How to Deal with Bed Bugs

Headline-making bed bugs are no joke. They spread easily, are experts at hiding, and feed on blood, often while you sleep.

If You Have Bed Bugs, Don't Despair - Here Are Some Tips for Managing Them

Bed bugs are flat, oval, reddish-brown, and only about 1/4 inch long. Clues that these pests are in the home are little black dots (fecal spots) of excrement and cast-off skins found in mattress seams, corners of drawers, or even behind pictures on the wall, and the area surrounding the bed.

Think you have bed bugs? Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Bed Bug Traps are perfect for home or travel. These pesticide-free traps can tell you in less than an hour whether you have a bed bug problem by luring bugs with patented pheromone technology and capturing them in the trap. Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Bed Bug Traps are just one part of a complete set of products from Ortho for treating for bed bugs.

  • Tumble-dry bedding and clothing on high heat for two full cycles. For delicate items, dry on two cycles at the highest heat the fabric can tolerate.
  • Gently brush hard surfaces like furniture, drawers, and bed frames to remove any eggs. Dispose of the eggs in the same way as noted above.
  • Vacuum mattresses, furniture, baseboards, floorboards, crown molding, picture frames, rugs, and carpeting. Empty whatever you vacuum up into a plastic bag, seal it, double-bag, and put it into an outdoor garbage bin.
  • After cleaning, apply fast-acting, long-lasting Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Dual-Action Bed Bug Killer on and around bed frames, headboards, the tufts and sides of mattresses, drapes, luggage, and anywhere else you suspect bed bugs may be lurking (including other places family members tend to relax, such as the couch). Available in 18-ounce and 3-ounce cans that are perfect for travel, this spray even kills bugs that are resistant to pyrethroids.
  • Apply dry, odorless Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Bed Bug, Flea & Tick Killer Powder to cracks and crevices (such as electrical outlets and behind picture frames).
  • Quickly treat large areas like carpets, closets, and baseboards with non-staining Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Bed Bug, Flea & Tick Killer, which also kills pyrethroid-resistant bed bugs and controls bed bugs for up to 2 weeks on carpeted surfaces.
  • Bed bugs can be very hard to control since they are so good at hiding and can survive months without a blood meal. To check whether they're still present, place Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Bed Bug Traps around the bed to lure any remaining bugs from their hiding places. The patented pheromone lure works in an hour or less to draw them into the strong glue trap for detection and containment. Each trap has a handy viewing window so you can tell right away if any bugs are still hiding. If so, repeat the steps above, or, call a professional.
  • With all products, be sure to read and follow the directions on the label.

Here Are Some Steps to Take to Help Keep Bed Bugs From Returning:

  • Caulk cracks and crevices, especially around baseboards and decorative molding, so bed bugs can't hide in them or use them to travel from one room to another.
  • Wrap mattresses and box springs in mattress encasements to keep new bed bugs out, and kill any stray ones trapped inside.
  • Keep beds away from the walls, and don't allow bedspreads and blankets to touch the floor.
  • Pick up loose items and clear clutter so bed bugs have fewer places to hide.
  • Inspect and clean furniture, mattresses, box springs, and bed frames before bringing them into your home. If possible, avoid purchasing used furniture.
  • Check the seams of your clothing (a favorite hiding place) and luggage before bringing it back into your home after traveling.

Here's What to Do if You're Traveling:

  • Place your luggage in the bathtub or bathroom of your hotel room. Bed bugs are less effective at traveling up slippery surfaces like tile.
  • Inspect the room for any signs of infestation, such as fecal spots and cast-off skins.
  • Activate the Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Bed Bug Traps and place it under the bed.
  • Leave the room for an hour and check the trap upon your return.
  • If signs of bed bugs appear, push down the window of the trap and spray your items with Ortho┬« Home Defense┬« Dual-Action Bed Bug Killers. (The 3-ounce can is just the right size for travel.)
  • Notify the hotel immediately of the infestation.

Armed with these tips and techniques, you will soon be able to rest easy (literally!).

You: 1, bed bugs: 0.