Bed bugs are, unfortunately, a common problem in the US and all over the world, no matter how clean your home or hotel is. They spread easily in fabrics, and once they take hold require heat treatments to eradicate. They also cause us all to shudder when we think about them – something unseen climbing out of the mattress to suck your blood as you sleep? It sounds like something from a horror movie.

 

So, it’s no surprise that they often make headlines, and 2020, despite the lack of travel, is no different! Here’s some of the most notable news stories in the first half of 2020:

 

Bed Bugs Aren’t Attracted to Dirt, But They Can Make Your Home Dirtier  

In July an article by Robert Preidt in U.S. News shared new research from North Carolina State that showed that, while bed bugs aren’t attracted to dirty areas, they can make your home a dirtier place to be.

 

They found that bed bugs cause alterations in the composition of the dust within your home. The evidence showed that the microbiome of the household dust in bed bug infested homes was different to that found in non-bed bug infested homes.

 

Once the bed bugs had been eliminated, the household dust microbiomes started to transform back to how a microbiome would be in a non-infested home.  

 

Baltimore and Washington D.C. are the Most Infested Cities          

A January news article by USA Today reported that Baltimore, while topping the list of most-bed bug infested cities for three years, had been beaten by Washington D.C. for the duration of 2019. The other cities that took the top 5 spots were Chicago, Los Angeles, and Columbus.

  

Coronavirus May Have Reduced the Likelihood of Spreading Bed Bugs

A New York Times article in June reported that, if there’s one good thing to come out of coronavirus, it’s that the spread of bed bugs will have significantly reduced with the restrictions on travel. It remains to be seen if that will have an effect long term, since bed bugs can live without food for up to three months, but it’s likely the combination of empty beds and hotels using the time to improve their facilities will put at least a temporary damper on the bed bug population.  

  

Struggling with Bed Bugs?  

Getting bitten while you sleep is enough to tell you that you probably have bed bugs, but you should also look out for other signs such as fecal stains, cast skins, blood spots, and a peculiar odor. If you spot any of these indicators, don’t wait to take action.

 

If you are worried that you may have bed bugs, call in the professionals. We can help you to find an IBBRA-certified professional in your local area to help you to solve any bed bug problem you may be having. Visit our website to learn more about bed bugs and to find your certified pest professional who will be able to eliminate your bed bug infestation.