and otherwise, an essential oil spray must often be applied directly to a bed bug in order to kill it. However, there are studies published by Rutgers university which suggest that some of these sprays are up to 100% effective at killing bed bugs when this is done. The overall process can be painstaking, and it’s often time-consuming, with several successive applications often being required to ensure the complete elimination of a colony. However, this method offers several advantages over traditional pesticides and professional pest management services.

  • Bio-pesticides and other all-natural remedies are affordable. Essential oils are not expensive; it’s even possible to mix up a homemade bed bug spray from the comfort of your own kitchen, with nothing that goes into the spray causing a problem for food exposure. This allows for the use of these sprays in large quantities, which leads directly to the next point on this list.
  • All-natural essential oils are safe for human consumption. Many of these substances are extracted from plants which are commonly used as flavorings in food and modern medicine, the latter being particularly common in children’s medication. You can use as much of these sprays as you need to, without having to worry about toxic effects, and without worrying about relocating your family during its application.
  • Essential oils lack many of the unpleasant qualities of toxic pesticides. A traditional pesticide lingers, creating an unpleasant (and usually poisonous) miasma. It’s effective at killing some pests, but its long-term residue isn’t all that spectacular for your small children or household pets. Pesticides also stain most surfaces, and smell terrible. Essential oils are pleasantly scented, and are not overpowering with their fragrance.
  • Pesticides kill, but essential oils also repel. This isn’t an argument for bed bug rights; killing requires direct contact. Repulsion, on the other hand, can drive bed bugs out of an area. With traditional pesticides, this is undesirable: the colony will relocate to another part of your home, and you’ll have to start the process all over again. With all-natural sprays, you can spray throughout your home, and get rid of bed bug infestations as safely and naturally as possible.

There is a long list of popular essential oils which are available for personal use, as well as being included in a wide variety of commercial sprays. These include the oils of cinnamon, lemongrass, peppermint, clove, tea tree, eucalyptus, thyme, and lavender. You can choose your preferred fragrances; all of these oils come from plants with highly-evolved defenses against insect pests.

Diatomaceous Earth: A Natural Remedy to Getting Rid of Bed Bugs

Diatomaceous earth, also known as “diatomite” or “D.E.,” is an extremely soft sedimentary rock. Like many forms of sedimentary rock, it consists primarily of fossils: fossilized phytoplankton, ancient single-celled plants and animals which still float in the oceans today. Diatomaceous earth can be found in what were once ancient sea beds, and can be readily crumpled into a fine powder. It is quite porous, and has been used for centuries as medicine by people all over the world.

The ancient Egyptians, Assyrians and Babylonians used D.E. to combat insect pests, possibly include bed bugs, thousands of years ago. The way diatomite works is simple: you grind it up into a fine powder, then sprinkle it across the threshold (or around the legs of furniture) in an area where you wish to keep bed bugs and other diminutive pests at bay. This is widely believed to be the origin of the story about sprinkling salt in a protective circle to ward off evil, as salt was sometimes used by wealthy individuals to achieve the same ends.

To the touch, diatomaceous earth feels slightly abrasive but is mostly a fine powder. For a creature like a bed bug—many thousands of times smaller than a person, with a body that’s thinner than our skin—D.E. presents an entirely different prospect. The material will pierce and shred the softer parts of their skin, and dry out their soft internal organs, particularly their proportionately large digestive system. D.E. affects bed bugs in much the same fashion as that in which a liberal sprinkling of salt will cause a slug to shrivel up.

Diatomaceous earth can be used to stop bed bugs from crossing a doorway, or to prevent them from ascending up the legs of a bed, sofa, or other items of furniture in a location with a bed bug infestation. Bed bugs that try to cross a diatomite barrier will suffer the full effects of exposure to the material.

Bed Bug Bully: A Natural Home Remedy to Get Rid of Bed Bugs:

Diatomaceous earth is an excellent basis for a natural remedy for bed bugs. It’s completely harmless; in fact, while its nutritional benefits are controversial, finely-ground food-grade D.E. exists which has been deemed safe for human consumption by the FDA. It’s completely non-toxic; were it not sharp enough at the microscopic level to pierce bed bugs’ bodies, it wouldn’t even harm them.

Bed Bug Bully is a unique bed bug extermination product that’s safe and all-natural. It works very simply: its primary active ingredient is diatomite. It affects bed bugs in the same fashion as normal D.E. would. In addition to the diatomaceous earth, there are several essential oils included in the recipe. These include lavender, clove, and cedar oil among others.

The oils add to the lethality of the D.E. and add a repellant quality which D.E. lacks by itself. The formula is bound together by food-grade binders, which are commonly employed by the food and drug industries to hold ingredients together as intended. Everything in Bed Bug Bully is safe, all-natural, and environmentally friendly. It is the only product on today’s market which combines diatomaceous earth with the bed bug-repelling power of potent essential oils.

With Bed Bug Bully, you can naturally get rid of bed bugs more quickly and efficiently than by using any of its component ingredients on their own—all without posing a risk to small children and pets, the most frequent victims of pesticide poisoning in American homes today.

Get Rid of Bed Bugs Naturally

The Quick Guide on How Bed Bugs Survive

Bed bugs are small – on average no larger than ¼ of an inch or 6 millimeters for the students of the metric system. However, what they lack in individual size they can more than make up for in group volume. The National Pest Management Association – a non-profit trade association founded in 1933 to represent the interests of the professional pest management industry in the United States – recently conducted a survey with the University of Kentucky and found that bed bugs exist in every United States State with 1 out of 5 Americans reporting experience an infestation in their home or knows someone who has encountered bed bugs in their office, hotel, or home.

How Do Bed Bugs Survive?

So how do these small parasites escape detection and destruction? Here are some of the traits and strengths of this little pest that help them in their mission of taking over your home or office.

  • They are smarter than they look. They hide during the day and come out to bite their hosts at night.
  • They are the ninjas of the bug world. When a bed bug bites their host, they inject an anaesthetic agent so that the host cannot feel the bite or the loss of blood.
  • They are resistant to a range of temperatures. Bed bugs can survive freezing temperatures and over 120 degrees Fahrenheit (50 degrees Celsius).
  • They are resistant to many pesticides. Although chemically strong pesticides such as DDT nearly eliminated bed bugs in the 1950s, the harmful effects of those pesticides were just as effective in humans and pets as they were in bed bugs! Therefore, it is advised that – when treating bed bugs in homes, especially homes with small children and pets – a naturally formulated pesticide be used as opposed to chemically based pesticides. See here for recommended natural ingredients based pesticides designed by Bed Bug Bully.
  • Finally, they are fast at reproduction. Bed bugs can lay up to 5 eggs a day and over 500 eggs in the lifetime of a single bug. This means bed bugs enjoy a near exponential growth potential as soon as they find a mate in your home.

What Can You Do?

Do not fret; there are steps you can take to not only eliminate this pesky little pest from forming an infestation in your home but also prevent them from coming back in the future.

  • Take a deep breath, remain calm, and then take immediate action. While early identification of bed bugs is key; once you find traces of their existence in your bed/home or bite marks on your skin, take immediate but effective steps to eliminate potential harm from bites and a potential in your home.
  • Wash your clothes and linens in the highest temperature setting. Bed bugs enjoy moist and warm environments that are near the temperature of the human body. You must first ensure that places where you tend to sleep and rest are free from them before making more thorough inspections to identify and eliminate bed bugs. In order to be thorough, check both your mattress as well as box spring to ensure that bugs have not penetrated the exteriors and are hiding inside.
  • Inspect your room including recently used travel materials. Bed bugs normally enter a home or office place on commonly used travel items such as luggage, backpacks, coats, or even shoes. Ensure that whichever method the bed bugs used to travel inside your home is free from any pest presence.
  • Eliminate or evacuate the bugs. Now that you have removed the bed bugs you have spotted and cleaned the potential hiding and resting places around the house, consider performing another thorough walkthrough with a friend to ensure that there are no stragglers behind. They are tricky creatures with a penchant for finding hiding places in any crevice or gap within a house or office.
  • Call the professionals. If you notice signs of bed bug bites on your skin or bugs in any area of your home following these steps. At this point, you want to either call a professional pest management service or purchase a DIY kit such as Bed Bug Bully to take firmer actions against your uninvited houseguests.

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