Early detection. I really can’t stress it enough. The earlier you detect a problem the quicker you can eliminate it and the less it will cost you. It means EVERYTHING!
The question is what does “early detection” mean and how do you go about finding bed bugs in your home as early as possible. To me, your investment should depend upon your risk. Risk factors for bed bugs are:
- Purchasing used furniture
- Refurbishing or taking in discarded furniture
- Live in a multi-family housing setting such as apartments or condos
- Frequent guests
If you don’t partake in any of the above risk factors then your investment probably needs to be low. Low-risk members of society I would suggest being aware of what a bed bugs looks like, that they commonly infest beds and couches (so if you see bugs on your bed or couch it should be a concern) and that they bite at night so waking up with bites should raise a red flag. Obviously it’s always good to perform a quick inspection of your bed (especially the bottom of the box spring) once every few weeks or months but the odds you introduce bed bugs without any of the above risk factors is very low. How to Inspect a Bed For Bed Bugs: insert BBTV on bed inspection here
On the flipside, the more of the above risks you partake in should increase your awareness and investment of bed bugs. If you partake in any of the above risks and your concerned about bed bugs I suggest educating yourself on their appearance, common infestation points and conduct inspections once a month to identify infestations early on. Other items to consider are encasing your bedding in bed bug approved mattress and box spring encasements. Not only will they protect your investment but they will also make bed bugs easier to identify if they are introduced.
Lastly you should always consider installing bed bug monitors. We’ve worked extensively with interception devices under the legs of beds and couches as well as monitors under and around beds. Many of these devices will detect 90% or better or all infestations within 2 weeks of installation and can be left under and around the legs to help monitor for bed bugs moving forward. If you purchase an interception device with an open trap area be aware that many of them need to be cleaned monthly to eliminate dust build-up with will eventually reduce their effectiveness. Follow any and all manufacturer directions in regards to their maintenance. There are others that are designed so that the trap area does not collect dust and we suggest that you always perform research to determine which device will best fit your home and lifestyle.
The bottom line is that early detection is the most important factor when we talk about reducing the cost of services as well as how long it takes you to eliminate a problem. The sooner you find the issue, the cheaper and easier it is to solve. In addition to inspecting your home on your own you should always consider hiring a professional to inspect the house to help you determine if bed bugs are present and if so, what the next steps should be.
Due to the success we’ve had with monitors to detect bed bug infestations we designed several ourselves which include the BlackOut Bed Bug Detector and SenSci Volcano bed bug monitor as well as the SenSci Activ bed bug lure. We always recommend you perform research on the different options that are available and which best fits your home and lifestyle.