Bed bugs are believed to have first been documented around the 11th century, so they are not a modern pest as such. However, their increase in population has only occurred in the last few decades.

It is believed that between the 1930s and the 1980s, bed bug populations decreased, but after this period they rapidly increased. Resistance to insecticides is partially to blame, as is the much more common movement of individuals and products around the world. Bed bugs don’t fly so they need a method to transfer from one location to another.

People often bring them back from holidays, and it is said that the Great Fire of London was responsible for England’s first introduction to this pest. Apparently, when wood was transported to London to rebuild, a number of bed bugs came along for the ride.

How do you spot if you have bed bugs in your home?

Spotting bed bugs can be tricky. Firstly, they are very small, but they are visible to the human eye. Secondly, they often don’t come out until humans are sleeping. Although this isn’t a rule written in stone, it is more common than not. Thirdly, many people simply don’t react to bed bug bites.

Nevertheless, WebMD lists several ways that you can spot bed bug movement in your home. This list includes finding egg casings, dead bugs, seeing blood spots on bed linen and on walls, being bitten, and also odors and fecal matter on sheets.

White bed sheets are an easy giveaway for bed bugs as they stain the linen with fecal matter (rust-colored spots), and blood from where they have bitten their victim.

What approaches can you employ to get rid of bed bugs?

An infestation of bed bugs is no joke and should be taken very seriously. It would be a strange person who was happy to find bed bugs setting up home in their residence. These particular pests breed incredibly fast and therefore need to be dealt with in a speedy manner.

A bed bug specialist will be able to determine the scale of your problem, assess how many rooms are affected, and treat the pests accordingly. Bed bug removal may take more than one visit, and if the infestation is widespread, may involve more than one room.

Obviously, prevention of bed bugs would be ideal rather than treatment, but once they are in your home, you will need to find ways to eliminate them yourself, or through a pest control expert.

Can you prevent bed bugs from getting into your home?

One concern with bed bugs is how they travel. It isn’t that unusual for holiday goers to unwittingly bring these pests back home with them. In recent years, many people choose to pursue compensation for bed bugs in hotels. Fortunately, the pandemic may have seen a decrease in the number of bed bugs in hostels and hotels around the world.

As tourism declined, so ultimately did the food source for bed bugs. They would have also been unable to move around quite so freely. However, in cities across the states, the problem persists.

The most likely way you will get bed bugs is by bringing them home yourself. So, when you travel, take a good look at a hotel room before accepting it. Check under the mattress. Look at the sheets for those tell-tale signs mentioned earlier.

Keep your bags off the ground, and when you go home, don’t just take your luggage straight indoors. Try to wash everything you have at a high temperature as soon as you arrive home to lower the chances of anything being able to settle into your home.

Does diatomaceous earth work?

If you decide to try and tackle a bed bug problem yourself then you are likely to search the net. One of the first things that will pop up is something called diatomaceous earth.

Now, ideally, you would want to prevent pests from invading your house in the first place. If prevention is not possible then you will need to find ways to get rid of them instead. Many people suggest diatomaceous earth as the answer.

Diatomaceous earth is natural, and supposedly non-toxic, however, breathing it in should be avoided. Small children and animals should avoid DE too. There are different grades of diatomaceous earth, and one is classed as food-grade, this is safer than pool grade.

It works as a desiccant and dries out the outer shell of the pest, but it should be noted that it takes a long time to work. It can take many days before the bed bug will actually die. It can be used as a barrier to prevent bed bugs from moving freely, but it works most effectively when in combination with other techniques, such as heat treatments.

How to find a bed bug specialist

Initially, the net will be your best option. Although recommendations are always the best route, it is unlikely that any of your friends are going to confess to having bed bug treatments.

Search for a company that has services aimed specifically at bed bugs, and ask them to come and assess your problem. Any bed bug expert will take your concern seriously, and they will be able to offer you advice and make a plan to remove these pests permanently.

If at all possible, ask for testimonials, or see if they have reviews on Trustpilot or Google as well.

Summary

Bed bugs are hardy little pests that won’t go without a fight. You can certainly draw up a plan to remove them from your home using a combination of methods including diatomaceous earth, but this may not be enough.

If you start spotting signs that you have bed bugs in one of your rooms, or wore, throughout the home, then you will need to start a course of action. Certainly using diatomaceous earth will reduce your issues but you may also need to call in an expert who understands what it takes to get rid of bed bugs forever.

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