Bed bugs can go unnoticed in your bedroom for quite some time. It’s only when you start seeing signs of infestation that you realize what you’re dealing with.
These signs can vary from regular bed bug bites or even dead bed bugs in and around your bedroom.
These tiny insects can multiply rapidly. If you don’t deal with them with all seriousness. They can pretty much make your bedroom inhabitable to sleep.
Deciding to get professional help for bed bugs is the starting point. You need to have as much information available as possible about the process to make it safer and more efficient in doing its job.
There are many frequently asked questions that people get confused about often. Many ask if they should mop after bed bug treatment at all?
If yes, how long should they wait before they do that.
We discuss all of these questions and more in this article.
Bed Bug Treatment Options
When it comes to bed bugs. They are pretty hard to kill. Mostly due to the fact that they are tiny and can hide in the most unnoticeable places
But also because they have many stages of life. From an egg to an adult you can face different kinds of infestation. Each of these require a different kind of strategy that involves the amount of treatment, the severity and and the budget.
Heat treatment is the most efficient way of killing termites in one treatment. The concept of heat treatment is pretty simple.
Adult Bed bugs are naturally built to sustain temperatures lesser than 119 fahrenheit. Their eggs however can survive temperatures greater than 125 fahrenheit.
Your professional exterminator heats your house to extreme temperatures (130-160 fahrenheit) so that bed bugs cannot survive. This is done by the use of giant electric heaters and fans.
In many cases, your exterminator would tent your house to keep the structure insulated. The extreme temperature is maintained for a good 30-60 minutes which is more than enough to put an end on bed bugs.
- One treatment ensures eradication
- Perfect for large infestations
- House is far for use immediately after the treatment
- Doesn’t protect against future infestations
- Is usually recommended for attics and separate areas in your house
- Preparation Time
When dealing with chemicals it is always recommended to take the advice of a professional. Chemicals are meant to be toxic for pests, but can also harm humans and pets.
Your professional exterminator would be able to pick a chemical treatment based on your house structure and the severity of infestation.
These chemical treatments are generally composed of three different components:
Contact Insecticides: These are the toxic chemicals that kill bed bugs on contact
Residual Chemicals: These act as a barrier against future infestations. These are the repelling agents that make sure you don’t have to face bed bugs again.
The Dust: It is used to fill up all the cracks in the future and walls where bed bugs can potentially hide in the future.
- Protections Against Future Attacks: The biggest benefit of using chemical treatment is that they protect you from future infestation. The better residual chemicals your exterminator uses. The better protected you will be against future attacks.
- Efficient in Killing Bugs: Chemical treatments are an efficient way to get rid of termites. Their efficacy however remains limited to the area that has been treated.
- Budget Friendly: Chemical treatments are generally way cheaper than heat treatments and can also be used as a DIY option.
- Residual Chemicals: When chemicals are used in your home. They take time to absorb and to start getting in contact with bed bugs. The whole process takes more time than heat treatment.
- Follow-Up Treatments: The biggest problem with chemical treatments is that they’re not effective on bed bug eggs. So you can definitely expect a follow-up appointment with your exterminator. Just to kill the bugs that weren’t born yet in the previous visit.
- The Preparation: When using chemicals, the success of the treatment depends on how well it gets in contact with bed bugs. You need to remove as much furniture and household items to make sure bed bugs get exposed to chemicals.
Do You Need to Move Out of Your House for Bed Bug Treatment
Heat treatment requires a lot of caution and preparation on tenants’ end. You need to be careful of anything that can be damaged by heat.
You have to move out your pets, plants and any living thing (except bed bugs) you have in the house.
Since heat treatment can raise temperatures upto 150 °F. You definitely need to move out of the house to save yourself from injuries. These temperatures are maintained for a good 6 to 8 hours to ensure efficacy.
Chemical treatments in your house can be location specific. Wherever pesticides are sprayed on the property. While the treatment is going on. You can be required to leave the house temporarily for 3-4 hours.
Liquid chemical treatments need time to absorb in floors, furniture and other objects. Until they are dried out. You need to stay away from them. ,
Recommended Read: How long After Fumigation is it Safe for pets
Bed Bug Treatment Preparation Checklist
For a successful treatment with no lesser chances of future infestation. It is important that you prepare well for the treatment process.
Here are the preparation guidelines for bed bug treatment. You can check an extensive list of precautions here.
- Remove all clutter, Most pest control companies would NOT conduct a treatment if excessive stuff is present in the location.
- Remove all paintings from walls, empty all drawers and remove all electric wall plates
- Vacuum the area before the treatment.
- Remove all beddings and pillows and wash them along with any other laundy that might be in contact with bed bugs.
- Remove plants and pets from the area.
Things to Do After a Bed Bug Treatment
Buy Mattress Encasements: You should protect your mattresses and pillows with encasements and covers. This ensures that any bed bugs that survived the treatment do not get out. Once trapped the bed bugs would die of starvation.
Open Windows and Start Fans: After the treatment is complete, you should air out the area as much as possible. This ensures any excessive chemicals or fumigants in the air are ventured out. This also helps in drying out liquid chemicals.
Wait for Treatment to Complete: Do not enter the house within 4 hours of treatment. Pesticides are capable of making you sick. If anyone in your household feels sick after entering a treated house. Immediately contact a health professional.
Reinspection: Keep an open eye for signs of bed bugs. Bed Bugs can also travel to different rooms during a treatment, if proper procedures are not followed. If you see spot signs of infestation. Contact your exterminator immediately.
When can I Mop After Bed Bug Treatment?
Liquid chemicals used in household treatments are usually safe for human contact after they’ve dried up. In the US, highly toxic materials that can pose danger to human life are not registered and allowed.
The exact guidelines vary depending on the chemical used. The label on the product should guide you if it is safe to leave after application.
For most chemical treatments, you can mop your floor after 2-3 weeks to let them do their job.
However, these guidelines can differ depending on the products. So you should definitely consult your exterminator for exact guidelines.
Can Follow-Up Treatment Be Required
When using heat treatment, The kill ratio for bed bugs is 100%. When adequate temperatures and proper preparations are provided. Heat treatment could be the only thing that you need to eradicate any existing infestation.
However, this process does not guarantee future protection. Heat treatment has no mechanism of repelling future bed bugs that might come to your house except when used in conjunction with chemical treatments.
Chemical treatments have a really efficacy rate with bed bugs. But most likely, you would have to schedule a second appointment for bed bugs. Since many bed bugs can manage to stay away from the chemical in the first attempt.
Can I sleep in my bed after bed bug treatment?
You can start sleeping on your bed after bed bug treatment as soon as the chemicals have dried up. This should not take more than 5 hours. Mattress covers are also highly recommended to keep any existing termites trapped within the mattress.