Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Snug as a...Bedbug?

My son and daughter-in-law are traveling to New York soon. With all the media attention give to bedbugs I thought it would be helpful to do a little research on the critters. I would hate to have their vacation ruined!

Wikipedia says “The name 'bedbug' is derived from the insect's preferred habitat of houses and especially beds or other areas where people sleep.”

Bedbugs usually congregate together and can be found in beds, couches as well as luggage and other furniture. They especially like cracks and crevices associated with the bed frame and mattress. Bedbugs don’t care if their surroundings are clean or dirty. They can be found in even the most pristine accomations. Bedbugs usually are active at night and that is when most people get bitten.

Bed bugs are small, oval non-flying insects. Adult bed bugs reach 5-7 mm in length, while nymphs (juveniles) are as small as 1.5 mm. (They areabout the size of an apple seed.) Bed bugs have flat bodies and may sometimes be mistaken for ticks or small cockroaches. Adult bed bugs are reddish brown in color while nymphs are clear in color and appear bright red after feeding.

Bedbugs don't usually stay on their human hosts after their meal, but they might hide in your clothes or luggage left nearby on the floor. If you're traveling and bedbugs get into your luggage, you could end up bringing them home with you.

Travelers may want to get in the habit of checking their bed for signs of bed bugs. (Tiny dark spots reveal the presence of bedbugs.)Placing luggage up off the floor onto a luggage rack is a good idea. Vacuuming is not effective against these pests and most pesticides don’t work either. You could try pouring boiling water over them or using extreme temperatures. Or…you could try something a little easier and safer.

Kayla at Essential Wholesale has put together a video on how to make a natural Bed Bug Spray. Using Lavender Essential Oil as one of the main ingredients you can fight these little pests. On her blog Kayla says that lavender has been used for generations as a natural remedy for bed bugs.

I hope to never encounter these guys on any of my hotel stays. I will now travel with a spray using Kayla’s recipe. It’s hard to believe that the bedbug problem could become an epidemic! YUCK.
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