No matter how clean your house is or how often you change your bed sheets, you and your family can still be the victims of bed bugs. The pesky little creatures are small, brown, and oval-shaped, and they can live in mattresses, box springs, and sheets, among other places. They feed off of human and animal blood, so it's not uncommon to wake up with tiny red bites if you have a bed-bug infestation.
Female bed bugs can lay over a hundred eggs at one time, so it's important to eliminate the infestation as soon as possible, so the bugs don't have the chance to keep reproducing. You can bring bed bugs home from a hotel in your luggage or even on your clothing.
Since the bugs live and thrive where you and your family sleep, it's best to go with an eco-friendly method of eradicating them. You can eliminate bed bugs from your home without using toxic chemicals as long as you stick to a meticulous routine. Products that you most likely already have in your pantry can also help.
Here are some tips for getting rid of bed bugs naturally:
1. Wash All Bedding
As soon as you notice a bed-bug infestation, pull all bedding, including sheets, quilts, comforters, and mattress protectors, off of every bed in your home. Put them in plastic bags and close them tightly. Keep the bedding in the bags for 24 hours to kill all of the bed bugs, nymphs, and eggs.
Then, wash all of the items in the hottest temperature the fabric will allow, along with an eco-friendly laundry detergent. Dry the items in a line outdoor or in a dryer, depending on your preferred method.
2. Encase the Mattresses and Box Springs
Specialized mattress and box-spring encasements work in two ways: they will trap and kill all existing bed bugs and keep new ones from burrowing inside. If possible, take all infested mattresses and box springs outdoors and shake them out before encasing them.
Wipe down all headboards and bed frames with a 25/75 solution of distilled white vinegar and warm water before putting the bed back together to kill any bed-bug eggs and nymphs that may have infested those areas as well.
3. Vacuum Daily
While you're battling a bed-bug invasion, it's important to vacuum all carpeting and rugs in your home on a daily basis. Just the vibration from the cleaner alone can kill adult bed bugs, nymphs, and eggs. Empty the vacuum bag or canister contents into a tightly sealed plastic bag each time you vacuum, and immediately dispose of the bags in your outside garbage can.
Contact a company like Godfather's Exterminating Inc for more help.