Bed bugs are very prevalent in Alberta. Everyone is at risk of unknowingly bringing bed bugs into their home. They hitch rides on your clothes, luggage, furniture, and before you know it, you’ve got an infestation. When this happens, a common question we get is, ‘How do I get rid of bed bugs myself?’, and ‘How can I get rid of bed bugs fast?’.
There are many treatment methods for bed bugs with varying effectiveness. Eliminating bed bugs yourself is complex but not impossible. Hiring a professional pest control company for bed bug treatments is always the best bet, but if you’d prefer to DIY your bed bug control, there are a few things you can do to help get rid of those pesky bloodsuckers.
How Difficult is it to Get Rid of Bed Bugs?
Treating bed bugs is a relatively complex process and usually cannot be handled by home remedies. However, it is possible to DIY bed bug treatment if you follow instructions carefully. Be prepared that there is a fair amount of effort involved.
Of course, you do always have the option to call in the professionals! Many pest control companies have access to commercial insecticides and equipment that you don’t. Some of these treatments can safely treat whole houses or apartments. If you are already dealing with an infestation, a professional bed bug treatment will rid you of the tiny critters safely & effectively. Professional pest control technicians can also help you determine how you or a family member may have brought bed bugs into your home. This will help minimize the chance of re-infestation.
Let’s get into why we’re here. Read on to learn how to tackle this on your own.
Steps on How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Yourself
- Plan Your Path of Treatment
Most often bedrooms are a primary home for bedbugs, as they have the opportunity to feed on you while you sleep. However other rooms may also be infested. Especially if your infestation has had ample time to expand. With this in mind, it is recommended to plan to inspect and treat every room.
Plan a path starting from the bedrooms, from one end to the other on each floor of your home.
- Clean Up the Room and Remove as Many Objects as Possible
Reducing the amount of stuff in the room, will leave you with less guesswork when treating, and also less places for the critters to hide.
Now, be careful when you start moving things out of the room. It is best to contain items within the room, first. Then take them outside, where the bedbugs who are tagging along for the ride will not be able to feed on people or pets.
For soft items such as clothing and linens, place them in a bag. Then place that bagged item inside another bag. Now, carry one laundry load at a time to your washer and carefully release the contents of the inner bag into the washing machine. Now, tie up the outer bag, to seal the inner. Discard the bags somewhere safe, outside your home.
Wash the items in hot water, and dry on high heat for at least 30 minutes.
- Destroy Bed Bugs & Eggs on Your Bed and Mattress
It is likely that a large portion of the infestation exists directly on your bed frame & headboard, as well as on and in your mattress and sheets. You should have systematically removed and washed your bedding in step 2. Before completing this step, you will need to get some supplies:
- Bed bug pesticide concentrate or spray
- Bed bug pesticide dust
- Bed bug proof mattress encasements for your mattress and box spring
- Roll of 2-sided tape or bed bug traps made to place under the feet of a bed
Note: When we treat for bed bugs at Edmonton Exterminators, we use commercially available pesticides. We are not experts on the effectiveness of retail available pesticides for bed bugs. We are not recommending them with any promise of effectiveness. If you’re planning to conduct treatment yourself, you will need to ask your local hardware store for advice on the products they carry.
Now remove your mattress and box spring to get access to all sides of the bed frame. Use pesticides to treat the bed frame. It is recommended to use both spray and powder to get into all the crevices. The goal is to kill as many on contact as possible. Also to leave residual chemical to take care of any that you missed, once they come out of hiding. For suggested pesticide that kills bed bugs, head down to your local hardware store.
- Clean Thoroughly!
Vacuuming and clean inside of drawers, in the crevice behind baseboards, and anywhere you would expect may be a suspect place that bed bugs hide.
- Isolate Your Bed from the Rest of the Room
Now move your bed away from the wall and any other objects that could allow bed bugs to scale and drop onto your bed. Wrap 2-sided tape around each leg on the bed, and any other part that touches the floor. Cover your mattress and box spring with the encasements and replace them on the frame.
Now that this is complete, you have just crafted a bed bug-free place to sleep. You can rest feeling protected from more bites. Pretty awesome, hey?
Note that it is recommended that you continue to sleep in your room, or the bed bugs may venture out and infest other rooms in your house.
- Monitor Progress
Every few days, inspect for bed bugs on the sticky traps you made on the legs of your bed frames. Then replace the traps. Once you have no new critters captured on the traps for 2 weeks, you should be bed bug-free in that room and can place your bed back against the wall and discard the mattress encasements.
If you suspect that there are bed bugs in other rooms, use tape or sticky traps to monitor them. If you catch bed bugs, you know you need to treat that room.
The Heat Treatment Method
At Edmonton Exterminators, we don’t use heat treatment for bed bugs. However, this method can be successful. Because heat treatment doesn’t have any residual effect, we suggest combining heat treatment with insecticide.
If you wish to try heat treatment of the infested room, you will need to purchase or rent suitable equipment. A Google search will help you find some. We recommend using professional garage equipment. We also strongly suggest that you ensure you are aware of any hazards involved in the use of this equipment and proceed with caution.
Bed Bugs Health Risks
The good news is bed bugs are not known to spread disease, but their presence may cause itching and take a serious toll on your sleep quality. If you wake up with bed bug bites, you may worry, resulting in difficulty going to sleep.
The bites can cause skin irritation, resulting in excessive scratching that can sometimes lead to a skin infection or an allergic reaction requiring medical attention.
Once your treatment has rendered a bed bug-free home, remember to keep clutter to a minimum. This is especially important for the first few months after treatment in case the way the little critters made their way into your home, is unknowingly repeated. A clutter-free home will reduce the complexity of re-treatment, should it be necessary.
As mentioned, bed bug treatment is complicated. We recommend hiring a professional pest control company for this job. If you are using insecticides, we suggest seeking chemicals that are available at retail locations, as they need to pass health and safety regulations. Follow the instructions on the label carefully. If you need one-to-one professional advice or service for a bed bug problem, give us a call!
💡DID YOU KNOW?
Bed bugs were nearly eradicated back in the 1940s. They disappeared from the mid-1950s to the late 1990s, but in 1995 they came back infesting homes and hotels. Researchers believe the reason for this was a combination of increased human travel and resistance to pesticides.