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Bed Bug-Proofing Your Bedding In Phoenix

September 10, 2023

bed bug in home

As a pest control company offering weekly DIY tips for pest control, we talk a lot about bug-proofing. Sealing your exterior walls and removing tiny entry points is critical in the process of keeping bugs out of your home. Unfortunately, bed bugs don't live outside in your yard, and they don't enter through gaps, cracks, and holes. You can do the hard work of applying exclusions to every inch of your exterior and do nothing to keep bed bugs out. They are hitchhiking pests. So, if you hope to bed bug-proof your Phoenix residence, you're going to have to take unique steps that take into consideration how these bugs behave. Join us today as we break down bed bug control into a few tiny, digestible bites. We'll share everything you need to know to keep your home free of bed bugs. If you currently have bugs and you need a bed bug exterminator near you, contact Green Home Pest Control for service in Phoenix. We use advanced control solutions backed by science and experience. For immediate assistance, you can always jump straight to our contact page.

How Bed Bugs Get Inside Homes And Into Bedding

What causes bed bugs to get into homes in Phoenix? The simple answer is that nothing causes bed bugs to want to live with you – well, nothing specific regarding your home. It's really all about people. Bed bugs feed on blood, and they do this in a unique way. A bed bug will come out at night, crawl on the skin, and feed for about 15 minutes. After the initial feeding, it will move forward a short distance and feed again for another 15 minutes. If conditions are favorable, it will do this a third time. It is difficult for a bed bug to feed like this on humans until they are in a prone position or sitting somewhat still. Therefore, they have good reason to want to hide near (or inside) beds, couches, and chairs. Another reason that motivates them to live with us is that they are attracted to carbon dioxide. When humans go to sleep, we produce more carbon dioxide, which triggers the feeding instinct in bed bugs. Together, these two reasons make bed bugs permanent fixtures inside man-made structures. In fact, bed bugs do so well in human domiciles that they are not found in the wild. Every home provides the conditions for feeding. But, some environments are more favorable to bed bugs.

What conditions do bed bugs like to find in a home? They want to find lots of clutter. These insects are drawn to tight spaces and will move about more freely in an environment that has clutter lying on the floor. They're also hoping to find a home with mattresses that are easily accessible. Their favorite hiding place is inside mattresses or in the seams around mattresses. But a bed bug doesn't choose its environment. It makes the best of whatever situation it finds itself in. It must do this because it has no choice. Bed bugs spread passively.

How does passive dispersal work? When a bed bug hides in a tight space, sometimes that space is mobile. For example, it might hide in a crease or pocket of a piece of luggage. When the luggage item moves, so does the bed bug. They hide in many moveable objects, such as book bags, pocketbooks, duffel bags, couches, chairs, boxes, box springs, clothing, pianos, and more.

There are two ways a bed bug will travel. An item may have live bugs or eggs hidden in it. An infestation that begins with live bugs differs from one that begins with eggs. If you have one or two bed bugs invade your home, it will take time to notice. When a batch of eggs hatches, each baby bed bug will come out and try to bite three times in a night feeding. If you are sensitive to insect bites, you may wake up with an extensive rash and dozens of bumps on your skin. That is going to catch your attention quickly.

Now that you know how bed bugs travel and that they don't choose your home, there is only one question left to consider, "Where can you get bed bugs from?" The answer may surprise you. Here are a few of the many places people have picked bed bugs up:

  • Hotels

  • Motels

  • 5-star resorts

  • Office spaces

  • Libraries

  • Movie theaters

  • Daycares

  • Retirement homes

  • Schools

  • The home of a friend or relative

  • Buses

  • Taxis

  • Trains

  • Planes

  • And more.

It is essential that you stay vigilant and keep watch for bed bugs no matter where you go. All a bed bug needs is the cover of darkness to get into your stuff or onto your person. They can also come into your home with your kids, friends, extended family, or inside used household items. Learn how to be the gatekeeper and keep these bugs out. 

Helpful Tips To Reduce Your Risk For Bed Bugs

Are there ways to prevent bed bugs from hitching a ride home with you when you go to work or school, visit a friend or extended family member, or travel on vacation? When you drop your kids off at school or daycare, are there ways to prevent bed bugs from coming back home with them? Yes. There are many methods to stop bed bugs in their tracks. Here's what works and why.

Performing Inspections: No matter where you are, you can take a moment to do a quick check for warning signs of bed bugs. You may simply pull your phone out, turn the light on and scan around you. When checking a hotel room, keep your luggage in the bathroom (or in your vehicle) to prevent any bed bugs from entering it as you perform your inspection.

Protecting Luggage: When you open your luggage, you open yourself up to an infestation. Keep this in mind. Always use the luggage rack provided. It will elevate your luggage so bed bugs can't easily get inside. Once you're done, store your luggage high if possible. You may also consider putting it in a sealed bag or applying a lavender spray to mask the scent of your items from bed bugs. It is your scent that lures bed bugs into your luggage.

Protecting Laundry: While on vacation, manage your laundry so that no items sit out where they can attract bed bugs. A simple solution is a standard trash bag. Put your laundry in the bag and seal it closed so bed bugs can't get inside.

Launder Your Items: When returning home from vacation or a sleepover, it is wise to put all your clothing through the washer and dryer. Soapy water acts as a desiccant and dries bed bugs out, and the heat from the drier is high enough to eliminate bed bugs and their eggs.

Keeping Items Apart: When you go to work or school, avoid putting your stuff near the stuff of your fellow students or coworkers. Bed bugs can transfer between items that are touching, particularly if the items are placed in a dark locker.

Targeted Control: If you detect bed bugs in an item, consider how you might address those bugs naturally. Any item that is dryer-safe can go right in there for thirty minutes. Items can also be placed in a freezer. But it takes three to four days to exterminate bed bugs using cold temperatures. 

We've broken down the ways you can reduce the risk of a bed bug infestation. You have tools now to prevent a bed bug problem. But, you'll need a few more details to help you keep bed bugs out or to catch an infestation early. Let's look at how to find bed bugs in the places they hide, both in and away from home.

Common Warning Signs That Bed Bugs Have Gotten Into Your Home

The warning signs of a bed bug infestation are often subtle at first. You'll need to know where to look and what you're looking for in these places. Keep in mind that all of these warning signs are present anywhere bed bugs are hiding. You can use these tips to help you find bed bugs at work, school, vacation, etc. Be sure to share them with your kids, extended family, and friends so they know how to detect these bugs.

  • Bed bug droppings mixed with brown stains. There are many bugs that leave black, sticky droppings or black fecal spots on fabrics, but bed bugs are unique in that they'll also leave brown stains as well. These brown stains are often mistaken for insect urine. The brown stains left specifically by bed bugs are excreted blood. During the night, the blood dries and turns tan or brown. The coloration is mixed with the black of the fecal matter. 

  • Shed skins. Bed bugs shed their skins as they pass from one stage to the next. They shed these skins in tight spaces, so you'll need a tool to probe in gaps and creases, such as a butter knife or a debit card. Drag along seams and check under labels. A flashlight can also help with this task by shining light into cracks and crevices. If you shine a light in a crevice and see insects wiggling around in there, you've almost definitely found bed bugs.

  • Bed bug nymphs. When a bed bug hatches, it is pale and about 1/26 of an inch long. As it grows, it will become tan and eventually brownish-red. When searching for bed bugs, it is helpful to keep in mind how they change in appearance.

  • Adult Bed Bugs. These look like apple seeds in size and shape. They have six legs and two antennae. If a bed bug has recently fed, it will have a redder appearance.  

  • Pheromone odors. The scent of bed bugs is often compared to coriander or cilantro. Some people use a foul description, such as the aroma of a locker room towel. It depends on the infestation. 

If you find bed bugs while away from home, take steps to prevent them from returning home with you. If you find them in your home, contact a licensed pest management professional as soon as possible. It is extremely hard to get rid of bed bugs. Professionals use specialized knowledge and field experience to get the best results. 

The Best Solution For Bed Bug Activity In Phoenix

When you need help addressing a bed bug infestation in Phoenix, contact Green Home Pest Control for assistance. Our bed bug inspectors can check your home or business, track the activity, and provide targeted bed bug control. We use all of the most advanced solutions.

Canine Inspections: Dogs have an incredible sense of smell. They can detect live bed bugs in your home. We use canine inspectors to zero in on trouble spots. 

Conventional Treatments: We use a range of products and materials that are appropriate for application in your home. Your technician will apply the materials in key locations, such as outlets, wall voids, and along carpets. We also inspect and treat beds.

Heat Remediation: We are committed to offering environmentally friendly solutions as much as possible. When properly applied, heat can arrest bed bug activity. We use state-of-the-art technology to raise the temperature to above 90 degrees for at least 90 minutes and take measures to prevent the bugs from escaping the treatment or finding cold spots in the room.  

We also offer preventative care to help you guard against bed bug infestations. One way we assist you is by selling specialty mattresses that are resistant to bed bug infestations. When these pests can't get into their favorite hiding place, they may not survive to infest your home. Would you like to learn more about any of these services? Jump to our Contact Us page and tell us about your bed bug problem or concerns. We'll get right back to you and steer you toward a solution that will work best for you.

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