How To Avoid Picking Up Bed Bug Hitchhikers This Summer

Family in bed

To help protect your home from being invaded by bed bugs this summer, the professionals at Witt Pest Management want to provide you with a quick refresher on these blood-feeding pests, including some tips on how to help prevent accidentally introducing them into your home during the busy summer travel season.

Bed bugs move from place to place by hitchhiking either on people or their personal belongings.

These pests do not wings and do not fly, but they are excellent at crawling and can quickly make their way into a person’s pant cuff, shoe, bag, coat, or other personal belonging that has been placed on the floor. Bed bugs can be found in just about every public places as they like to live in close proximity to their food source: human blood. Bed bugs are commonly found living in libraries, malls, movie theaters, airports, hotels, motels, and cruise ships — basically all the places where millions of people will be traveling to and from during the summer months!

It is very common to come into contact with bed bugs while traveling and then accidentally introduce them into your home upon arriving home. A bed bug infestation truly can happen to anyone, inside of any home. Despite popular belief, bed bugs don’t discriminate between dirty and clean homes to infest — all they care about is that you provide them with their blood meals.

In order to protect yourself and your home from bed bugs this season, we want to fill you in on some easy-to-remember and easy-to-execute bed bug prevention tips:

  • Keep an eye on your surroundings at all times with regards to bed bugs. Check for signs of bed bugs that include reddish-brown fecal spots and cast bed bug skins. Forgetting that bed bugs are in public places and letting your guard down for only a moment can cause these bloodsuckers to jump onto your clothing and travel home with you.
  • While traveling, be on the lookout for bed bugs, know what bed bugs and their signs look like; inspect the public areas that you will be spending time in such as airports, buses, taxis, hotels, and motels for signs of bed bugs.
  • Before bringing your luggage and personal belongings into a hotel room, motel room, or even a room at a relative’s house, thoroughly inspect it for bed bugs using a flashlight. Inspect mattresses, box springs, bedding, headboards, and other furniture for bed bugs.
  • While staying away from your home, keep your suitcases, bags, purses, and other belongings up off of the ground, and only unpack the things that you will be using/wearing that day; keep items not being used in sealed plastic bags.
  • Upon returning home from traveling, immediately unpack suitcases, preferably outside in a garage area. Wash all clothing taken on the trip, whether it was worn or not, on the highest heat setting.
  • Before bringing your luggage inside and storing it away for your next trip, vacuum it out thoroughly and sanitize it.
  • At the library, inspect any books you’re interested in before checking them out. Look in the spines and around the edges; if you see signs of bed bugs (or their eggs!) leave this book at the library- you may also want to let the librarians know what you’ve found, so no one else is exposed to these pests.
  • Keep children from sitting or lying on the ground in public places like airports, shopping centers, and hotel or motel rooms.
  • Bring a small LED flashlight with you wherever you go. You can use this to help you look for bed bugs and their eggs; a flashlight can be especially useful in dark movie theaters.

Bed bugs are extremely invasive pests and know how to crawl onto people and their belongings without being noticed. Despite taking all the necessary precautions against these nuisance pests this summer, you may still experience problems with bed bugs, which is where the professionals come in! If you discover that bed bugs have been introduced into your home, contact the bed bug control professionals at Witt Pest Management immediately. We can provide the inspection and treatment services needed to completely eliminate them from your home. Contact us today to learn more about our comprehensive bed bug control services.

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