Bed Bugs are little insects that can make sleeping not fun anymore for you and your partner. The insects bite and crawl all over your body in a nasty fashion that can make you dread the thought of sleeping. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to get rid of bedbugs.
DIY methods such as installing bed bug interceptors, desiccant dust, and steam cleaners work against bedbugs. The methods can clear your bed of any bed bugs within no time.
While DIY remedies for bedbugs work and are cheaper than hiring pest control services, they come with disadvantages, especially for the elderly.
Do-it-yourself methods can take a toll on an aging body. Some require the operation of dangerous chemicals, which is a bigger risk than getting rid of the bugs. You might also have a false sense of protection when not done effectively. That is why it is best to have professionals handle your situation.
Whichever way you choose to get rid of bedbugs. Here are some intrigues about bedbugs and solutions to get rid of them if you are a senior.
How to Investigate a Bed for Bed Bugs
You do not have to spot a bed bug crawling on your bed to know that you have an infestation. A rule of thumb is that if you cannot sleep comfortably on your bed, or dread the thought of sleeping and have bite spots all over your body, know that you are not alone in your bed—considering your partner.
The creatures come inside your house via luggage, used clothes, and items that provide a good hiding space. Inside your house, they invade bed frames, mattresses, headboards, and box springs. So, the best places to spot them are those they like to hide.
If you have had a bedbug issue for a while, there is a good chance the bugs have spread to nearby rooms. The couch in the living room is a good starting point to spot them outside the bedroom, as they will hide in places where they can easily access human blood.
Apart from couches, they could invade your children's or grandchildren's bedrooms, car seats, and wall crevices surrounding the living room couch or bedroom bed.
While on your mattress, the bloodthirsty creatures will occupy the edges and folds during the day. At night, when you turn off the lights, they creep out and attack. You might notice your sheets having rusty spots and some bed bug skin. Bloodstains on your sheets are also a sure sign of an infestation.
Another sign of an infestation is a musty odor that the creature releases.
Bed Bug Help for seniors—Home Treatment Options For bedbugs
DIY remedies are not the perfect way to end your bedbug infestation problem. But they do come in handy if you are looking for something to keep things in order for a while before calling an exterminator for a long-term solution. Here are some ways to manage your bedbug problem personally:
Using steam cleaners, you can eliminate a large portion of bed bugs hiding in your bed and other places around the house. Steam cleaners reach up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Adult bed bugs cannot survive such high temperatures. Bedbug eggs also cannot hatch after exposure to such high temperatures.
However, you will sweat a lot trying to make the method work. To eliminate the majority of bedbugs, you must pass the steam cleaner carefully around your mattress. The process is tiring, but does well to solve heavy bedbug infestation.
Repeat the procedure on the pillows, the bed, pillow covers, and comforters. You will get the best results when focusing the heat on the folds, edges, and seams where bed bugs hide most.
Brushing your bed at the joints with a hard-brush compliments steaming, as the bugs will come out of the small spaces when disturbed.
Bed covers limit the movement of bedbugs. The tiny creatures will not have anywhere to go when enclosed in a bedbug-proof mattress cover. Eventually, they will die of starvation and leave your bed bug free.
However, you cannot use mattress covers as a sole solution to bedbugs, as most of them only limit movement for bugs trapped in the mattress. Keep in mind that bed bugs hide in tiny cracks in the walls, and the bed too. You can use the mattress cover as a solution after steam cleaning your entire bedroom.
Most mattress covers do not have folds, and will not provide bedbugs a home. In the end, they will cut the number of bedbugs on your bed.
Bedbugs hide in tiny cracks in walls; they can do this because of their flat bodies that will fit any space with the width of a credit card.
Brushing all the cracks in the walls and hiding them with sealants can deter bed bugs from creating a nest. Not only are these nests unsightly, but they also provide a gateway for the bugs to reach you at night.
Silicon makes the best material for sealants that deter bed bugs from moving out of cracks or chewing their way in to make a home.
However, like with mattress covers, combine sealants with steam cleaning for the best results.
Isolating All the Infested Furniture
Isolation is perhaps the most expensive do-it-yourself solution.
You begin by making a complete assessment of your furniture, one by one, and removing the ones that you think have an infestation.
While the method might do much to improve your sleep at night. You might have recurring infestations because bed bugs live on the walls too. It would be absurd if you have to take down your walls just to control bed bugs.
A vacuum cleaner will pick out all the bedbugs crawling on the floor and furniture surfaces, but might not have any bearing on those hiding in cracks. But if you combine the method with the rest discussed here, you will get some good results.
Bed Bug Sprays
Some eco-sprays give good results when used as a follow-up to other DIY methods. You can use them to spray some bugs that survived your formidable DIY bedbug clearing operation. Like in other DIY methods, focus the spray on the carpets, bed, dresser drawers, and any other place you think you did not do a good job covering earlier.
For sustained results, keep steam cleaning your house frequently. You also have to isolate any clothing infested, which might be too expensive to replace.
DIY solutions work well, but will not be so effective for long. In addition, the effort required in running them for weeks and months can tire a senior.
Despite the efforts, you might also spend more on in-home remedies than on actually contracting an exterminator. If you live in a rented apartment, it is best to talk to your property owner to understand the rules regarding an exterminator. Otherwise, an exterminator is the best way to deal with bedbugs.