Jun 11, 2018
by editorial team and Sophia Ruan Gushée
As moms, we do the seemingly impossible: Juggle our kid’s schedules, work full-time jobs, maintain our households, get dinner on the table, and tuck our kids in at night. We’re masters of “doing it all” and making it look seamless.
When bed bugs appear, it can throw a wrench in our seamless juggling.
It’s a problem that needs our immediate attention and takes time to resolve.
Bed bugs are a global problem, found in North America, South America, Africa, Asia, and Europe. They have been found in 5-star hotels and resorts, despite the level of cleanliness. Bed bugs, as their name indicates, are found in, and near, beds, or other places where people sleep. Here are a few places bed bugs have been found: (1)
Within those locations, bed bugs hide in both expected and unusual places that are within 8 feet of where people sleep including: (2)
Bed bugs spread from clothing and luggage. While bed bugs are rarely found in planes, trains, and motor vehicles, they do travel from place to place on people. If you have bed bugs, take precautions not to spread them while traveling. (3)
When trying to determine if you have bed bugs, look for itching, excessive scratching, and loss of sleep. Sometimes bed bug bites will be visible on the skin as just a small bite; and other times it can result in an allergic reaction.
Typically these bites are anywhere on the body and happen during sleeping times. The bites can take up to 14 days to show, so it’s important to pay attention to all signs and not just the bites themselves.
Here are 5 indicators that you may have bed bugs: (4)
Professional bed bug extermination companies commonly use insecticides to kill bed bugs. Unfortunately, most solutions for getting rid of bed bugs involve chemicals that may be toxic to our health. There are treatment options that advertise being “less toxic” that may minimize health effects of insecticide use.
Here are a few steps you can take to minimize chemicals to get rid of bed bugs: (5)
These nontoxic steps will likely need to be done in combination with other solutions. Consult with a professional exterminator to determine the best strategy for your bed bug situation, and ask what nontoxic (like extreme heat), or less toxic insecticides and bed bug removal methods are available.
(1)(2)(4) Center for Disease Control
(3) New York City
Access Sophia's shopping list for her household staples. They're her favorite low toxic items that she can't live without. Also see which EMF protection products she uses.