Do you worry about or have a bed bug infestation? If so, you are joining the 1 in 5 Americans that have had a bed bug problem or know someone who has. Trying to figure out the best way to treat a bed bug situation?
Getting rid of bed bugs doesn’t have to involve a bunch of harsh chemicals. Here are five methods of natural bed bug prevention.
One of the fastest ways to get rid of bed bugs is to use a steamer. You will need a high-heat steamer for it to be effective. No worries, you can rent one from home improvement stores.
Make sure you let the steamer heat up fully, and then you apply the steam to all spaces bed bugs could be in your home. You should treat more than just your bedroom. Bed bugs also find other places to live including sofas and other upholstery furniture.
Put your pillowcases in the dryer on the highest possible temperature setting to steam them. The heat from the steam will also get rid of hidden eggs.
2. Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is a natural white powder that can help eliminate bed bug problems. Make sure you buy the food-grade diatomaceous earth. It is rather cheap and is safe to use around household pets and children.
The diatomaceous earth pierces the bed bugs exoskeletons. If you look at this powder under a microscope, you will see it has sharp edges not visible to the naked eye. These particles kill bed bugs by preventing the bed bugs from getting vital nutrients and fluids.
This process can take some time. You will start to see a few dead bed bugs around the house.
You should apply this diatomaceous earth around popular bed bug hangouts like dark corners and under the bed. Do not use this powder in damp areas.
3. Tea Tree or Lavender Oil
Using essential oils, like lavender and tea tree, may not kill bed bugs. These oils make a great deterrent. Make a diluted oil solution with about 10 drops of tea tree oil (or lavender) and mix with water.
Use a spray bottle to apply this solution. You can spray it directly on surfaces like underneath your bed, sofa, and other inner spots of furniture.
You should be careful when applying essential oils. Even though they are natural, they can still harm you. Some people have allergies and the oils can be harmful if they get in your eyes.
Another way to clear out some bed bugs is to get a powerful vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter that can help you suck up bugs, eggs, and nymphs. Make sure you also have a crevice tool to get into hard to reach areas.
Before you start sweeping, get a stiff brush and scrub the mattress stitching, seams, and crevices. This will help loosen any eggs and hiding bed bugs. Make sure your vacuum is on the most powerful setting.
Start vacuuming your whole mattress. Be sure to focus on edges, seams, stitching, and any other areas the bugs could hide. Next vacuum near the bed head and other parts of the bed frame, and get all crevices, edges, and cracks.
Be sure you lift the mattress to get the base and everything underneath. Keep vacuuming around the room, and get every corner, crack, and crevice.
Clean the entire floor and clean under the bed. Move your furniture and clean under anything that touches the floor. Take the vacuum bag and put it in a sealed plastic bag.
Take your time when you vacuum. You want to make sure you do a good job. If you miss just a few bugs or eggs, the infestation could come back.
5. Dry and Freeze
Make sure you grab all your bedding, clothing, or any other fabric near the bed. Get all fabric even if it isn’t infested to be sure all eggs are destroyed. Dry all the bedding and clothing on the highest heat setting.
It’s important to also declutter your room and get rid of clothing you no longer wear. Having a pile of clothes around your room is a great place to hide bugs.
You can also try freezing clothing and fabric if you don’t want to wash certain items on the highest temperature setting in the washing machine. Make sure your home freezer is set to zero. You will need to place all the infested items in the freezer for at least four days.
Keeping the Bugs Away
After you complete these steps, it’s important to take preventative measures to ensure they do not return. This is vital to keep your home bed bug free!
Buy bed bug-proof encasements for all of your mattresses and box springs. This will also help reduce must mites and help you get healthier sleep.
Fill all the joints and cracks around your bed frames and headboards with a sealant or caulk. This will remove all the hiding places for bed bugs.
You can also install bed bug traps under your bed. These traps are cheap and easy. You will also be able to detect an infestation early, so be sure you check your traps regularly.
Make sure you keep clothing away from your bed. Don’t let piles of clothes get out of control.
You can also use scents like thyme, cinnamon, and peppermint to deter bed bugs. You may want to disinfect the room occasionally to ensure there is nothing lurking in your room.
Final Thoughts on Natural Bed Bug Prevention
Having a bed bug infestation can be devastating. You just want your life back. With the natural bed bug prevention steps listed above, you can take steps to get your house back.
Bed bugs may not die overnight. Once you have a few bed bugs, the infestation grows rapidly because an adult can lay at least 200 eggs in about 2-4 months.
If you would like to leave the work to the professionals, contact us today. We can give you a free estimate and answer your questions, so you can live comfortably in your home again.