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How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs

A bed bug infestation can be a real pain, but we’ll show you how to identify, treat and prevent them in this handy guide. From prepping to spraying, we’ll show you how to eliminate these pesky critters easily and effectively.

Skill Level: Beginner
Time:
  1. Step 1 Identify the Early Signs of Bed Bugs

    A person checks a bed sheet for signs of bed bugs.

    Bed bugs are wingless and dark brown in colour. They’re smaller than a ladybug, flat and oval-shaped.

    Since bed bugs like to burrow into furniture and bedding, noticing signs of them can be challenging. Some of the signs are a sweet, musty odour, rust-coloured spots on your bedding or mattress and bite marks on your arms or hands arranged in lines or clusters.

    Heating an area can make bed bugs come out from hiding. Use bed bug traps to capture bugs around your bed and prevent them from crossing up into your bedding and furniture.

  2. Step 2 Prepare Your Room for Bed Bug Treatment

    A person vacuums their bed prior to applying a bed bug killer.

    To prep your area for bed bug removal, you’ll first need to clean all your carpets, bedding, curtains, clothing and any other items that may have been infested. Be sure to tidy up clutter on the ground and throw out whatever you can. You’ll also need to seal up open areas like electrical outlets and baseboards.

  3. Step 3 Control the Infestation

    A close up of a bed bug.

    Treat the room using insecticides labelled for use to kill bed bugs and be sure they contain ingredients labelled as IGRs, or insect growth regulators. Be sure to follow all label instructions and let the home air out completely before people and pets go back inside.

    Use aerosols and liquid bed bug sprays to treat the cracks and crevices where bed bugs hide. Be sure to get it around bed frames, floorboards, mattresses and box springs.

  4. Step 4 Protect Your Home from Bed Bugs

    A person puts a mattress cover on their mattress.

    Prevention is always better than treatment. To help prevent a bed bug infestation, use a bed bug mattress protector and consider using bed bug monitors under beds. Keep your furniture away from doors and windows. If you’ve got bed bugs in your building or near your home, be sure to use a perimeter insect control to help keep them away.

  5. Step 5 Prevent Bed Bugs While Traveling

    A person holding their luggage inspects their hotel room for bedbugs.

    Help prevent bed bugs from infesting your luggage by keeping your clothes and other items in your bags and by keeping your bags off the floor. Be sure to inspect your room and surrounding area for signs of bed bugs. Bed bugs flock to the heat and carbon dioxide we emit as humans, so avoiding them altogether is important.

  6. Step 6 Treating Bed Bug Bites

    A child has bed bug bites on their legs.

    Bed bug bites are harmless and nothing to worry about. Be sure to wash the affected area with soap and water and apply an anti-itch cream if the area is itchy. Allergy pills can help if the itch is really bad. If a serious allergic reaction occurs, be sure to see a doctor immediately.

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