‘Don’t let the bed bugs bite’ – Fenton Tri County Times

Once just a catchy bedtime phrase, Dont let the bed bugs bite is taking on a new urgency as this pesky blood-sucking nighttime bug is making a comeback in the U.S.

According to reports from http://www.michigan.gov, pest control company Orkin says more people are now being affected by bed bugs in the U.S. than ever before. Nearly all pest professionals nationwide have treated bed bugs in the past year.

Youre also more likely to find bed bugs at home than at a hotel. The top three places where pest professionals report finding bed bugs are apartments and condominiums (95 percent), single-family homes (93 percent) and hotels/motels (75 percent). Theyre also found in nursing homes, college dorms, offices, schools and daycare centers, hospitals, public transportation and more.

Its a major problem for multi-family housing and hotels and motels, said Gary Offenbacher, a property manager in southeast Michigan, who was part of a Bed Bug Task Force for the state of Michigan.

Detroit has been named No. 7 on the most bed bug infested city in the U.S. list, along with Grand Rapids-Battle Creek-Kalamazoo at No. 29.

Thats the bad news. The good news is that bed bugs dont carry diseases, and they are very treatable, according to Offenbacher.

Bed bugs are small, brownish, flattened insects that feed on the blood of people where they sleep. All they eat is blood, said Offenbacher. Getting rid of them is all about isolating them from their host.

Normally they are brought into a home or facility in furniture, household objects or luggage. Once they have established themselves in a home, they can be difficult and costly to get rid of.

Theyre not known to transmit diseases, but are considered a nuisance or vermin, and therefore a public health concern, according to Michigan.gov/emergingdiseases.

Theyre like head lice, said Offenbacher. People freak out about it, but its very treatable. Theres no need to be embarrassed. Being sanitary has nothing to do with it.

Bed bugs can be difficult to detect because of their small size and ability to survive up to a year without feeding. Theyre about the size of an apple seed when fully grown and can easily hide around the seams of a mattress, behind headboards and in cracks and crevices, usually within a 5-foot radius of the bed.

The first signs of a bed bug infestation are often the bed bugs themselves, or small dark stains bed bugs can leave behind.

Its important to check for signs of bed bugs regularly, and make this check part of your regular sheet-changing routine.

If you find or suspect you have bed bugs in your home or on your mattress, it is recommended that you call a pest management professional. For do-it-yourself eradication methods, check Michigan.gov/emergingdiseases.

To help detect and

prevent bed bugs . . .

Inspect your home for signs of bed bugs regularly. Check where they hide during the day, including mattress seams and behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets and picture frames.

Decrease clutter around your home to make bed bug inspections and detection much easier.

Inspect all secondhand furniture before bringing it inside your home.

Dry potentially infested bed linens, curtains and stuffed animals on the hottest temperature allowed for the fabric.

When you travel, remember the acronym, SLEEP:

S Survey the hotel room for signs of an infestation. Look for black or brown spots on any furniture.

L Lift and look in bed bug hiding spots: the mattress, box spring, bed skirt and other furniture, as well as behind baseboards, pictures and even torn wallpaper.

E Elevate luggage away from the bed and wall. The safest place is in the bathroom.

E Examine your luggage while repacking and once you return home from a trip.

P Place all dryer-safe clothing from your luggage into the dryer for at least 15 minutes at the highest setting after you return home.

Source: Orkin

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‘Don’t let the bed bugs bite’ – Fenton Tri County Times

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