How guarded is your home? Do your doors and windows have spacing around them? Is your foundation filled with cracks, gaps, and openings? Do you have window/door screens that are a little worse for wear and need to be replaced? Some homes have none of these problems and are like fortresses in terms of pest prevention. Unfortunately, no matter how sealed your home is, it will never be guarded against bed bugs. These small, blood-feeding pests are not like other insects. To help you better understand bed bugs, here are some things you should know, including all the ways they get into San Francisco Bay Area homes.
Where Bed Bugs Live
One might assume that bed bugs only live around beds. This could not be further from the truth. Although bed bugs crawl into beds at night to feed, these pests will hide just about anywhere. When infesting homes, bed bugs will squeeze into cracks and crevices, behind outlets, into wall voids, inside furniture, and anywhere else that provides them seclusion from people and animals that might mean them harm. This is one of the reasons why these pests are so difficult to identify and eliminate.
How Bed Bug Infestations Spread
Bed bugs are not suited to live outdoors for long periods. For this reason, they rely on people to survive and to get around. Keeping this in mind, most often, bed bug infestations are spread by traveling people. If you plan on taking a vacation or staying with family, be mindful of where bed bugs could be hiding and how easy it is for these pests to crawl onto items like luggage and clothing.
Another way you might pick up bed bugs is by inviting people over to your house. If your family or friends are dealing with an active infestation and do not know it, they might accidentally spread these pests.
Sometimes bed bugs crawl from one item to another out in public. As a general rule, if you set any item down for more than 20 minutes, bed bugs will have a chance to crawl over from nearby places. These pests are drawn to items by residual carbon dioxide and the oils left by human skin. This is why they are drawn to things like furniture, clothing, and bags.
Strategies To Prevent Bed Bugs
Avoiding bed bugs is an art form that not many people are skilled in. To help you master avoiding these pests, here are some helpful tips and tricks to live by.
- When traveling, check rooms you will be staying in for signs of bed bugs. Common signs include blood stains, reddish-black specs of fecal matter, and live oval-shaped, ¼ to 3/16” long, reddish-brown bugs (bed bugs).
- Before coming home from being out, store used clothing inside a sealed plastic bag.
- Wash this clothing immediately after getting home in the wash on high heat. Check used furniture, clothing, and other items for bed bugs before buying them.
- Teach your family and friends about bed bugs so they can identify them inside their home and avoid bringing them into yours.
What To Do About Bed Bugs Inside Your Home
Sleeping while being bitten by bed bugs is difficult. To get these pests out of your home quickly, do not hesitate to involve the experts at Smith’s Pest Management. Our team understands troublesome pests and has the advanced tools needed to identify and eliminate unwanted bed bugs.
Contact us today to discuss your options and find a time to have your San Francisco Bay Area home inspected for bed bugs.