How to prevent a bed bug infestation this fall

If you're preparing for a last-minute summer vacation, the back-to-school season or a new job, you should be aware of a notoriously pesky insect: the bed bug. These pests are difficult to get rid of and can be picked up anywhere. It is important to know what precautions to take to avoid bed bugs whether you're staying at a hotel or moving into a college dormitory. Knowledge and preventative pest control measures are the most important thing you can do to prevent a bed bug infestation.

Colleges
Young people on a budget will often purchase second-hand pieces to furnish their college dorms or apartments. It is critical to inspect used furniture to ensure it is not infested with bed bugs, as they can spread. Checking small cracks and creases thoroughly for insects, eggs and stains is key to preventing an infestation from used furniture. College students living in school dormitories should be instructed by their parents to inspect mattresses and headboards to ensure the room is not crawling with the pests.

Elementary and high schools
College dorms, apartments and fraternity houses aren't the only place a student can pick up bed bugs. More and more elementary and high schools are reporting problems with the pests, and it is entirely possible for younger kids to pick them up unknowingly and bring them home. Teaching children to keep an eye out for pests and inspecting their belongings regularly is key to preventing an infestation, especially if your child's school stores students' belongings in close quarters.

Hotels and meeting rooms
It is equally important to check beds at a hotel when traveling. Bed bug infestations are not exclusive to unclean hotels, and luxury accommodations are just as likely to have an infestation as a budget room. These pests are hitchhikers and can crawl into luggage and clothing, making it possible to bring the infestation home when your vacation is over. Prevent a stowaway by making sure you place your suitcase on the luggage rack in your room, rather than on a bed or on the carpet. Upon arriving home, it is important to wash everything in your suitcase to kill any bed bugs that may have gotten in.

Seek assistance
If bed bugs, eggs or other suspicious signs of the pests are found, it is important to call a professional exterminator as soon as possible to handle the problem. Waiting may cause the infestation to worsen, and bed bugs are notoriously difficult for homeowners to treat on their own. An insect control company can recommend the best form of treatment for the pests.


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