While buying a new home is an exciting venture, it can also prove nerve-wracking in so many ways. Knowing what to check for and consider when purchasing a home is important. Along with a standard home inspection that checks for sinking foundations, termite activity, mold and moisture issues, and other adverse conditions, potential home buyers might also want to hire a professional pest control company to inspect their home before buying, particularly if you have noticed any signs of pest activity, such as roaches and/or bed bugs.
Do Bed Bugs Pose Health Threats to Humans?
In the past, unsanitary conditions were blamed as the reason bed bug infestations occurred, when in fact, bed bug infestations occurred where people slept. Bed bugs don’t pose any direct health threats to humans. However, bed bugs can cause sleep deprivation that leads to anxiety disorders, allergic reactions, and secondary infections caused by scratching the itching bites.
What’s the Deal with Bed Bugs Today?
Over the past few decades, bed bugs, thought to be nearly extinct, made a sudden comeback due to several factors, including:
- Restrictions on the chemicals used to control bed bugs, in addition to resistance to pyrethroid insecticides.
- With increasing tolerance to pyrethroids leading to control failures, containing and eradicating bed bugs is more difficult than before.
- More global travel creates more opportunities for bed bugs to hitchhike into any place humans sleep.
Why are Bed Bugs Attracted to Humans?
- Bed bugs survive on one food source: human blood.
- Attracted to the CO2 exhaled by humans, bed bugs come out from their daytime hiding places, under mattresses, in headboards, and in draperies to feed on human blood.
- Biting humans on the neck and shoulders, bed bugs inject an anesthetic that numbs the skin, along with an anticoagulant that stops the bleeding from the bite.
- Humans may not notice any sign of bed bugs until itchy welts appear at the bite sights
The Best Bed Bug Control
In South Florida, new homeowners want to find the best bed bug control methods for their needs. New homeowners should also check out their prospective homes for signs of past bed bug activity or a current infestation.
Check for Bed Bug Activity
There are a few things potential homeowners can look for to check for bed bug activity; however, it’s still a good idea to hire a professional pest control company, such as Petri Pest Control Services, to inspect the home you are considering purchasing. Things to look for include:
- Dark red or brown stains on mattresses and bed sheets
- Miniscule, 1/32-inch eggs that appear pale yellow
- Tiny dark spots that indicate bed bug excrement
- Tiny blood stains on mattresses, headboards, and bedding
- Live bed bugs
Hire a Professional to Inspect your New Home
If you’re still deciding or your new home is under contract, the best bed bug control companies will offer you a free bed bug inspection or refund their fee if you hire them to eliminate your bed bug problem.
Maybe you suspect you have bed bugs after you move in. Because bed bugs are experts at hitchhiking on clothes, furniture, and on electronics, bed bugs can come from anywhere, at any time. Still, hiring a pest control professional to conduct a bed bug inspection will save you money, misery, and time in the long run. The best bed bug control operators will thoroughly inspect the infested areas of your home, walk you through any prep you should do before your treatment, and answer all your questions.
What Should You Expect During a Bed Bug Inspection?
The best bed bug control operators will check the following:
- Under mattresses for tiny and black spots
- Upholstered furniture for dark spots in seams and folds
- Headboards and bedding for red spots
- Draperies for dark spots
- Behind artwork for dark spots and egg casings
Things to Do if Your Technician Confirms a Bed Bug Infestation
- Don’t panic and throw away everything in your bedroom—moving bed bug-infested items may compound your bed bug issue
- Avoid sleeping in a different room, as this, too, can spread bed bugs to other rooms in your home.
- Thoroughly launder in hot water and dry on your high-heat dryer, setting everything you can in the affected area, including bedding and clothing
- Thoroughly vacuum all floors, rugs, upholstered headboards, accent furniture, and other furnishings in the affected area and place the vacuum cleaner bag in an outside receptacle
- Place small items, such as books, clocks, and other items, in plastic bags for treatment
- Declutter your home, placing items you want to get rid of in a plastic bag before taking them to an outside trash receptacle
- Agree on a customized plan for your bed bug treatment. Costs to treat bed bugs vary, depending on the size of the area affected.
Why are Bed Bugs Difficult to Treat?
Bed bugs can be one of the most difficult pests to eliminate because:
- Bed bugs are difficult to detect due to their small size and nocturnal habits
- Bed bug eggs are difficult to find and remove
- Female bed bugs lay eggs every day—In several weeks, some 200 eggs can be deposited in an array of hidden places, glued to surfaces
- Bed bugs can live up to a year without a blood meal, surviving treatments by
hiding out in protected spaces for months
- Bed bugs are growing more resistant to insecticides
How do the Best Bed Bug Control Companies Treat Bed Bug Infestations?
The best bed bug control methods are ever-evolving, as these evasive, nocturnal pests are showing more resistance to insecticides. Local South Florida pest control companies, such as Petri Pest Control Services, are working with several treatment methods, combining traditional sprays and dust with other methods, such as:
- Heat treatments that can be localized or include entire structures
- Cold treatments that involve freezing affected areas with pressurized CO2
- Trapping and monitoring devices that detect the presence of bed bugs
- Tent fumigation if bed bug infestation is widespread and persistent
- Specially trained dogs that can detect bed bugs
Bed bugs may take a while to eliminate, as initial treatments may kill the adults, but eggs can be protected from treatments, and additional treatments may be needed to eliminate all bed bugs. The best bed bug pest control companies will monitor your results until no bed bug activity is evident.
Can Bed Bug Infestations Reoccur?
Bed bugs can enter your home in various ways, as they are tiny, no larger than 1/4 inch, and they are expert hitchhikers. Some of the things you can do to avoid bed bugs include:
- Enclosing your mattress and box springs in bed bug-proof mattress encasements, such as Protect-a-Bed.
- Checking under your mattresses for bed bugs when you check into a hotel and before you unpack your luggage
- Laundering clothing and all washable items in your luggage on returning home
- Vacuuming your luggage, shoes, electronics, and all other items in your luggage
- Vacuuming your college student’s electronics and backpack and laundering all clothing when they come home
- Avoid picking up discarded mattresses and furniture
- Vacuum bedroom floors often
- Avoid clutter in your home, especially under beds
- Contact a pest control company to perform a preventative treatment in cracks, crevices, and voids in your bedrooms
If you’re considering buying a home in South Florida, contact Petri Pest Control Services for a FREE bed bug inspection before you sign on the dotted line. Petri Pest Control Service, serving Palm Beach and Broward Counties for 65 years, offers a full spectrum of affordable pest control services that you can rely on! Contact Petri Pest Control!
Best Bed Bug Control Tips For New Homeowners in South Florida
Serving Broward County and Palm Beach County