How to get rid of bed bugs naturally? The famous bed-time verse “sleep tight, and do not let the bugs bite” may be actually hitting the bull’s eye more than usual people realizing. These detestable and notorious “travellers” are a major problem and although their incidence contracted during the mid 20th century, they have been on the rise again since 1990’s. They can be transported unintentionally by naive persons via luggage, inventories, bed, clothes, etc.
Despite their minute size, bedbugs are the kings of their arena. They can infest an entire house, floor, building or hotel, and they have been in the industry of being a parasite since a long time. Bed bugs are mentioned in medieval European literature and classical Greek texts.
They are wingless insects of brownish-black color. Their sizes range from a quarter to a half an inch in length, similar to ticks in appearance. They are flat and oval-shaped – like a wheat grain. Biologically they belong to a family of parasitic insects called Cimicidae, they feed mainly on mammalian blood. After sucking blood, their bodies swell and their color changes to reddish. Bed bugs are so named because they are usually found nearby or inside of beds and beddings and to remain active at night to feed on people – who are usually oblivious to their presence.
Why We Need to Get Rid of Bed Bugs?
Bedbugs proficiently use their beak-like mouth to penetrate mammalian skin and drawing out blood as their food. Bed bugs are notorious for nasty bites. Some people are oblivious to bedbug bites, but for those who do react, bed bugs can be a dreadful pest infestation.
Bed bug bites usually appear as a puffy, whitish ridge on the bite location on the skin. They may be inconspicuous in some cases, whereas in others, they may be characterized by distinct itching to the extent that severe allergy reactions clinically manifest in the form of asthma, rashes, etc.
Bedbug bites also cause a few people to suffer from a form of anxiety issue or a psychological condition, where they imagine being bitten even though it’s not happening, and this leads to them being constantly nervous and anxious. This anxiety may in turn result in insomnia, which could further affect their overall health and wellness.
Why Bedbugs Are Persistent Difficult to Eliminate?
As said earlier, there is more of these bed bugs that meets the eye. They are well-built, tremendously persistent, and extremely tolerant to any constant or changing environment, that survived for extended periods (a year or even more) without feeding on blood can seemingly be innocuously simple for these arthropods. Using their small size more likely as an advantage rather than an exposing weakness, bed bugs can easily conceal in cracks and crevices and seldom come out from their hideouts in day time. This presents extreme difficulty for those attempting to find and exterminate these insects.
Bed bugs are wingless, so they cannot fly nor jump around like fleas. However, they can move at an astounding pace and can crawl on the floor, carpet, sofas, mattress, sheets, and furniture with ease. Further, female bedbugs can lay in excess of 5 to 7 eggs (approx.) per week (or 300–500 eggs in a lifetime if fed adequately). The eggs hatch in a short span of time, in about ten days. This exponential rate of growth enables these insects to create a massive and huge army of brown “bed criminals bugs” in a very short span of time.
A strong chemical insecticide or more usually a natural bed bug solution is typically used by experts and professionals to eliminate and control the intricate problem of bedbugs, but there are several other effective ways to get the task done without the use of insecticides/ pesticides or any other toxic method. Additionally, the use of pesticides can pose a few problems: First, these strong and concentrated chemicals may pose possible health hazards for both humans and pets, including some forms of cancer and sometimes acute neurotoxicity. Secondly, using pesticides frequently against bedbugs may result in development of resistance to the pesticides and dispersion of these bugs.
17 Natural Ways Get Rid Of Bed Bugs
Following are some of the natural bed bugs solutions and ways to get rid of bed bugs (not pertaining to any particular order of preference). It is often recommended to do as much as achievable to get rid of bed bugs as they are very difficult to eliminate.
1.) Get Rid of Bed Bugs by Physical Removal
Isolating bedbugs and with preventing these bed bugs from spreading further, is one of the primary steps to begin with. Cracks and crevices of bed-frames should be examined, especially if the frame is made of wood. It also rewards to scrutinize cracks and corners of dressers, drawers, tufts, skirts, and cracks beneath the cushions of upholstered beds and sofas; cracks and disturbances in wood molding; junctures in ceiling-walls, behind picture frames, plates, and outlets. But this is one of the tedious ways of a natural bed bugs solution
Bed Bugs can (and should) be pushed to get out from their hideouts. This can be easily done using either a small knife or a playing card. Once the bugs have been forced out of their residing place such as cracks and crevices, you can catch them with a sticky packing tape and crush them in paper towels.
2.) Diatomaceous Earth to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
It is a kind of soft sedimentary rock, the powder of diatomaceous earth can be applied in a dry environment to control bed bugs. This dust-like powder of this rock can remain put on the bedbugs’ exoskeleton or outer layer. This disrupts the layer and dehydrating the insects. Also, upon walking on diatomaceous earth, the bugs carrying the earth along with them through their legs and they lick it off. On consuming the sharp silica damages their insides and kills them easily.
3.) Get Rid of Bed Bugs with Kidney Bean Leaves
In Eastern and central Europe, kidney bean leaves are spread on the floor of a bedbug-infested room to trap and capture bedbugs. The leaves are destroyed after they are stuck on it. The principle behind this practice can be attributed to the microscopic sticky hairs (i.e.trichomes) on the kidney bean leaf surface that pierce the feet of bed bugs. When stuck by the trichomes, the bedbugs are not able to liberate themselves despite their struggle.
4.) Pyrethrum to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Pyrethrum is a type of natural bed bug solution (extract) which is obtained from the dried flower heads of plants C. coccineum & Chrysanthemum cinerariifolium. These perennial plants are usually called “pyrethrum” and boast of daisy-like flowers. The refined and concentrated form of the “pyrethrum extract” is pyrethrin. It attacks the nervous system of bed bugs and is eventually toxic to them.
5.) Get Rid of Bed Bugs a Fungus (Beauveria Bassiana)
It is a fungus that acts as a parasite to insects, thus exterminating or at the least disabling them. Because of such action, this fungus is considered to be a “natural insecticide.” This natural bed bug solution grows in soil and is environmentally safe to use for bed bug control. A 2012 US study of the Dept. of Entomology, Pennsylvania State University, had studied that B. bassiana is virulent against bed bugs and causes the death of these insects in 3 to 5 days following short-term contact with the natural bed bug solution residues. This special fungus has also some “pre-lethal” effects on the bugs such as reduced feeding ability, mobility, and productiveness.
6.) Get Rid of Bed Bugs Essential Oils
Essential oils like oregano oil, tea tree oil and manuka oil appear to be efficient in alleviating itching and swelling from bed bug bites. As a potent bedbug killer, they are effected too. These oils “suffocates” the bugs by blocks their spiracles (the external openings of the bedbugs’ respiratory and nervous system). Especially Tea tree oil can be used to make a mixture with water in a spray bottle. Then, this mixture is used to light mist on one’s furniture, sheets, pillows, and other areas where bed bugs have been marked. Cedar and orange oil are natural remedies to eradicate bed bugs. These can also be categorized under natural bed bugs solution. These oils only work when they come in contact with the insects (contact kill).
7.) Get Rid of Bed Bugs Thermal Treatment
Applying heat from house appliance or industrial blow dryer kills bedbugs within a few seconds of continuous contact. When blow dryers or washers cannot be used for some items, these items can be terminated by enclosing them in a plastic and keeping them outdoors in a sunny area where the sun’s thermal radiation can toast these bugs. Also try airing the beds, mattresses, or furniture out in the bright sunlight. Exposed surfaces and concealed areas to the heat emitted by the sun to kill also the eggs. Concentrated steam treatment can also eliminate bed bugs at all stages, but this method can sometimes be unsuccessful as the bugs are good at hiding. Also this natural bed bug solution may not be suitable for all furnishings.
8.) Cold Treatment to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Cold treatment is as cheaper than heat treatment. Both the hot and cold treatments are effective against bugs because these insects are vulnerable to temperature extremes and require a steady temperature without airflow. A simple and natural bed bug solution is to control bugs using cold treatment is just to place a few desktop fans on the floor around the affected bed or area and to let air flow circulate constantly in the area for at least 3 hours daily. Alternatively, you can also use an air conditioner, it can be turned on to cool and dry the air.
9.) Double Sided Tape to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
One of the more unusual tactics, but a natural bed bug solution has nonetheless been the use of double sided tape to create zones free of bugs – as they cannot pass the sticky barrier! Some ideas seen are to put the tape around the legs of beds and also around the edge of the mattress.
10.) Cleaning and Disinfecting to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Even though bedbugs are not an indicator of bad sanitation, eliminating all the unnecessary clutter to diminish the possible places where bugs can hide can be a very good natural bed bugs solution. If possible, all items assumed of having bed bugs should be cleansed in very warm water (150 °F) and dried for at least half an hour. Where laundering is not efficient or possible, items such as bedding, toys, footwear, and clothes can be placed in a clothes dryer set at high temperature (as long as this will not spoil the clothing of course) for around 20 min to kill bugs.
11.) Vacuuming to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Another natural bed bugs solution, vacuuming Carpets, sofa, any crack or crevice, frames of bed, or any place that appears to be a bug hideout should be vacuumed – even as often as every alternative day. One of the things that make bedbugs loathsome is that they and their eggs can be very difficult to dislodge, so be certain that the end of the suction pipe should be moved and frayed along infested places. Note that the vacuumed left over should be disposed of in a sealed trash can bag or the vacuum or seal should be disposed outside the house.
12.) Plastering Cracks to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Plastering cracks and crevices. One of the ingenious natural bed bugs solution technique is to get rid of a pest is to demolish its hiding place. Apply caulk to seal the crevices and joints in boards and gaps of shelving or cabinet, and repair the appearing cracks in plaster. Tighten them and fill the cracks appearing in the house.
13.) Discarding to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Discarding of infested furnishings to get rid of bed bugs. Most often than not, items or furnishings need not be discarded away. Discarding items such as a mattress or a sofa is of course a costly option. However, a heavy bug infestation necessitates it to be done, especially if the item is with bugs and eggs in already hard-to-reach places and the item is in a relatively poor condition. This is one of the costliest natural bed bugs solution to get rid of bed bugs.
14.) Scented Dyer Sheet to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
The essence from scented dryer sheet is assumed to have a repelling effect against bed bugs. Spread the scented dryer sheets over the sofas and mattresses of the house. Have around 7 – 9 scented dryer sheets in between box spring and mattress, and put the equal amount of dryer sheets on the surface of the bed.
15.) Cleaning Agents to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Cleaning agents, lavender and bleach are very helpful to get rid of bed bugs. Earlier mentioned diatomaceous earth, though a natural bed bug solution, is an abrasive in nature against bugs. Certain cleansing agents contain diatomaceous earth and can kill the bugs by dehydrating them insects. A frequent use of strong bleaching agents to clean the walls & floors can work well too. Lavender sachets have become trendy nowadays; lavender essence repels bed bugs and therefore keeps them away.
16.) Alcohol to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
This natural bed bug solution is also intoxicating for the bed bugs as for humans. The use of spray mist alcohol on walls, floors, mattress, and furniture can be effectual against bed bugs. It kills bedbugs upon exterior contact and dehydrates the eggs. Please note that this natural bed bug solution can stain and damage wood surfaces finished with lacquered or varnish tops such as in furniture. Because of this, it is usually advisable to test first a minute portion of the furniture to assess if alcohol reacts to it adversely.
17.) Sealing Mattress In Plastic Cover to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Though a very cumbersome natural bed bug solution, a properly sealed mattress cover will avoid the tiny monsters from getting in or out and this can be a very practical strategy.
If natural bed bugs solutions are not sufficient for getting rid of bed bugs, professional pest control is definitely advised, but this will certainly involve chemical treatments.