So, now you know what bed bugs look like, how you may have gotten them, and how to control them. Next we want to share with you how to treat an infestation and avoid any future ones. Please enjoy this next post in our series Invasion of the Body Snackers – Bed bugs are back supporting Dr. Ballards presentation at Bug Off Pest Control Center’s 2010 New York Pest Expo

Treatment

Once upon a time, bed bugs were treated by the wholesale application of DDT. This is no longer an option.  Our arsenal of effective bed bug products has been depleted and treatment today requires thoroughness and precision using a variety of options.  We mentioned vacuuming as an important element of control (IPM VacAtrix VacBug Sucker).  Other non-chemical techniques are steaming with dry vapor (mattresses, boxsprings, carpets and upholstery), isolation of infestibles (black bags, air-tight containers), sealing of cracks and crevices, thermal treatments (items in black bags exposed to direct sunlight at 120ºF for 2 to 3 hours will create a heat chamber and kill all life stages of the pest), freeze treatments and encasement of mattresses, boxsprings, pillows and cushions in hypoallergenic covers and active mattress and boxspring  liners. Eventually, the use of insecticides labeled for bed bugs and for the treatment site may be inevitable if the goal is to eradicate bed bugs.  (An option that is growing in popularity is fumigation.  For details regarding this technique please refer to our friends at Bed Bugs and Beyond).

As part of a comprehensive treatment, pest control specialists will use a variety of flushing agents ( CB 80CB123 Extra ), contact aerosols (Topia,  EcoExempt KO), residual aerosols in cracks and crevices ( D-ForceBedlam ), liquid residuals on surfaces and along edges (Permacide ConcentrateEcoExempt IC2P-1 QuartsP-1 Gallons,Deltamethrin SprayKBB ), powders in voids and other inaccessible areas ( Diatomaceous EarthEcoExempt DPyganic), sanitizers for mattresses, cushions, pillows, drapes, carpets ( Sterifab PintsSterifab GallonsSterifab 5-Gallon ) and growth regulators to prevent development into adulthood ( Gentrol VialsGentrol Pints ).  (Visit our Bed Bugs page for more available products). Please note, under no circumstances should you use kerosene, gasoline or total release foggers (“bombs”) for the control of bed bugs.

When bed bugs resurface, it may be due to  the reintroduction of infested items, migration from adjacent areas or the survival of pre-existing populations. Multiple visits may be required for success. Some reasons for follow-ups may be due to eggs hatching, failure to treat all harborage sites, insecticide resistance, structural deficiencies and lack of client cooperation.  For long-term control, monitoring (ClimbUp, Bed Moat,BDSNight Watch), followup maintenance programs and inspection of surrounding apartments should be considered until the problem is resolved. Bed bugs are going to be with us for a while. With greater awareness from the public, better skills on the part of professionals and the introduction of more effective treatment options, we can achieve optimum control.
(Read this article from Reader’s Digest).


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