Table of Contents
- 1 What Are Bed Bugs?
- 2 What Are The Signs I Have Bed Bugs?
- 3 How Do Bed Bugs Start
- 4 Is It Difficult To Get Rid of Bed Bugs?
- 5 Finding the Right Exterminator
- 6 Other Steps to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
- 7 UTOPIA Zippered Encasement
- 8 Conclusion
You could be happily living your life in peace with nothing amiss. Everything is perfect. Waking up in the morning is great – the sunlight streams in through the window and everything is right in the world. But then, as you shower, you notice a little red spot on your arm. You ignore it, thinking that it’s just a mosquito bite. Yeah, it’s just a mosquito bite, or some sort of other bug bite. Couldn’t be anything insidious or serious, right? But then, the spot gets itchy. Then the next few weeks, the spots grow in number. Then you start wondering… how do bed bugs start?
|LINENSPA Zippered Encasement|
|UTOPIA Zippered Encasement|
|SAFEREST Premium Zippered Encasement|
After that, you may start asking yourself… is it really bed bugs, or is it something else? Maybe it’s just a rash. Maybe it’s something simpler. It couldn’t be bed bugs, after all you’re really careful with being clean. So then you start looking for the signs. Unfortunately, they’re all there…and it really does seem like a bed bug infestation.
Does this sound familiar? If it does, and if this is exactly what you’re going through (or went through), we completely sympathize. Unfortunately, bed bug invasions are a real and possible thing. You may think that it won’t ever happen to you, but it can – and it very well might. No matter how careful you may be. So if you’re wondering how do bed bugs start, don’t worry. We’ll talk about it in this article today – so that we can give you all of the information that you need to fight the bed bugs.
What Are Bed Bugs?
First of all, before we even get started, we do think that it’s important we talk about bed bugs and what they are. We’re doing this for the reason that it’s important to know the nature of bed bugs so that you can better understand what you will have to do later on. Maybe it’s unnecessary to some, and it probably is, but if it helps anyone reading this article to follow the steps in this guide better, then we are doing our job! So let’s talk about bed bugs.
Bed bugs are vampires. Well, not literally. But they certainly feed on blood! It doesn’t matter if it’s human blood or animal blood, but they will feed on blood. In fact, this is exactly why bed bugs like to hide in beds. These insects are nocturnal creatures, meaning they only really come out at night. This is probably why these bugs are so hard to spot. Your bed is the best possible place for them to hide, because they come out when you sleep. And when they bite you, you will barely even notice.
What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?
If you do manage to catch a glimpse of a bed bug, you will notice that they are bout the size of an apple seed – at least the adult bed bugs are. Bed bugs have flat bodies and are quite thin, they are only about the thickness of a credit card at their widest. Unless, of course, they’ve just had a blood meal. In that case, they do swell up.
Bed bugs are small, and they are also oval shaped. Also, they are brown in color. They do feed on blood though, so consequently when they have just fed they are a reddish color. Bed bugs shed their skin several times in their life time, and because of this you may find some shed skin around your home. Bed bugs move really quickly but do not fly.
How Do Bed Bugs Breed?
The females of this species will lay hundreds upon hundreds of eggs over their lifetime. If you’re thinking that you can perhaps see the eggs and kill them before they hatch, tough luck. Each egg is tiny, only about the size of a dust speck. Incredibly small! Immature bed bugs are basically called nymphs. It is these nymphs that will shed their skin (almost 5 times) before they mature. In perfect or even just favorable conditions, these insects can develop completely to maturity within a month. In the right conditions, you can get up to three generations of bed bugs in one year – or more!
Unfortunately, bed bugs do multiply quickly. Because of this, it’s truly important to nip the infestation in the bud. So if you begin to notice bed bugs, it’s honestly time to call the exterminator – if only for the reason that it’s so much easier to deal with these pests when their population is smaller.
What Are The Signs I Have Bed Bugs?
Another important thing for you to know is – what are the signs of a bed bug infestation? We put together a really easy list so that you can remember everything easily! Hopefully, this will help.
Shed skin on or around your bed can be indicative of a bed bug infestation. If you see what looks like shed skin around your bed, unfortunately this means that the insects have already begun breeding. Like we mentioned above, only the nymphs (newly hatched bugs) shed their skin. And so if you see what looks like shed bed bug skin or casings, it’s simply time to call the exterminators.
Little blood stains on your pillow cases or on your bed clothing (bed sheets, blankets, duvets and the like) can also mean that you’re in the midst of a bed bug invasion. Because these creatures feed on blood, sometimes you may end up leaving a few tiny droplets of blood on the bed. This is one of the most obvious signs that you have these pests in your home.
Brown Spots or Stains
You might notice these on your bed clothing or even on your furniture. If you see this, it could mean you either have a bed bug invasion, or you could have some other sort of insect living with you at home. These little brown spots are usually the feces of this insect. Droppings will usually absorb into cloth and fabric.
Small welts will start popping up on your skin. Bed bugs love to feed on human blood, so when that’s the case you might probably end up with a bunch of itchy spots on your skin. Unfortunately, bed bugs aren’t picky in the slightest, so they will bite any spot that’s open and feed on it. If bed bugs feed from you often enough, you can end up getting a bunch of these itchy spots clumped together. Eventually, they will start looking like rashes.
How Do Bed Bugs Start
Now we have arrived at the most important question: how do bed bugs start invading? There are a bunch of different answers to this question to be honest with you. So let’s try to talk about how exactly it is that these pesky little critters may come into your home.
They Snuck In
One of the simplest and also most common ways that bed bugs make it into your home is by them hitching a ride on you. All you have to do is be in an area that is infected with bed bugs – and you really only have to be there for a short period of time. It is at this point that these insects, which are as tiny as an apple seed and as thin as a credit card, can find a spot on your body or your possessions to hide in and hitch a ride in. If you have a problematic bed bug infestation right now, you probably walked through a place with bugs, or stayed somewhere that is also infested by them.
They Brought Their Passports
They come in through your luggage when you travel. Yes, it’s kind of crazy to think about, but if you stay in a hotel that is infested, there is a pretty big chance that you will bring these bugs home with you too. This is actually one of the best ways that bed bugs travel – all they need to do is hide in a seam in your luggage, or to hide in your clothes or other stuff.
They Came as Guests
Just as they might hitch a ride on you, they may also do the same to your family or friends, or people you live with. They can also come in via guests. Unfortunately, they may even come in via your pets. YES – your pets.
They Were Your Neighbors
If you live in an apartment building or if you live somewhere where every home is close enough to each other, this may present a problem. Bed bugs move very quickly, and as a result they are pretty good at traveling short distances. For this reason your neighbors’ bed bugs may find their way to your home, or vice versa.
Sadly, it’s usually quite difficult to tell how you got the bed bugs to begin with. With so many different ways they could have made it into your home, identifying the exact moment is almost impossible. But now that we have talked about how do bed bugs start, let’s talk about the important stuff.
Is It Difficult To Get Rid of Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs are annoying creatures – pesky when they’re in your home for sure, and incredibly difficult to “evict”. The difficulty level of your bed bug situation will depend completely on how bad the infestation in your home has gotten. If the bed bug population has grown significantly, chances are it will be quite difficult.
Ridding your home of these pets can be quite an endeavor. In some cases, it will not just take money, but also a significant amount of time and physical effort. This is simply true – it does take all of these which is why so many people may end up giving up. However, giving up is certainly NOT what you should do, especially since you’ll end up with bigger problems later on otherwise. Just be ready with money and time – once you have both you’ll be able to fight the invasion quite well.
Don’t panic, however – just because it may cost money does not mean it’s going to be astronomically expensive. Fact of the matter is it may cost anywhere from a couple hundred dollars to maybe a thousand, depending on how many exterminator treatments you will need. It will also depend on whether or not you need to completely replace your mattress.
To cut down on exterminator costs in terms of repeat visits, it’s best that you find the right exterminator right off the bat. Doing this will ensure that the exterminators will only need to visit you once.
Finding the Right Exterminator
The entire process of trying to get rid of bed bugs may be daunting enough without needing to also find the right exterminator. Although it may sound a bit difficult making sure you get the right one, we’re here to help you make the process just a slightest bit easier. Please do read the below guide so that you can be sure you are acquiring the right services for your home.
Find Out If They’re Qualified
The easiest way to do this is to ask if the company is qualified. Essentially, it’s important to ask if they are licensed. Don’t simply accept if they say “yes”, unless they actually have certifications on display. Otherwise, you may have to double check by calling the pesticide regulation office in your own state. This is quite honestly the best possible way to do it. We cannot stress enough the importance of hiring only qualified companies and technicians. If you hire somebody who isn’t quite qualified, you could end up putting yourself in danger – and your family or pets too. When it comes to this particular part, we truly must recommend that you do not compromise.
Check Feedback and Reputation
One more thing that you can do in order to make sure you’re hiring the right company is to check their reputation. By this, we mean you should look at the reviews and feedback about them on the internet. Looking at these reviews and feedback will let you know if the company is reliable and if they provide service that actually works. There are some people today who do not check upon a company’s reputation, simply hiring blindly. And then if things turn out badly, they get really upset at the waste of money, time, and effort. So if you want to be sure that you don’t have to deal with the same problem, it’s a good idea to look at what other people have to say about the exterminator agency before you sign any contracts. It’s truly fortunate that we live in the Internet age, and because of this we have so many different ways to check a company’s background.
How’s Their Safety?
Similarly, you should also see if a company is safe before you hire them. To do that, you can ask them a few questions. After all, it’s really, really important that the company you hire has the right safety policies and precautions. This is because you don’t want to compromise the safety of your family, your pets, your home and all of your possessions inside of it. Furthermore, you want to be sure that they also keep the safety of their technicians in mind. You don’t want to hire a company that doesn’t give its employees any protective gear. You also don’t want to hire a company that doesn’t train its employees on the latest and greatest techniques and chemicals that are being used today. After all, if they’re not well trained and knowledgeable in what they’re using , what’s to say that they will actually properly do their job?
Another thing that you should ask is if they have any insurance policies. Will the policy cover anything that goes wrong on your property? Will it cover their workers if anything happens to them? Will it cover the safety of your property and all of your possessions inside your home? Ask them as well if the insurance policy covers your health, should something go wrong.
Ask if They Have Guarantees Available on Their Work
In terms of guarantees, you can ask the company if they have any money back guarantee or warranty available. For example, if the company is at your home and is performing certain treatments to get rid of or eradicate a bedbug population, but the bed bugs don’t all die or they come back soon after – will they offer you your money back or come back for a second treatment for free? This is a good way to ensure you are hiring a quality company as well, because a good exterminator will stand by their work.
Other Steps to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
There are many different things that you can do in order to make sure the bed bugs die and never come back. For example, aside from hiring in exterminator, you can also use some bed bug killing products that are available for purchase online. Furthermore, you can take some extra steps to make sure that the bed bugs can no longer make a home in your bed or in your room. Now that we’ve talked about how bed bugs start; we want to talk about the different methods of getting them out of your home.
Clean Up Your Bed
Before you can do any of the other steps or use any of the other products on this list, the first thing that we recommend for you to do is to clean up your bed, your mattress, and your box spring. This will make it easier for you to make sure that when you start taking preventative measures, the bed bugs will actually stay away. So, here are the steps for cleaning up your bed and your mattress.
Take off all of the coverings and leave the mattress bare. Once everything is gone, take a hard bristled brush and start scrubbing at everything. Really get in there and scrub at the seams , folds, and any other indentations in your mattress that is even as thick as a credit card doing so will make sure that any remaining bed bugs will become dislodged, along with their eggs. Once you’ve really made sure that everything is scrubbed properly, the next thing to do is simply to vacuum everything up. make sure that you use a vacuum that has a disposable bag so that you don’t have to throw the entire vacuum away. Once you’re done vacuuming, place the dust bag in a plastic bag, seal it away and throw it in the outside garbage.
Clean Up the Clutter
To get rid of any places where bed bugs can hide, especially around your bed, start clearing up the clutter. Bed bugs like to stay in small nooks and crannies – as long as they fit, to be honest. And with how tiny even the adult bed bugs can be, you want to remove any chance for them to hide in other places around your bed. Do this and you will be sure that the bugs will go away – as long as you do the other steps on this guide too.
Do Your Home Maintenance
Of course, you can also do some home maintenance to make sure any holes in plaster are filled, any lifting carpets are glued back down, and any peeling wallpaper is remedied. Doing this will lessen even more the chances of bed bugs finding alternate places to hide. Plus, it helps to protect your home from future damage in general!
Put Everything Through the Wash
It’s important that you throw all of your clothes, beddings, linens, clothing, stuffed animals and the like in the wash, with the temperature setting on high. This is so that any remaining bed bugs will get killed in the process. Once you’ve done this, you can rest assured that bed bugs will have no other places where they can make a home. This is especially important once you:
Get a Mattress Casing
Now, the next thing that you can do is to use a zippered bag that is very tightly woven to encapsulate your mattress. The reason why this is important is to keep all of the bed bugs inside there so they don’t continue to spread through your home. Doing that will ensure that you trap the bed bugs long enough until they die. Make sure that you keep the casing on for at least a year to a year and a half. Doing so will ensure that any remaining bed bugs truly die off (yes! It really takes up to a year and a half for all of them to die off!).
If you don’t know what mattress casings are, we’re here to offer some product examples and suggestions that might help.
LINENSPA Zippered Encasement
The first product that we want to talk about in terms of mattress encasements is the LinenSpa Zippered Encasement. It comes in many different bed sizes such as Twin, TwinXL, Full, Full XL, Queen, King, and California King.
LINENSPA encasement is thin, doesn’t make any rustling noises, and is waterproof as well. Because it is waterproof, it will protect all of the sides of your mattress (all 6 of them) from any spills and possible stains. Although it’s waterproof, the material that they used is free of vinyl, making it safe for children. Also, despite being waterproof, this encasement is also machine-washable in case you want to finally give it a wash after the 1+ year period has passed.
The zippered closure for this product ensures that everything is very secure. You can expect this lightweight encasement to offer you a smooth but reliable protection or barrier against dust mites, allergens, and bed bugs. The makers of this product have also ensured that it’s soft and it’s breathable so that you can sleep well without having to deal with the plastic feeling some other mattress protectors may give.
Note that the manufacturers/sellers of this product offer a ten year long warranty period – just about as long as your average mattress would last!
Pros and Cons
UTOPIA Zippered Encasement
Much like the product we mentioned above, this product is available in various different sizes. You can get the Utopia Encasement in Twin, TwinXL, Full, Queen, King, and California King. It does have one less size available than the LinenSpa product, but nevertheless it’s a great way to keep all of the bed bugs out.
Utopia Mattress Encasement is quite affordable as well, coming in just slightly cheaper than the LinenSpa. The material it’s made out of is stretchable – basically polyester fabric that’s knitted. The material it’s made out of is supposed to make it more comfortable when you sleep. It also does have a waterproof PVC TPU backing on all of its sides, making it resist any leaking.
The zipper has a zipper guard to make sure it’s completely secure and protected from all angles. It protects your mattress from new bed bugs coming in, and keeps all the bed bugs already there from getting out. It’s also OEKO-TEX certified, meaning that it is certified to be free of any chemicals that may be harmful. Because of this, the Utopia mattress encasement is 100% safe for human use.
Oh, it’s also worth noting that it’s machine washable as well. You can tumble dry it for easier maintenance if need be – just make sure it’s on the low setting.
Pros and Cons
OUR CHOICE: SAFEREST Premium Zippered Encasement
Product Name: SAFEREST Premium Zippered Encasement
Product Description: The SAFEREST Premium Zippered Encasement is another product that we can recommend. This time, it’s a more premium version than the other two mentioned above, so you can expect that to be reflected in the price. Because you’re paying for, well, premium, you do end up having to shell out almost double for this brand.
Offer price: $$
Available in twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, as well as California king, this mattress encasement is also OEKO-TEX certified. If you want to really be sure that bed bugs won’t get in or out, you can rely on this product, which does offer 360 protection. To back up their claim, SafeRest got this product tested in labs, which is why it is certified to protect against bed bugs. This encasement will surround a mattress on all six sides. Because of this your mattress will be completely protected from bed bugs, dust mites, allergens, fluids, bacteria, sweat, and even urine. If you want to give this product a clean, it fortunately does happen to be machine washable.
SafeRest has ensured that this encasement will feel comfortable. They have done this by making sure the material is not only hypoallergenic, but also breathable. Furthermore, they’ve done their best to make sure the mattress also doesn’t crinkle or rustle while you move around.
To back up the quality of their product, SafeRest offers a 10 year long warranty period.
✔️Micro-zipper with Velcro flap ensures that bed bugs won’t get in or out
✔️10 year warranty
❌A small amount of people say that this has a chemical smell
❌Some people commented that liquids leaked through the encasement
Although it can be quite difficult to get rid of bed bugs, it’s not really all that impossible. We’ve given you plenty of information on this article, from how do bed bugs start to how to get rid of them completely. We hope that all of the information we’ve given will help you to shake the bed bugs forever!