Bed bugs are small insects that feed on human or animal blood. They can cause skin irritation, allergic reactions, and sleepless nights. Though they are not known to transmit disease, they can be difficult to eradicate once they have invaded your home. Fortunately, there are several home remedies you can use to kill bed bugs and help prevent future infestations.
Vacuum and Steam Clean
One of the best ways to get rid of bed bugs is to regularly vacuum mattresses, bedding, and furniture. Vacuuming removes eggs, larvae, and adult bed bugs from these surfaces. For best results, use a vacuum with a HEPA filter. After vacuuming, immediately dispose of the contents in a sealed bag.
Another way to kill bed bugs is by using a steam cleaner. A steam cleaner emits high heat that kills bed bugs and their eggs on contact. Use a steam cleaner on mattresses, box springs, bedding, furniture, and other items where bed bugs may be hiding. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Wash Clothing and Bedding
Hot water is effective at killing bed bugs and their eggs. Any clothing or bedding that may have been exposed to bed bugs should be laundered in hot water and then dried in a hot dryer for at least 20 minutes. If possible, wash items separately and avoid mixing them with other laundry.
Use a Hair Dryer
High heat is one of the most effective methods of killing bed bugs. You can use a hair dryer to kill bed bugs on mattresses, furniture, and other items. Set the hair dryer to its highest setting and direct it at the areas where bed bugs may be hiding. Move the hair dryer slowly to ensure that all areas are heated to the proper temperature.
Seal Cracks and Crevices
Bed bugs can enter your home through cracks and crevices in walls and floors. To prevent bed bugs from entering your home, seal any cracks or crevices with caulk or expanding foam. This will help keep bed bugs out and prevent new infestations.
Use Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is a powder made from fossilized algae. It is a natural insecticide that kills bed bugs on contact. Apply diatomaceous earth in areas where bed bugs may be hiding, such as behind baseboards, under furniture, and in cracks and crevices. Be sure to wear a face mask when applying diatomaceous earth, as it can be harmful if inhaled.
Getting rid of bed bugs can be a challenge, but it is possible with some effort and the right home remedies. Regularly vacuuming, steam cleaning, laundering clothing and bedding in hot water, using a hair dryer, and applying diatomaceous earth can all help to eliminate bed bug infestations. Additionally, sealing cracks and crevices can help to prevent future infestations. If you have any questions or concerns, consult a professional pest control specialist.