Bedbugs plague your sleep and can leave you with uncomfortable itchy welts and a feeling of helplessness. Certain things can put you at a higher risk of an infestation. For example, if you travel often you are more likely to come into contact with bedbugs. Or, if you live in an apartment, they could invade from a neighbor's house. Even if you think you are low risk, there is still the chance of an infestation. This is because they can hitch a ride into your home on a library book, from a friends house, or even from the seats in a movie theater. The following tips will serve the dual purpose of helping you catch an infestation early while also keeping your bed free of the pests.
Tip #1: Set a Booby Trap
Your main goal is to keep bedbugs out of your bed. A simple way to do this is to purchase bed leg interceptors. These devices have an area in the middle for the leg of your bed that is then surrounded by a moat. You fill the moat area with soapy water. Bed bugs trying to access the bed drown in the moat. Not only does this keep the bugs from making their way into the bed, it also lets you know if any have found their way into your home. Check the moats every day when you make your bed so you can call a pest control firm for immediate bed bug treatment as soon as you notice the pests.
Tip #2: Protect Your Mattress
Protecting your mattress, even with moats, is a three-pronged defense plan:
Pull the bed away from the wall. Bedbugs can climb the wall and reach your mattress in this manner. By ensuring the bed is not in contact with the wall, you are keeping the pests out.
Encase the mattress in a bedbug-proof mattress bag. If a bedbug does find its way into your sheets, all you have to do is wash and dry them to kill the pest since it won't be able to burrow into the mattress to breed.
Keep items off your bed. Don't lay shopping bags, dirty clothing, or suitcases on your bed. These items could be harboring bedbugs.
Tip #3: Kill Them With Heat
Many professional pest control companies use heat treatments to kill bedbugs. An exposure to 118 degree Fahrenheit temperatures for 90 minutes will kill both bedbugs and their eggs. For items like clothing and sheets, you can achieve this by using the hot air cycle on your clothes dryer. If bedbugs infest furniture, there are heat tent appliances that you can rent or hire to treat the furniture. There are even portable versions of the heat machine that you can purchase to use for treating suitcases, library books, or other small items as you bring them into your home.