Traveling With Bedbugs in America is Becoming a War!

Across America from Los Angeles to New York, from North to South and everywhere in between, people are finding themselves traveling with bedbugs.

Do you know bedbugs are causing a major stir in the travel industry – especially beware of bedbugs in hotels, motels, and cruise ships?

These little blood sucking bugs are invading America. College dorms, nursing homes, apartment buildings, schools, churches, movie theaters, cruise ships, subways, fire stations, and yes the hotel industry.

Did you hear? – Even such high end shops as Victoria’s Secret have been invaded by Cimex lectularius!

Yes these little vampires are messing with sleep, vacations, and just about every industry except exterminators. That includes the Internal Revenue Service right in Philadelphia; that is according to the head of the union of the chapter working at IRS on Roosevelt Boulevard.

Bedbugs feed mainly on the blood of humans at night when people are asleep. As they feed, they inject a salivary secretion into the wound that often causes the skin to itch and become swollen. Scratching causes sores that may become infected.

You might wonder why this is happening in clean America. In an effort to make the environment safer, you might recall that we have banned DDT and other pesticides that helped control bedbugs over the last 50 years.

During the first National Bed Bug Summit of the Environmental Protection Agency, Mike Potter, a University of Kentucky entomologist, pronounced that the bedbug problem is the most challenging pest problem of our generation.

You might ask how does an insect that cannot jump or carry any known disease be so difficult to control. Well, bedbugs can survive one year without food, which is human blood. A single female can lay several hundred eggs in her year of life.

The catch is that the egg sacs are almost clear and stick to anything, and cannot be penetrated by available pesticides. And these little suckers can start reproducing within a month.

Guess what the big new weapon is. It is 120 degree heat. Research has shown nymphs, adults, and eggs are cooked in just a few minutes. Various companies are using heat to eradicate bedbugs. Some companies place bed and furniture, into a truck and use heaters and fans to cook the insects and eggs. Even dogs are being trained to detect even a single egg.

All in all, eradication is very expensive and not easy to accomplish.

So what can you do while traveling, to prevent taking these critters home with you?

– Be able to recognise them. Adult bedbugs are reddish brown, about a quarter inch long and look somewhat like ticks. Nymphs are smaller and lighter in color. Eggs are whitish and the size of a speck of dust and hard to see.

– Know what they can do to you. Although some people have no reaction, the bites may take days to show a reaction similar to itchy mosquito bites, welts, a rash, or bumps with red dots.

– Know where bedbugs hide. Tiny dark stains or molted shells in bedding are signs of an infestation. However, remember, you may not be able to see them at all.

-Inspect hotel mattresses.

-If you have been shopping in thrift stores, beware of secondhand furniture or clothing.

Things to Do After Traveling:

-After traveling, inspect your luggage and backpacks.

-Put dirty clothes in a tightly sealed bag until they can be laundered.

-Put clean clothes in the dryer on high heat.

If you do accidentally end up traveling with bedbugs and end up taking them home with you, don’t simply throw away infested beds or furniture. Check with a pest control expert to see whether the items can be treated and what the proper disposal should be, if treatment is not possible.