How to Kill Bedbugs

Types of Bedbug Insecticides

Bedbug infestations are extremely hard to get rid of and usually require treatment by a professional pest controller. There are a few insecticides that can be used to exterminate these pests, including sprays, dusts, and aerosols.

Deltamethrin is one of the most popular contact insecticides; it is odorless and leaves no visible residue. This insecticide is relatively safe and it will break down once is has been exposed to sunlight for a few days. Deltamethrin is safe for most people and mammals, although it should not be exposed to any fish or aquatic animals. The insecticide paralyzes the bedbugs and when combined with another compound prevents recovery, killing the insect. This type of insecticide is available in liquid, powder and aerosol form.

Hydroprene is a slow acting insecticide; it stops bedbugs from reaching maturity and thus prevents breeding so the bedbugs die out more slowly. It can only be used indoors as it breaks down in sunlight. It is generally considered safe.

Terminix offers a treatment called RapidFreeze which uses dry ice to freeze the insects and their eggs. It is fast and non-toxic. Be careful that you are eradicating the insects and not just herding them into a different room.

At-Home Methods of Killing Bedbugs

In some cases mattresses must be discarded. If there are holes or tears in the fabric that means that bedbugs could have gotten inside and the mattresses must be thrown away. Washing mattress covers, pillows, and comforters in the hottest water setting will kill the bedbugs. If the comforter cannot be washed, putting the comforter in a dryer at the highest heat possible should kill any bedbugs on the comforter. Sealing the mattress inside a zippered bug proof encasement will trap the pests in and eventually kill them.

Keep in mind, though, that bed bugs can live for up to a year or longer without eating. Bed bugs do not just live in the bed; they have homes in cracks in the walls, crevices in furniture, and in hollow pockets behind pictures and electrical outlets. These at-home methods usually will not eradicate the infestation so it is recommended that you contact a professional pest controller, especially when using chemicals.

As Always, Prevention is the Best Medicine

In order to prevent the spread of beg bugs make sure that you are not staying in a hotel room infested by bedbugs. If possible, bring a flashlight and carefully insect the bed and furniture around the room for bedbugs or signs of bedbugs, such as dark brown feces stains and blood stains from squashed bugs. Be cautious when buying used furniture as they may be harboring bedbugs and bedbug eggs. Mattresses especially carry a high risk of being infested. When returning home from a trip, check your suitcase for any stowaways.

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