Sunday, August 23, 2015

Why Do-it-yourself won’t work for bed bugs !

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When people get bed bugs and they take the affordable route and try to get rid of the problem themselves, they often make the problem worse and the bugs spread, according to one pest control expert.

“It’s unfortunate that a lot of people who are underprivileged don’t have the means (to pay for treatment) and there’s a social stigma to bed bugs,” said Mike Pierce, branch manager at Orkin, a pest control company in an interview.

He said he has experienced a higher bed bug-related call volume recently — the last 60 days in particular — in the Vermont area. The call volume has been particularly heavy for single and multi-tenant apartments.

According to the Vermont Department of Health there been an increase in bed bugs in the past few years, not just in Vermont but across the country. In the state of Vermont, there’s no regulation making landlords responsible for the cost of treating a bed bug infestation.

A full removal with a pest control company can cost more than $1,000. The Vermont Department of Health recommends that homeowners or landlords hire licensed pest control professionals to get rid of bed bugs, instead of attempting to take care of the problem themselves.

“A lot of people resort to over-the-counter applications,” said Pierce. This, he said, can result in a worse infestation. “When someone goes and buys a (bug) bomb at the hardware store or other products over the counter, and try doing it themselves, that’s when they cause the bugs to spread,” he said.

This is because bed bugs become resistant to treatments.

Pierce said that Orkin has changed its product and treatment styles many times since 1999 because of the insects’ ability to become resistant to chemicals and treatments.

Right now, Orkin conducts a combination on heat and chemical treatment.

According to the Vermont Department of Health, people carry bed bugs into their homes unknowingly, in infested luggage, furniture, bedding or clothing.

Bed bugs may travel between apartments through small crevices and cracks in walls and floors.

Pregnant females are often the ones that latch onto people’s belongings, according to Pierce. Because they often hide in or around beds and other furniture, they are difficult to see.

The Vermont Department of Health warns you may notice itchy skin welts or blister-like inflammations, which can be similar to hives.

Sometimes the insects are also visible, as are small bloodstains from crushed insects or dark spots from their droppings.

Pierce said prevention is key when it comes to bed bugs. The Vermont Department of Health suggest washing clothing and inspecting luggage for bed bugs immediately after returning from a trip.

They also say furniture should be inspected before bringing it into your home and that discarded bed frames, mattresses, box springs, or upholstered furniture should never be brought home

When throwing away infested furniture, the Vermont Department of Health suggests making it unusable by disassembling and breaking and to attach a sign explaining it’s infested with bed bugs. 

For those who cannot afford bed bug treatment, Pierce said Orkin offers a six-month payment plan. People do have to qualify, but he said the required credit score is relatively low.

“We try to make it affordable because it is an impact that most people don’t expect,” he said. He also said he knows of people who assist with low-interest loans for that particular situation.

Source: timesargus.com

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