As a child, my parents would tuck me in tight at night and tell me not to let the bed bugs bite. And when I was really young, this worked! I believed that if I ventured out from beneath the covers, that tiny creatures hiding in the darkness would gnaw at my flesh. Of course with maturity, I realized the extent of their manipulation and that it was all part of an effective strategy designed to scare me into staying in bed and out of their hair. However, as national news stories have recently reported, particularly in Austin bed bugs are indeed real world monsters, infesting hotels and homes throughout our cities and neighborhoods and they do in fact dwell primarily where we lay our heads to sleep.
What is a Bed Bug?
Bed bugs are reddish brown insects that are approximately the size of an apple seed. They are parasitic and feed solely on the blood of warm blooded humans and animals. Bed bugs are primarily active at night and nourish on their hosts undetectably. While neither the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nor the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have raised bed bugs to the threat level of other disease carrying pests, their bites do cause discomfort and irritation. Symptoms include allergic conditions, such as skin rashes as well as physiological effects. Texas has had an epidemic of bed bugs, ranking as the seventh worst state with reported cases. In Austin bed bugs have been especially troublesome specifically in apartment complexes. In these units, which typically house many families, one lone bed bug incidence can turn into a full-blown, property wide outbreak.
How to Free Your Home of Bed Bugs
Bed bugs were for all intents and purposes eradicated in the United States due to the effectiveness of powerful insecticides such as DDT. But with globalization, where visitors and goods are regularly coming in from countries where bed bugs had not been treated, the United States has experienced resurgence. DDT has been outlawed due to safety concerns and as we are presently without an alternative to combat them, we are left to find other methods to deal with bed bugs. Austin pest control professionals have a variety of weapons in their arsenal to win the war. Safety and environmentally friendly in addition to being efficient and efficacious are tantamount in preventing and eradicating bed bugs. One such method is by utilizing specially trained dogs to sniff out bed bug populations. A dog is brought into the compromised living space, is able to quickly, accurately and cost-effectively detect the bed bugs so they can be dealt with accordingly. An expert then can eliminate the bed bugs with an eco-friendly technique called thermal remediation. In this process, heat is used to increase the bed bug infested area to 130 degree Fahrenheit for three hours. This process is safe and equally important; it is proven to be 97% effective in eliminating bed bugs. That is peace of mind for a good night’s rest.