Bed bugs are an extremely difficult pest to get rid of. Is there a season that is worse for bed bugs than others? While there is no official bed bug season, a recent study published in the Journal of Medical Entomology shows a peak in bed bug activity in August and a low in February. Other studies have shown that peak season for bed bugs runs from June through October. Bed bugs appear more prevalent in warmer months likely due to an increase in travel and hotel visits during spring break and summer vacation, as well as college students moving into dorms at the beginning of the school year. More movement, more travel and more activity lead to an increased opportunity for bed bugs to hitch a ride on luggage, people and pets. This increase in travel also allows them the opportunity to spread very quickly, establishing new infestations practically overnight.
Bed bugs have been found in homes, college dorms, nursing homes, schools, hospitals, office buildings, hotels, daycares, hospitals, public transportation, and even planes.
Even though bed bug season appears to peak in the warmer months, they still remain active year round. That’s why it is important to be vigilant when traveling or hosting out of town visitors regardless of the time of year. Here are some tips to help prevent bed bugs from infesting your home.
- Use a flashlight and magnifying glass to thoroughly inspect your accommodations including:
- In the seams of chairs and couches and in between cushions
- In the folds of curtains
- In drawer joints
- In electrical outlets and appliances
- Under loose wallpaper and behind wall hangings
- At the junction of walls and ceilings
- In the heads of screws
- On mattresses and box springs, especially along seams and edges
- Along the bed frame
- In cracks in plaster and wallpaper seams
- In luggage or boxes stored in infested rooms
- In objects on nightstands including clocks and magazines or books
- In crevices of smoke detectors and phones
- In door hinges and window and door moldings
- Reduce clutter in your home.
- Vacuum suitcases when returning from a trip.
- Routinely check linens and mattresses for signs of bed bugs.
- Make sure to also regularly check areas where your pets sleep for signs of bed bugs.
- Bring a large trash bag to store your suitcase in during travel.
- Bring a small flashlight and magnifying glass with you when traveling to help inspect your accommodations.
- Thoroughly inspect any used furniture before bringing them into your home.
- Check the Bed Bug Registry for your travel accommodations to see if they have any recent reports of bed bugs.
- Immediately wash your clothes in hot water and dry them on high heat after returning from travel.
If you suspect you have a bed bug infestation, contact a professional bed bug control company who can provide you with a thorough inspection and set you up with a comprehensive treatment and prevention plan going forward.
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