A century ago, bed bugs, along with many other household pests, were much more commonplace in homes across the country.
Decades passed and we believed bed bugs vanished into the lines of nighttime nursery rhymes recited to sleepy children.
That is until recent years when bedbugs began to resurface once again. The EPA and CDC report a new resurgence of bed bugs.
They commented that this may be due to “the result of increased international travel and heightened resistance to available pesticides,” as reported by the University News.
Reports of bed bugs in hotels and motels make travelers nervous about the possibility of becoming victimized by these little blood suckers.
One thing that many people never think about, however, is the possibility of becoming the person who brings bed bugs into a hotel.
Bed bugs in retail stores
Shopping is one of the common activities people enjoy when they travel. Unfortunately, retail stores have also played host to these unwanted pests. Making a purchase from a store with bed bugs might possibly bring hitchhikers with you on your travels.
They quietly hide in your shopping bag, and then mingle among your clothes in your suitcase, and make themselves at home in your hotel room. It isn’t just the little street bodegas that should concern you either.
Major retailers such as Nike, Abercrombie & Fitch, Hollister, and Victoria’s Secret “were compelled to clear their floors in recent months because of the sudden presence of bedbugs,” according to enewsbuilder.
Do bed bugs carry disease?
While there is still debate as to any contributing factor of disease transmission from bedbugs directly–there are “numerous secondary infections such as impetigo, ecthyma, and lymphangitis” that bed bug bites cause according to one study reported by Alice L. Anderson, Assistant Professor of Environmental Health, East Carolina University.
These conditions are enough to cause concern for anyone traveling.
This public health issue may see some welcome relief according to one company, Nature-Cide, who recently announced a new travel companion for anyone who may encounter a bed bug infestation.
How do you get rid of bed bugs?
According to a Nature-Cide press release, “Over a three year period, the Nature-Cide products have been tested around the world and have been proven to be very effective insecticides and pesticides.
” They claim that bedbugs (as well as many other insects) “don’t stand a chance against the Nature-Cide formulation,” according to Pacific Shore Holdings, Inc. President and CEO Matthew Mills, who leads all of the Company’s Research and Development.
They offer a 2 ounce travel size spray of Nature-Cide Bed Bug products. The spray is said to be “100% natural and safe to spray anywhere in the home,” according to the Nature-Cide website.
One can presume if the product is safe at home it is likely to have the same results in hotels. If this product will do as it claims, it will be a welcome addition for anyone who travels in areas with known bed bug infestations.
Best way to treat bed bugs
Checking your hotel for evidence of bed bugs is the first line of defense. It is important to look for active adult bedbugs–as well as eggs, feces, and shed “skins” of larvae.
Also check any purchases you make that may be able to hide bed bugs. The best advice when you travel however is avoid bed bugs all together if possible.
How to know if your hotel has bedbugs–places bedbugs hide
–Pull back the top quilt and blankets checking in the seams of the mattress
–Inspect the bed frame and rails
–Look behind the headboard
–Also check hotel upholstered chairs and couches
–If you find bedbugs in your hotel room, ask for a room on a different floor. Just like cockroaches, bedbugs travel from room to room under cracks in doors.
–Look around electric switch plates
–Inspect wooden baseboards near the floor
–Check the drapes and curtains
–Peer inside heating and AC ducts
–Keep your suitcases and other luggage closed when not in use
–Place your suitcase on the rack provided in most hotels, rather than on the floor or upholstered chairs where bedbugs may be hiding.
–If you encounter bed bugs when traveling, wash clothing and inspect luggage thoroughly.
To know if you made a reservation at a hotel with a possible past outbreak of bed bugs–Check Bed Bug Registry.