April 10, 2011

Something's been bugging me

I always thought 'don't let the bed bugs bite' was just a figure of speech; until, a few short days after we moved I woke up and saw enormous red welts on my left forearm.

Bedbugs, everyone kept saying. So I turned to everybody's favorite Dr. Google.

Thank you, Dr. Google, now I need to shower with a steel brush and lye soap.

Also? I'd like to set fire to all our mattresses.

Fast forward until the beginning of March. My dr has assured me they are not bedbug bites, we have determined Turtle is having an odd eczema flareup and Frog is being slathered with eczema cream every time I can catch her (longest run on sentence EVER!).

Then! FIL catches a bug, on Turtle's bed. Hubs squishes one on his hat and I catch one crawling around on the back of my neck.

Now thanks to an hour or two with Dr. Google I now know way more about bed bugs I could ever possibly want to!  I thought I'd share a few bits of my newfound knowledge with y'all.

10. If you get even the SLIGHTEST impression that you have bed bugs? Act like you have bed bugs. Get traps, start washing ALL your textiles.

9. Mattress encasements are your best friends. Don't expect the dust mites ones to help if you already have a bed bug problem.  You need ones with a polyurethane inner lining with a cotton outer lining.  This will keep any live bed bugs IN your bed and off you.

8. Bed bugs can survive for over a year without feeding.

7. Bed bugs are the size of an apple seed.  You can most definitely see them.  Even the younger stages of larvae are visible.  The only thing you won't be able to see easily are the eggs.

6. Outlets? Baseboards? Bed frames? Bed bugs are NOT picky about where they live.  As long as it's dark and they won't be disturbed during the day? Consider them moved in.

5. While their preferred range is 15 feet of their desired food source (that would be my kids), they will travel up to 100 feet to feed.

4. There are trained scent dogs (beagles!) who can detect bed bugs.  While a massive infestation is detectable by us scent deaf humans, scent dogs will detect ANY size infestation.

3. A massive bedbug infestation smells like raspberries.

2. Bug sprays don't work.

1. Preparing for a bed bug steam treatment is a pain in the rear. It's also a big annoying mess since you have to inspect and bag up every item in your home.  Yes, even storage areas and all bookcases.

To avoid making your skin crawl I decided to not share any of the images I looked at last week.  If you REALLY want to look at bed bugs, Dr. Google has some LOVELY images for you to browse.


  1. This is precisely why we carefully check the mattresses when we stay in hotels! Overall I think I prefer snakes *shudders*

  2. I'll take the snakes too! At least those you can get other critters to kill!