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No one dreams of having any insects in their house, not to mention bed bugs. They are considered one of the most difficult insects to eradicate, plus, they usually hide in bed mattresses or sofas, which makes it even more complicated and unpleasant. What’s more, once you fight them, they’re still likely to reappear over and over again. It’s a myth that bed bugs appear only in dirty, cluttered interiors – it’s actually a common problem, and it can concern everyone – that’s why is useful to know some facts about bed bugs and learn how to fight them and protect the house in the future.

What are bed bugs?

Bed bugs are in fact a type of insects that feed with human blood, that’s why they like to appear in warm, dark places that are close to humans, so in beds, sofas and armchairs. They can be from one to even seven millimetres big. They usually spread by crawling or in personal items such as bedcovers, blankets, cushions, pillows or towels. They can be dangerous to human health because of their bites. The bites usually resemble a mosquito bite, with small red spots visible on skin, normally near the body parts that have direct contact with a bed or mattress surface, like legs, arms, back or face. The bites can be additionally itchy. In severe cases, bed bug bites may cause anaphylaxis as an extreme allergic reaction. It’s then vital to get rid of them by finding a top rated exterminator.

How to bed bugs spread?

Although bed bugs are relatively small, they can spread quite fast. They may spread themselves or by carrying their eggs. They’re usually transferred on clothes or other personal items. Bugs may also be carried by animals, and then transferred to people. Fortunately, the spread of bed bugs is not always fast because they can’t fly. The pace of spreading often depends on people who may transfer them on their items, for example, when travelling. When they only crawl, they can normally move 3 to 4 feet per minute, so it’s not a very fast pace. Remember, though, that if you notice bed bugs in one of the rooms, you should keep in mind that they may appear in the remaining parts of the house soon.

How long do bed bugs live?

Unfortunately, the lifespan of a bed bug is relatively long. They can live from six months to even a year without feeding. Once they find a safe and comfortable place to hide, they are not easy to be eradicated completely. Therefore, it’s important to check the bedrooms regularly not only at home but also in any hotels or accommodation before staying in. Additionally, it’s good to do regular disinfections of all the furniture and change the bedcovers, duvets or blankets.

How to fight bed bugs?

Even though you put the effort in cleaning and preventing bed bugs in your house, it still may happen that they appear one day. Then, it’s vital to know how to react and fight them immediately. There are actually a few ways to try out. Some of the home cleaning methods include, for example, using a special anti-insect spray, in all the possible hiding places – beds, dressers, carpets and electronics such as TV or computer. You also have to wash all the materials in high temperatures for about thirty minutes. You can also put the bedcovers and cushions in plastic bags and put them in the freezer for some time – very low temperatures can also eradicate the bugs or their eggs.

Other methods of fighting bed bugs involve using special chemicals – insecticides – that are based on strong chemical substances. They include, for example, pyrethrins and pyrethroids, pyrroles or neonicotinoids. If you want to avoid the use of chemicals, you may try out some less artificial methods, such as plant-oil based products. Remember that when the home-made methods don’t seem to work, it’s possible to contact and use professional services. They will offer professional and complex help and disinfection, which usually takes a few days. You will have to leave your house then. The substances used in professional disinfection are also dangerous for pets and can trigger allergic reactions in humans.

What if bed bugs appear regularly?

Sometimes single disinfection is not enough to fight bed bugs permanently. That’s why it’s necessary to pay attention to every unusual signal that you see at home – even if you don’t see the bugs, but notice bloodstains on your sheets or clothes, it may be a sign of their presence. The same goes for any unusual spots on the skin. Sometimes bugs’ eggs or faecal can be noticeable on beds of sofas. In all these cases you should consider disinfection – the faster your react, the more probable eradicating all the bugs will become.

Bed bugs are difficult, but not impossible to fight. If you keep yourself alerted and pay attention to all the unusual signals at your home, it’s easy to spot the bugs and fight against them. They’re not dangerous if they get spotted quickly. Remember to seek professional help if the problem gets serious and overwhelming.

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