Now that the holiday season is coming to an end, thousands of people will be traveling both to and from Florida. Travel is once again on the rise, both for the Christmas season and our usual snowbirds. Unfortunately, some folks won’t be making the trip alone.
No, we’re not talking about emotional support animals.
After bedbugs reemerged as a problem at the beginning of the century they spread rapidly across the United States and other countries. One of the reasons for the quick global infestation is that bedbugs just love to hitchhike with people traveling.
Losing the Scent
As we’ve talked about in the past, bedbugs are big fans of dirty laundry – for whatever reason, they love the smell and will leave their hotel hidey-holes to snuggle in deep in your suitcases. Once there, they can travel with you.
There’s even speculation they can travel from suitcase to suitcase during travel, which is how they end up on planes. Bedbugs also “hibernate” – going into a dormant state for two to six months, so they might hang around your home for a while before coming out to play.
There’s a reason Florida almost always ranks at the top of the list for the top states for bedbugs and the Gulf Coast area is consistently in the top 25. As a major tourist destination and as a leading state for seasonal visitors – and with multiple cruise ports – the state is ripe for these unwanted travelers.
Locked But Not Loaded
So how do you avoid these creepy crawlies from invading? Once your home is infested, only a trained expert can help you get rid of them. The process often includes throwing out or destroying furniture, clothes, even carpets.
Experts say the best way to avoid bedbugs sneaking into your travel gear is to load your dirty clothes into a sealed bag. If you’ve left your laundry out and worry you might already have a problem, you can soak your clothes for 24 hours in cold water, then launder them in hot water – at least 140 degrees - to kill all stages of bedbugs. Dry on high heat those articles that can be machine dried. For delicate fabrics, dry cleaning is also an effective solution to eliminate bedbugs from those clothes.
Bedbug bites are sometimes hard to tell apart from other Florida bug bites. But they tend to show up on hairless areas of your skin, mostly on extremities – and in clusters of three in a row. Your first step is to check around the seams and under the edges of your bedclothes, curtains, and mattresses.
If you find signs of a bedbug infestation, don’t wait – call us at Good News Pest Solutions. We have green, minimal risk solutions for bedbugs that can often save you from having to throw anything away. For more information from one of our highly trained pest experts, just give us a call!
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