After spring break many people like to bring home reminders of the vacation, such as personalized gifts, seashells, keychains, and souvenirs. One thing people don’t want to return home with is bed bugs.
Notorious for hitchhiking, bed bugs are opportunistic pests, taking advantage of any and all circumstances that will allow them to thrive; and spring break never fails to deliver. Unsuspecting warm bodies, numerous hiding places (e.g. luggage, purses, duffel bags, piles of clothes and bedding) and ample hitchhiking opportunities—it’s a bed bug’s dream come true!
Although you can’t safeguard your child against bed bugs all of the time, there are steps you can take to help minimize the chances of them bringing bed bugs into your home. Whether your child is traveling home from spring break, visiting for the weekend, or just popping in to do some laundry, bed bugs may be tagging along.
HOW TO PREVENT BED BUGS FROM INFESTING YOUR HOME
Once you get home from your travels, keep your luggage outside or in the garage so you can do a final inspection.
Inspect suitcases, bags or purses and boxes for signs of bed bugs prior to removal, especially if they were used for spring break travel.
Do not place items in your suitcase, duffle bag or backpack back in your drawer or closets.
Clothing items should be laundered immediately using high temp water and dryer settings. Duffle bags or backpacks can be put in a dryer for 45 minutes on high heat as this will kill any eggs or bed bugs that could have made it back.
Vacuum any luggage, purses, backpacks and bags that were used as well as the areas surrounding them. Discard the vacuum contents in the trash and take it out immediately.
Wipe down hard-surfaced items such as laptops and cases.
Bedrooms should be inspected prior to unpacking to avoid any possibilities of cross-contamination. A quick look at the mattress as well as any other furniture in the room can help reduce the likelihood of any hideaways.
If you don’t have one already, it’s a good idea to purchase a mattress and box spring encasement. While encasements can’t prevent bed bugs from entering dorm rooms, they can prevent bed bugs from burrowing deep into the seams of the mattress and box spring. An encasement that has a bug-proof zipper is best.
I think I have bed bugs! What do I do?
If you do spot any dark spots of fecal matter, light brown colored skins, or live bugs themselves, you are going to want to contact the professionals at ECO Bed Bug Exterminators. Bed bugs are not a fix it yourself solution since they are really good at hiding and multiplying. These pests are not good company to have and you may find yourself in a nightmare if you try to take care of matters on your own. Hopefully, with enough education and understanding of how bed bugs can affect you, you will not have to worry about them coming back with you on your next trip.