Orkin

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Ask the Orkin Man

Are there over-the-counter treatments for bed bugs?

Question: What over-the-counter treatment can I buy to prevent and get rid of bugs?

 

ANSWER: Preventing bed bugs is mostly a matter of inspection (as opposed to buying treatment products). While there are products on the market that are sold to prevent bed bugs when traveling, there is not much data on their effectiveness.

When you go from one place to another, check your luggage. Bed bugs are notorious hitchhikers. They can crawl into a suitcase in one city and infest a home or apartment in another city. They are easily transported in backpacks, gym bags and briefcases. Some preventive measures could include the following:

  • Inspect the room where you will be staying before bringing your luggage in. Look for signs of bed bug activity such as ink spots on the mattress, bed skirts, etc.
  • Live out of your suitcase; don’t put your clothing in the drawers.
  • Bag your dirty clothing in plastic bags that can be sealed and leave the bags undisturbed until you return home and are able to properly launder the clothes.
  • Do not bring pillows, blankets or other linens from your home.
  • After you return home, inspect your luggage for any signs of activity.

Proper bed bug control can be achieved only through a comprehensive treatment. This treatment consists of various phases, from a very detailed inspection to follow-up inspections and treatments. It is best to seek a professional to assist you in this. Call Orkin if you suspect any issues with this pesky and difficult-to-treat insect.

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