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The War On Bed Bugs Expert Insights Into Control Services
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The War on Bed Bugs: Expert Insights into Control Services

There is no pest quite like the bed bug. These are insects shrouded in mystery. What do they look like, where do they hide, and what causes bed bug problems? Today, we'll share expert insights to help you understand what you're up against, how to get rid of these pests, and what works to keep them out long-term.

If you have questions we don't address in this short article or would like to get specific information regarding your unique pest issue, remember that your Lake Norman Home Services service team is here to help. Along with providing informative resources like this one, we offer professional bed bug control in Mooresville. Contact us for assistance.

What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

When a bed bug hatches, it starts its life as a nymph. A nymph is a smaller version of an adult, but there are some differences. Like adults, nymphs have six legs, three body parts, and two antennae, but they are a different shape and color. Rather than reddish-brown, they are white. But they may appear red during or after a blood meal. Rather than the shape of an apple seed, they are more of a teardrop shape. But you'll have a hard time making out this shape because a newly hatched nymph is 1/26 of an inch in length.

As bed bug nymphs grow and shed their skins, they begin to appear a tannish color. You'll also see a black or red coloration develop through the growth process. The black is fecal matter inside the insect, and the red is human blood. When it reaches its adult stage, its skin is less transparent, though it is still possible to see excrement or blood in an adult bed bug. At full size, it is about 1/5 of an inch long. But, though they are large enough to see if you look closely, you won't likely see them in any stage of development. These are incredibly elusive critters. You need to know how to check for bed bugs in your home.

All The Places Bed Bugs Like To Hide In Your Home

One of the most important things to know about bed bugs is how to locate them. These are hitchhiking pests. They don't live in your yard and find their way indoors through cracks and crevices. They move from place to place passively, hidden inside items you bring into the house. If you know where they hide, you may catch these creepy critters before they come home with you. Here are a few places to look for them:

  • Between mattresses and box springs
  • In the thin gap of a mattress or box spring seam
  • In crevices and cavities of a bed frame
  • Underneath the feet of a bed frame, nightstand, or other furniture
  • Inside an alarm clock or computer
  • Inside a piano, piano stool, or guitar
  • In and between couch cushions
  • Inside the pockets of furniture
  • In ripped or torn upholstery
  • In the gaps of a painting or picture frame
  • Inside luggage, duffel bags, book bags, pocketbooks, and other carriables

Along with hiding inside objects, you'll also find bed bugs hiding in these areas:

  • Under a carpet
  • In a baseboard gap
  • Behind crown molding
  • In an outlet
  • Inside damaged drywall

When you see these insects or detect black spotting or dried brown bloodstains, you know to take precautions. If you find them in your home, it is time to think about bed bug removal. We recommend immediately contacting a professional for bed bug control, but there are a few steps you may take first if you choose.

Bed Bug Control Tips For Mooresville Homeowners

It is possible to control bed bugs if you catch them early on and know how they got into your home. For example, moving your suitcases outside and closely examining them would be a good start if you just returned from a trip. Here are a few more tips to help you with direct control:

  • If you find bed bugs in a dry-safe item, put it in the dryer for over 30 minutes. The high heat will exterminate these pests in all stages of development.
  • If you suspect bed bugs are in an item that is not dry-safe, you may consider freezing those bugs for four days.
  • If you suspect bed bug activity in clothing or bedding, wash them. Soapy water acts as a desiccant. For good measure, run these items through a dry cycle as well.
  • Vacuum the floor in any area where you find bed bugs. Put the bag outdoors when you finish.
  • Use the crack and crevice attachment to suck up bed bugs hiding in cracks, gaps, and pockets.

Contact a licensed professional when control materials are required to arrest bed bug activity. Not only does a professional apply appropriate materials in a targeted manner, but the process used by a professional will be comprehensive. A common issue with DIY bed bug control is that the insects evade the treatment methods. A pest management professional knows how to get rid of bed bugs.

Contact your Lake Norman Home Services service team to schedule an inspection if you're in the Mooresville area. We'll help you get an understanding of what you're dealing with in your home and the best course of action for treatment.

Long-Term Bed Bug Prevention: Tips To Prevent Reinfestation

Whether you've gotten rid of the bed bugs and want to keep your home bug-free, or you're hoping to prevent an infestation and avoid bed bug bites, the following prevention tips will help to keep those pests out.

Inspect Your Room

When staying somewhere overnight, even if it is the home of a friend, it is wise to do a quick inspection. Bed bugs are sneaky initially, and your friend may not know they have an infestation. Here's what to look for:

  • Check for black or brown stains on linen, bedspreads, and upholstery.
  • Use a debit card to drag along mattress seams.
  • Check underneath bed frame feet and the feet of other furniture.
  • Inspect outlet covers, baseboards, and carpet edges for black streaks or stains.

Keep your bags out of your sleeping area during the inspection. If you must bring your bags in, store them in the bathroom until you finish.

Take Simple Precautions

When you spend the night (or several nights) away from home, take simple precautions to prevent bed bugs from getting into your luggage, bags, and clothing:

  • Store luggage high or inside a sealed plastic bag to keep bed bugs out. A trash bag and a twist tie are all that you'll need.
  • If you don't wish to store your luggage inside bags, you may apply a lavender scent to mask the smell of your items.
  • Store your laundry in a sealed plastic bag. Bed bugs are strongly attracted to things that have touched your skin.
  • When opening luggage, do so on a luggage rack or table.

These simple steps can have a big impact. Bed bugs often go home with people because people take no steps to stop them.

Keep A Watchful Eye At Work Or School

You can find bed bugs in many places besides hotels and motels. You can go to work in an office space and pick these pests up. It is a good idea to keep watch while at work and take the following steps:

  • A simple check of your office chair may alert you to black or brown stains.
  • The appearance of a tiny bed bug nymph on your leg should not go undetected.
  • If you hear a coworker has an infestation at home, remember they can bring bed bugs to work, but go easy on them. These insects infiltrate the cleanest environments.
  • Keep your items, such as bags, briefcases, or clothing, separated from those of fellow workers or students.

Bed bugs are small, sneaky insects, but you can catch them if you're looking. Plus, it pays to apply a little caution.

Check Used Household Items

Bed bugs often go from home to home, hidden inside household items, like the soldiers in a Trojan horse. Always inspect the used items you purchase, even if you get them from a store. Look for black or brown stains, shed skins, tiny white eggs, or live bed bugs. Remember, you may find them in any item with a void to hide in, not just mattresses, box springs, and bed frames.

If these insects get into your Mooresville home, your Lake Norman Home Services bed bug inspectors are here to help. We can evaluate your pest infestation and provide industry-leading control solutions. When we treat your infestation, we treat the entire home. These pests travel from room to room, passing through walls to escape treatments. Our strategy prevents this.

If you have questions or would like to request a service visit, reach out to Lake Norman Home Services through our contact page. You don't have to let these pests continue to take over your home. Get relief from bed bugs today today!

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