Tales from the Bed Bug Trenches

Learn and benefit from private glimpses of four households as they fight to save their furnishings and their sanity against bed bug encampments.  Meet Frank, a physician leaving in the well-to-do Forest Hill region of Toronto whose house becomes his enemy; Michelle, a social worker “living in chaos” in a rented apartment with her boyfriend; a mother fixated on ridding her home of bed bugs no matter what the cost; and Lucas, whose bedroom served as a beachhead for a bed bug assault.

If you wondered what is so bothersome about a few bed bug bites in the night – this is a must read to comprehend the trauma of bed bugs - the feeling of incessant itchiness, the loss of a sense of security, and the stigma of feeling like a leper.

As you read, remember bed bug prevention and eradication begins with education – “spread the word, not the bed bug”.  Learn the signs of bed bugs.  Positive identification of bed bugs is the first step before embarking on activities such as bagging, washing and drying clothing.  Remember, it is the drying, the high heat that kills the bed bugs, not the water.  Ziploc bagging serves to contain any bugs that may be on the clothes, until treated in the dryer.  Then, store the treated clothes in a ­new Ziploc.  Double-sided tape on furniture legs sounds effective while giving a false sense of security.  Some bugs will escape from the tape and it is suspected trapped bed bugs release a chemical alarm warning others to stay clear – which only serves to drive the infestation deeper into the household and makes it harder to find the pests.

A mattress encasement (including the box spring) is an excellent investment.  Ensure it is bed bug proof, not just for dust and mites.  Mattresses are expensive and encasements will preserve your investment.   Call the professionals – bed bugs dog will pinpoint the location of the vermin and a pest control operator will ensure the remediation steps are as efficient and effective as possible.  Don’t be like the mother releasing pesticides in every nook and corner of her house – inadvertently exasperating the infestation.

Learn and benefit from these private glimpses:  Home, interrupted and Bed intruder