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12 Practical Methods Of Getting Rid Of Pesky Bed Bugs Once And For All

Bed bugs – ugh! These small, red/dark brown pests are parasites that are very troublesome to get rid of once an infestation sets in. They are extremely well hidden from the naked eye and live on your clothes, upholstery, bed linen, corners of the bed, and even curtains. So they need to be dealt with extreme caution, so that there are no bedbugs at all.

An effective treatment of bed bugs means the complete destruction of both the eggs and the bugs. These parasites are mostly active at night, making it all that more difficult to deal with them. So you need to completely sanitize the house, including disinfecting the furniture, clothes, upholstery, and mattresses to get rid of them, once and for all.


Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Not only do these parasites wreak havoc on your possessions, they do so on your person as well. Bed bugs bite, causing itching, rashes, and even blisters on the affected areas. Just thinking about these suckers in your bed can give you a sleepless night. These creepy, crawly pests make it hard for you to get a good night’s sleep. Yuck!

The first solution when it comes to getting rid of bed bugs is to call the professional pest control people. However, before you do that, you can try some of these natural home remedies for bed bugs, that are as effective as the professional ones, if not more so. Since these remedies are all natural, they won’t have any chemicals that could prove harmful for your health.

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1. Wash all fabrics

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Wash all clothes or items that have come in contact with these parasites like bed linens, bedspreads, shirts, skirts, curtains, etc., in boiling hot water. Bed bugs are highly sensitive to heat, and exposing them to it will effectively kill them. This kills the bed bugs, thereby leaving only the clothes sans the parasites. Another step you can follow this washing is to dry these same fabrics in high heat. When these fabrics come out of the machine, they should be very hot to the touch everywhere, including the underside of collars, behind the buttons, inside the pockets, etc.,

If you can wash the fabric, wash them – be if a piece of luggage, pillow cases, pillows, bed netting, dressing, curtains, etc., Be very meticulous in washing all the fabrics. Once you’ve washed and dried them, don’t pack it away just yet. Keep them very loose. Only when you’re sure that you’ve got every last bed bug can you put these clothes away.

2. Get rid of clutter

Bed bugs love clutter, which are ideal breeding grounds for them. So if you have any cluttered areas that you’ve neglected to straighten up, then start there and de-clutter it before you start the bed bug treatment. If you vacuum after you get rid of all the clutter, it will be more effective and help you get into the nooks and crannies without much difficulty.

3. Vacuum the affected areas

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Using a vacuum cleaner is one of the most common home remedies for bed bugs. The important thing is not to panic at the mere sight of a bed bug. You just need to vacuum clean the affected areas to completely remove the parasites. Use a powerful vacuum cleaner to clean the upholstery, bed frames, box springs, baseboards, curtains, furniture, mattresses, cupboards, and other affected areas. Not only does vacuuming help collect the bed bugs into the bin, it also helps clear the dirt, grime, and skin cells from these items, that is the main nourishment for these parasites. Keep vacuum cleaning for at least a week, which cuts off their nourishment, thereby allowing them to die with nothing to feed on.

4. Wipe down all areas

Once you’ve vacuumed every last thing that was affected by the bed bugs, wipe them down thoroughly with a clean cloth. Not only will this make sure that the remaining bed bugs (if any) are got rid of, it will also cleanse the items of any dirt and grime there is. You can use a good disinfectant available in the market for this step.

5. Use hot steam

Did you know that bed bugs can lay their eggs inside the mattresses? Yucky, but true. So mere cleaning or vacuuming may not work for to get rid of these nasty bed bug eggs. And if you don’t account for these eggs and don’t get rid of them, they will hatch and the cycle will repeat, only making your life that much more miserable. Therefore, you need to get rid of these eggs by exposing your mattress to hot steam, so that the eggs are killed off and you may sleep peacefully.

It may not just be your mattress where the bed bugs have laid eggs, but the nooks and crannies in your furniture, folds of your bed linen and clothes, cabinets, fixtures, curtains, etc., too. So you need to treat these to hot steam too, to get rid of them once and for all.

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6. Heat treatment

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Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

As mentioned above, bed bugs are sensitive to heat, so this is one of the more effective treatments to get rid of them. If washing the bed bug-infected clothes in hot water doesn’t cut it, you can apply heat another way too. You can use a red hot iron to press the sheets and clothes with the temperature turned to a maximum.

For furniture, carpets, mattresses, and mats, you can leave them in the hot sun for a few days. You can dry them in a dryer with the setting turned to maximum heat too. While you’re subjecting these furniture and upholstery to heat treatment, it is advised not to use them so that you cut off all nourishment for these parasites.

7. Ice treatment

Just as the bed bugs can’t tolerate extreme heat, they can’t endure extreme cold either. So if it’s winter season, you can leave your bed bug-infested clothes outside so that the cold might kill them off. Another method to adopt is so put your clothes and sheets inside the freezer. This is possible only if you have a large cold storage equipment, rather than a regular refrigerator.

In that case, what you can do is to wash your clothes in ice cold water or leave it in ice until it melts into water. Although this is time-consuming, it will be well worth it to have successfully killed off these parasites. However, you may have to repeat this treatment for a few days for sure results.

8. Get covers for your pillows and mattresses

Now that you’ve aired, cleaned, washed, and steamed your mattresses, pillows, and pillow cases, cover them with cases so that there won’t be any escape routes for these parasites to get in.

9. Use neem leaves

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Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Neem leaves are known to have anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-microbial properties that are super-effective in removing bed bugs from the upholstery that is stitched to the furniture. Simply pluck fresh neem leaves and crumple them so that there is enough of its strong smell is permeating. Now spread these leaves on the upholstery, mattresses, bed linens, and any other item that you suspect has been affected with bed bugs. Leave them under fixtures, couches, beds, etc., where you suspect bed bugs might be hiding. Leave them be until the leaves dry out and do not have any aroma left. Replace them with fresh leaves, and repeat a couple of times, before vacuuming and cleaning the surfaces.

Now, to use neem leaves for disinfecting clothes and bedspreads, you can boil neem leaves in a bucket of water and dip all the clothes in it. Let it sit for a while, till the water cools down. Now wash these disinfected clothes in a strong detergent, again, preferably in hot water. This ought to get rid of the pesky bed bugs once and for all. Also, to be on the safer side, you can take a shower in neem water to prevent bed bugs from biting you and sucking your blood.

10. Spray isopropyl alcohol

Isopropyl alcohol is rubbing alcohol, and is generally used to disinfect the bitten area. However, you can use this to spray the affected areas where you suspect of bed bug infestation.

11. Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil has a strong, pungent smell, and it is this smell that helps keep the bed bugs at bay. All you need to do is spray the tea tree oil all around your bed and any suspected affected areas so that bed bugs won’t be able to suck your blood while you’re sleeping. This would be a temporary fix, since it only keeps the parasites at bay for a short period of time.

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12. Lavender oil


Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Lavender oil is an essential oil, which is said to be a natural bed bug repellent. It’s the small and the taste of this herb that keeps these pesky parasites at bay. All you have to do is keep dried lavender between the folds of two cloth pieces and sew them around the perimeter of your mattress. You can spray lavender essential oil around your bed and apply it on your skin to keep bed bug bites at bay too.

These are the most effective home remedies for bed bugs. Before you pick up the phone and call the professional pest control guys, try these natural remedies. You will be pleased with the results, for sure!

Featured image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Article Name
12 Practical Home Remedies For Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are nasty, pesky parasites. Check out these home remedies for bed bugs that are practical and super effective.
Chaitra Ramalingegowda

Chaitra Ramalingegowda

I fell in love with storytelling long before I knew what it was. Love well written stories, writing with passion, baking lip-smacking-finger-licking chocolate cakes, engaging movies, and home-cooked food. A true work-in-progress and a believer in the idiom 'all those who wander are not lost'. Twitter: @ChaitraRlg