Bring Home Memories Not Bed Bugs This Holiday Season
As Thanksgiving and Christmas draw near, Schendel Pest Services reminds all travelers of the risk of bringing home bed bugs from their holiday travels. The National Pest Management Association has noted a 71% increase in reports of bed bugs since 2001.
One reason that bed bugs pose such a problem for travelers is their keen ability to “hitchhike.” Bed bugs can travel easily – from beds to sofa cushions, from room to room and even home via suitcases.
The current bed bug infestation is more prevalent on the coasts, so it’s especially important for those traveling east or west to be very cautious so as to avoid bringing bed bugs to their homes in the Midwest. Once an infestation develops, bed bugs are extremely difficult to remove and require the experience of a pest professional to eliminate an infestation.
It is important for travelers to understand the prevalence of bed bugs. “Although many associate bed bugs with sanitation levels, this is simply a myth,” states Dr. Joel Perez-Mendoza, Schendel entomologist. “Bed bugs are VERY transient and are often found in other areas besides the bed. Vigilance is critical, especially as we know that a five-star resort can be as susceptible to bed bugs as a hostel. And family homes are vulnerable to infestations as well.”
“Bed bugs are elusive, nocturnal pests that thrive on blood.” continues Perez-Mendoza. “While these pests do not transmit diseases, bed bugs inject an anesthetic-like liquid that numbs the skin as they bite, leaving their victims undisturbed. It is only when people awake that they find unexplained, itchy red welts covering their bodies.”
Schendel offers these tips to prevent bed bugs from returning home with travelers:
At hotels, pull back the sheets and inspect the mattress seams, particularly at the corners, for telltale stains or spots. If you see anything suspect, change rooms/establishments immediately.
Thoroughly inspect the entire room before unpacking, including behind the headboard and in sofas/chairs. If any pests are spotted, change rooms/establishments immediately.
After traveling, inspect your suitcases before bringing them into the house. Vacuum them thoroughly and wash all of your clothes in hot water.
About Schendel Pest: Schendel Pest Services has provided complete pest management services to commercial, industrial, and residential clients since 1947. Schendel’s corporate office is located in Topeka, Kansas and Schendel provides services to customers in five states – Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. Additionally, Schendel Pest Services is a partner with Copesan Services, which enables the company to sell and service commercial accounts on a national basis.