Are you aware that bed bug infestations have been increasing worldwide after a decade’s reprieve? These nasty creatures can grow in size to 7 millimeters, have a flat, oval shape and a reddish-brown color. If brown or black pepper-like flakes are found in a bed, they could very well be the fecal droppings of bed bugs. The pests also leave shed skin and eggs behind. There are a number of things you can do when you travel to ensure that bed bugs will not be biting you or members of your family.
How Do Bed Bugs Spread?
They can be found on furniture, bedding and clothing. As a result, they can hitch a ride on any number of items and be easily transferred to other locations. Since bed bugs crawl, it is not hard for them to travel from one room to other areas. If you are going to be traveling in the near future, keep in mind some of the tips listed below so you will not bring bed bugs into your home.
Use a Hard-Shelled Suitcase
By using a hard-shelled suitcase rather than a cloth one, there will be fewer seams in which bed bugs can hide. You can also place your clothing items in plastic bags that can be easily sealed. This will make it more difficult for pests to invade your clothing.
Leave Clothing Items in Your Suitcase
Rather than laying out your clothes and hanging them up in a closet, leave all of your items in your suitcase, encased in those sealable bags. In this way, you will not be exposing anything to bed bugs that can be easily taken back to your home.
Examine Your Hotel Room Carefully
Never assume that your room is clean and free of any type of infestation. Carefully check your bed and all nooks and crannies where pests can hide. Use a flashlight, if necessary. Also, check around nightstands and lamps, behind the headboard and wall hangings, and in the folds and seams of any upholstered furniture within the room. If you notice anything suspicious, report it to hotel management immediately and request a change of room, preferably one that is not near your current location. When you are assigned a different room, put it through the same close inspection.
What to Do When You Get Home
Upon your return home, unpack your suitcase outside or on a hard floor, checking carefully for any signs of bed bugs. To be certain that you are not harboring unwanted visitors, wash all clothing in hot water and dry everything on the highest setting of your dryer. Thoroughly vacuum your suitcase as well. Remember to take a shower before retiring.
What If You Do Get Bed Bugs?
Even if after all your precautionary measures you spot signs of bed bugs in your home when you return from a trip, help is at hand. The best way to take care of them is to have a pest control professional rid you of them using specially-developed insecticide for bed bugs. Do not move items where you suspect an infestation has occurred.
If you use the precautions mentioned above, you will be able to travel with less fear of a bed bug infestation.