So you got yourself a great two-bedroom apartment in a nice neighborhood, with ample storage space, a large patio, and really close to your work. You start moving and unpacking your belongings over the weekend when suddenly you notice some shed skins along the carpet edges and some dark spots in the seams of the curtain and behind the headboard of the bed. It all culminates with the appearance of a flat, oval, reddish-brown bug running along the living room floor, desperate to find a place to hide and wait for night’s cover.
And then it hits you: you just moved into a place infested with bed bugs. While the tiny critters don’t carry any diseases and are not a serious threat to your health, they do feed off of your blood and can decorate your arms and shoulders with extremely itchy bumps. For others who may not react to bed bug bites at all, the psychological impact is still powerful: from anxiety and sleep disorders to PTSD and even depression, the emotional toll of the blood suckers can certainly disrupt homeowners’ lives.
It’s not a secret anymore that Canada’s bed bug problem is getting worse by the day: pest control experts say the frequency of reports involving bed bugs has increased by 20 percent from last year, continuing the “compounding growth” trend of the last six years. But while Canadians may have become familiarized with the thought that bed bugs have spread far and wide through the country, invading both urban settings and rural areas, most expect them to remain inside homes where they can feed on sleeping hosts. Few know what to make of their child coming home from school all bitten and swollen – and are baffled by the thought that bed bugs have now taken hold of school settings.
In general, schools and institutional child care environments are not favorable to bed bug infestations – the critters do indeed prefer to dwell in the proximity of sleeping – and unsuspected – hosts.
According to the 2013 Bugs Without Borders Survey, 99.6% of U.S.-based professional pest management companies encountered a bed bug infestation in the past year. This fact alone is enough to make your skin crawl, but wait, it gets worse. As bed bugs are the most formidable pest that infests home – even more so than the resilient cockroach – their numbers are only expected to continue to rise in the years to come.
If you are one of the countless people who have discovered bed bugs in their home, you may be confused about what steps to take next to get them out safely and effectively. In order to ensure a pest-free home and get the chance to sleep easy once again, apply the following tips as soon as you spot bed bugs on your property.
The first step you should take the moment you detect bed bugs in your home is to call a professional.
If your home has been infested with bed bugs, chances are you have searched extensively for home remedies to get them out. Vacuuming, sealing, heating, steaming, and, of course, freezing them are some of the most common treatments used extensively by homeowners, some more effective than others. However, new evidence indicates that bed bugs are, in fact, much more resilient to home remedies – particularly freezing – than previously thought.
According to a study published in the Journal of Economic Entomology titled “Cold Tolerance of Bed Bugs and Practical Recommendations for Control,”bed bugs have a“freeze-intolerant”defense against the cold that protects them in such extreme environments. This is achieved by lowering the freezing point of their bodily fluids to withstand the sudden decrease in temperature. These findings were based off placing bed bugs of different life cycles in varying degrees of freezing temperatures, also testing their ability to feed after these treatments .
Removing bed bugs from a home is no walk in the park. Even after countless treatments, some home owners find they simply can’t get rid of these relentless pests. This can be accounted to a number of factors, but most notably it is the bedbugs’ growing resistance to pesticides that make them so difficult to kill. However, there is one treatment that has taken the pest control industry by storm due to its effectiveness and safety: heat treatment.
Unlike pesticides, heat treatment is much safer for the home and family, and bed bugs have not yet been able to develop resistance to its application. But despite its numerous benefits, many homeowners still have questions and concerns about its safety and application. In order to help you better understand the ins and outs of this revolutionary solution for bed bugs, following are some of the most common FAQs homeowners have about the heat treatment process.