Bed Bug Control | Pesticide Research Institute


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Worried about bed bugs?

While public health agencies recommend against do-it-yourself treatment of bed bug infestations, knowing whats involved from correct identification to the range of treatment options available will go a long way towards ensuring a safe and successful resolution to your bed bug problem.

Bed bugs are stealthy insect parasites that live with people in their homes. Adults are brownish-red, oval-shaped and flattened like a lentil. By day bed bugs hide in cracks and crevices, mostly in and near beds, and by night they become active to feed but they are happy to adjust to their hosts schedule. Bed bugs are not known to spread disease, but most people experience painful itching and swelling from their bites.

It only takes one mated female to start an infestation, and populations can double within 2 weeks. Bed bugs can last several months in the home, but without feeding, all life stages die after about 70 days.

Stop Bed Bugs From Inhabiting Your Home

Bed bugs are transferred between residences, hotels, and other facilities by stowing away in items that people move around, primarily luggage, clothing, and furniture. They can also move between rooms and apartment units through cracks in floors and walls. Bed bugs are just as likely to infest a clean home as a messy one even surviving months in an empty home but clutter does make control more difficult. Here are some important steps you can take to prevent bed bug infestations.

Tips for the Home

Tips for Travelers

How Do I Know If I Have An Infestation?

Read on to learn more about low-impact approaches to managing bed bug infestations. Also included is a comparison of the active ingredients commonly used in bed bug pesticide products.

Interested in finding out more about specific bed bug insecticide products? The Pest Smart app is now available in the iTunes Store. Conveniently access pesticide data on your iPhone and iPad while on the job, in the store, and at home.

Using a combination of non-chemical methods for treating and preventing bed bug infestations is important for any successful control plan. These are measures that you can take, as well as methods that require special equipment and services provided by pest control professionals.

Exclusion Dont panic! Most items can be treated and saved. Throwing everything out is expensive, could further the spread of bed bugs and cause more stress, so discard infested belongings only if necessary.

Sanitation Sanitation is key for both treatment and prevention. Keep clutter down to reduce hiding places.

Heat Treatment For Rooms Pest control professionals have developed total-room heat treatments that are highly effective at killing bed bugs and their eggs. Pestec was an early adopter in using heat to manage bed bug infestations for residential, commercial and hospitality clients and continues to use this technique for treating heavier infestations, cluttered spaces and contaminated items.

Steam Treatment for Beds and Furniture Steam cleaning is an effective way of reducing bed bug infestations, particularly in locations where insecticide use may be undesirable.

Cold Treatment for Infested Items Exposure to an extended period of below-freezing temperatures can kill all life stages of bed bugs.

Recognize that when you use bed bug control pesticides, you should be ready to deal with these potential consequences:

Precautions to Take When Using Bed Bug Control Products

If you determine that pesticides are necessary, take these precautionary steps to reduce the potential for adverse effects:

There are more than 300 pesticide products approved for use against bed bugs; most of these contain compounds called pyrethroids as the active ingredient. Many bed bug populations have developed resistance to pyrethroids and their botanically derived cousins, pyrethrins. Some bed bug pesticides are restricted for use only by licensed pest-control professionals. In general, professionals have the resources and experience to apply pesticides more effectively than residents can do on their own.

Lower Impact Pesticide Bed Bug Treatments

Pesticide Bed Bug Treatments With Significant Adverse Effects

The Federal Strategy on Bed Bugs Draft was released for public review on September 9th, 2013 and can be accessed on the EPAs web site. By combining their collective expertise and knowledge, the Federal Bed Bug Workgroup (EPA, CDC, HUD, USDA) created this strategy for the Federal government and others who are affected by bed bugs. By providing current science-based, quality information and education materials, encouraging objective evaluations of interventions, and promoting research to improve prevention and control techniques, the Workgroup seeks to raise awareness and increase collaboration among stakeholders.

This resource is organized in sections devoted to the prevention of bed bug infestations, surveillance and IPM for bed bugs, community efforts, education and communication, and research. This document is in draft form and continues to be developed as an important resource for bed bug control

EPA has created an online product-search tool specifically for bed bug pesticides, enabling easy access to up-to-date, basic information about EPA-approved pesticides. The agency has also issued a pesticide alert to help people avoid the most common problems associated with bed bug pesticides.

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Bed Bug Control | Pesticide Research Institute

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