If you have an image in your mind of bed bugs crawling around in your landscaping, exploring your exterior walls, and climbing into your home through cracks in your foundation, the first thing you need to do is erase that thought. While there are many bugs that live in your yard and have reasons to come into your Phoenix home, bed bugs don't do this. In fact, bed bugs don't have any reason to invade your home. They don't choose your home. They spread from one location to another by accident. We call this passive dispersal. Here's how it works.
What Many People Don't Know About Bed Bugs
- Bed bugs are almost exclusively indoor insects. They don't prefer to live outside and they have a difficult time doing so. They need to be in close proximity to mammals in order to get the blood meals they need. Their preference is for human blood. Therefore, they're almost always found in close proximity to where humans sleep or lounge.
- Bed bugs don't decide to change locations. They get inside objects that can be moved and then are transported to new locations. Some items they may get into are pocketbooks, luggage, gym bags, or mattresses.
- Bed bug infestations can begin with eggs. When a female bed bug lays eggs, the eggs can be transported with an item, such as eggs hidden in the seams of a piece of clothing. When the eggs get to the new location, they can hatch on their own without the need of the mother bed bug.
- Bed bugs make the best of a bad situation. While bed bugs prefer a cluttered home because clutter helps them do a better job of hiding, they will live in a clean and orderly home. They won't go outside if your home doesn't suit them. So, the idea that bed bugs only live in dirty homes is somewhat foolish.
How You Could Get Bed Bugs
Now that you understand how they spread, let's take a look at a few specific ways bed bugs could invade your Phoenix home by accident.
- If you go on a trip, you could come home with bed bugs or bed bug eggs.
- If someone comes to visit you, they could bring bed bugs or their eggs with them.
- If you go to work or school, you could bring bed bugs home.
- When your kids go to sleepovers, they could acquire bed bugs.
- When you go to work, you could pick up some bed bugs.
- You could get bed bugs when you visit a relative in assisted living.
- You could get bed bugs when you pick your kids up from daycare.
- A drive in a cab, bus, train, or plane can result in exposure to bed bugs.
- You can purchase a bed bug infestation when you buy used furniture.
- And more.
This is the nature of the problem. Bed bugs can invade Phoenix homes in many unexpected ways. There is no way to prevent a bed bug infestation with 100 percent certainty but there are ways you can reduce the chances.
Bed Bug Infestation Prevention
- When you spend the night away from home, do a quick inspection of your room. Look for black fecal spotting, shed skins, white eggs, dried blood stains (which look brown), and the presence of bed bugs hiding in cracks, creases, and compressed spaces.
- If you stay away from home for a period of time, be sure to store your laundry in a sealed plastic bag, such as a trash bag with a bread tie. Bed bugs are strongly attracted to the scent of items that have touched your skin.
- Store your luggage items in a sealed plastic bag, or consider spraying them with lavender or peppermint to deter bed bugs.
- When you return from a trip, run all of your laundry items through a 30-minute dryer cycle. This kills bed bugs in all stages of development.
- Teach your kids to do bed bug inspections when they stay anywhere away from home.
- Be on the lookout for bed bugs when in public transportation, or in dark spaces, such as a seat in a movie theater. Use the light on your smartphone to do a quick check for bed bug feces, blood staining, and shed skins. You might even see a bed bug crawling around in the dark.
- Inspect used furniture and items you pick up from the side of the road.
- Inspect spare bedrooms routinely after you've had visitors.
What To Do When You Find Bed Bugs
These insects are notoriously difficult to exterminate. The best solution for a bed bug infestation in Phoenix, Arizona is to contact Green Home Pest Control and request a bed bug treatment. Don't let the bed bugs bite. Reach out to us today for immediate assistance.