Answers to the most frequently asked questions about bedbugs
Is there really a resurgence of bedbugs in the US?
There has definitely been an increase in bedbug infestations. There have now been infestations reported in EVERY STATE, including Alaska.
According to the 2105 “Bugs Without Borders” survey, conducted by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) and the University of Kentucky: “Bed bug infestations in the United States continue at high rates, with 99.6 percent of respondents having treated for bed bugs in the past year. Prior to 2000, only 25 percent of respondents had encountered a bed bug infestation.”
Also, according to the 2011 “Bed Bugs in America” survey, also conducted by the NPMA, 1 out of 5 Americans now report they have had a bedbug infestation or know someone who has encountered bedbugs at home or in a hotel.
Lastly, nearly all (99.6 percent) pest professionals have treated bedbugs in the past year.
Where do you find bedbugs?
Bedbugs are NOT discriminating pests. From 5-Star hotels and resorts to your next door neighbor, bedbugs can be found in just about any dwelling. Pest control professionals report most of their findings from single-family homes, multi-family dwellings, apartments and condos, and of course hotels and resorts. There have also been increased reports in hospitals, day-cares, libraries, college dorms, movie theaters, restaurants and even taxicabs. Your office building or favorite clothing store could also be targets.
How do I know what to look for?
Please refer to the front page of our website and Click on the Bed Bug Detection link.
How do I know if my home OR the hotel where I am staying has bedbugs?
KnowBedBugs.com offers a Printable Inspection Checklist. You can find it here
How do I treat for bedbugs?
Treating for bedbug is a difficult, and sometimes a time and $$ consuming project. Bedbugs are GREAT hitchhikers, and therefore can be found in just about any area, as mentioned, and NOT ONLY in the bed! Bedbugs are nocturnal, and can live several months (up to 1 year in some studies) without eating. They can live in the walls of your home, in electric sockets, in drawers and in the curtains and curtain rods. For ALL of these reasons, bedbugs can be a difficult problem to deal with. Despite what you hear or see, bedbugs are NOT a pest that you can control with do-it-yourself sprays, foggers, etc. In the event of an infestation, you should contact a pest control professional.
How do I prevent a bedbug infestation in the first place?
As we have stated, bedbugs can be found almost anywhere humans are found. In order to protect yourself, be sure to:
1. Check all luggage, clothing and linens after you return from a trip.
2. If you notice signs of bed bugs, immediately place ALL luggage, clothing, etc.. into 2-ply bags and seal them.
3. Take all questionable items in bags directly to the laundry, and wash in hot water.
4. Move them to the dryer, and again, dry using High Heat.
5. If you fear you may be transporting them on your personal clothing, disrobe and place all clothing into 2-ply bags. Launder the clothes as suggested in steps 3 and 4.
Do bedbugs transmit disease? Can I get sick from bedbugs?
As of right now, there are no cases of diseases being transmitted by bed bugs. However, bites can leave itchy red marks on your skin. And, according to a 2016 report conducted and published in Austral Entomology, “bed bugs can induce a potentially dangerous (and possibly even deadly) systemic reaction in individuals repeatedly exposed to bed bugs.” Indeed, two researchers who deliberately exposed themselves to bedbugs, in relatively small numbers, developed a widespread rash with itching, indicative of a serious systemic reaction. Both were admitted to a hospital emergency room for treatment and subsequently made a full recovery. The bottom line here is this: If you have an infestation, call a pest control professional and deal with the issue quickly. Although no diseases have been linked to bedbugs bites (yet!), repeated exposure to bites is NOT healthy.