So, as previously mentioned, yesterday at work I found a bed bug crawling on my scarf. Luckily, at the time the scarf was not wrapped around my neck- but close enough. It was laying over the back of my chair. I immediately secured the little pest with a piece of scotch tape (Lesson #1-don’t smash them because then they can’t be identified). It turned into a day full of cleaners and exterminators and advice from everyone about how to get rid of them and where to check in the building and how to make sure that they won’t end up at my house. I have compiled a list of said information for my own reference and just incase anyone else ever has a similar experience (knock on wood).
Lesson #2 – Identification – I’m not going to show you a picture because I’m not mean, but it basically looks like a flattened apple seed. Brownish/blackish in color. If you know what a deer tick looks like before it is filled with blood, a bed bug is basically the same except bigger and flatter.
Lesson #3 – Freaking out- Once you have confirmed the specimen to be a bed bug, it’s time to freak out and worry if it’s bitten you, if it’s laying eggs in your office chair, or if it came from your home (gasp!).
Lesson #4 – Don’t worry they don’t fly or jump. The only way that they can move around is by walking from one contact point to another.
Lesson #5 – They are hiders, they don’t like the light. Once they are in your home/car/place of work etc, they can easily fit into small cracks and seams in chairs, mattresses (hence bed bugs), behind picture frames, inside of electrical outlets, basically anywhere that you can think to look, and many that you probably won’t think of.
Lesson #6 – Heat and alcohol kill them. Everything has to be steam cleaned and vacuumed. If you suspect they might be on your clothes, put them in the dryer. My co-workers advised me against putting my clothes into the microwave or oven.
Lesson #8 – If you are in a location that you know or suspect may have an infestation, do not put your bag, jacket, or any other personal belongings on the floor where they may crawl in. Also, avoid sitting on cloth surfaces, and leaning against any walls and door frames. If you really want to be thorough, lint roll yourself and spray yourself and your things with a strong alcohol solution when you leave. IMPORTANT do not light anything on fire until the alcohol solution is dry.
Lesson #9 – Basically, do not let them into your house, it can cost thousands of dollars to have them exterminated (no joke!).
So I found all of this advice to be helpful and scary. I wouldn’t wish a bed bug infestation on my worst enemy now, but I thought it would be nice to pass along some knowledge in the event that someone does have a suspected bed bug experience.
Okay, thanks for reading, I can’t resist this: Nighty night, don’t let the bed bugs bite!!!