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Bedbugs "Cimex lectularius" are bloodsucking insects : they feed on the blood of human beings! So, wherever there will be humans, there will be bed bugs!
Bedbugs are visible to the naked eye (5 to 8 mm long). They do not fly because they have no wings, but they walk fast. Bedbugs have an oval and flattened body and have microscopic hairs that give them a slightly scratched, reddish-brown appearance. Their longevity varies from 4 months to a year.
Harmful only by their dermatological manifestations, bedbugs are not a vector transmission of infectious agents.
The experts are sure of one thing: hygiene has nothing to do with the problem! There has been a resurgence of these insects since the 1990s, but they have existed for millennia. Proof is found in some Egyptian tombs dating back to 3550 years! Well known to our ancestors before the Second World War, this insect disappeared from our daily life around the 1950s, thanks to the use of the DTT, an insecticide that is banned today, one of the reasons for its reappearance. Similarly, globalization has favored business and tourist travels, meaning bed bugs hide and travel too...in suitcases. Big cities are first and most infested - In 2010, New-York was hit by a terrible epidemic. Therefore, it is travelers - ourselves as well as the tenants of furnished apartments - who bring bed bugs in our habitats!
When returning from a trip abroad, the traveler must guard against an infestation of his furnished flat. Starting with luggages, The traveler must avoid putting bags or clothes on furniture with a fabric upholstery, but instead they should put them on a tiled floor, as in a kitchen or a bathroom. The easiest way is to place the suitcases in the bathroom, take a shower oneself, then wash clothes at 60 ° C (or give them to the laundry) or / and put them in the dryer, then brush the zipper of the suitcase in the bathtub or shower tray.
For sweaters that can not be washed at high temperatures, enclose them in an airtight bag and put them in the freezer for 48 hours at -20 ° C.
As for infested furniture, Canadians have a process of freezing them in a cold room of -25%!
If you live in a building, immediately alert the trustee who should post a warning urging residents to adopt these cleaning measures. The goal is to prevent bed bugs from passing from one furnished apartment to another.
Then, vacuum everywhere! Once the room has been thoroughly cleaned, remove the bag from the vacuum cleaner, place it immediately inside a garbage bag that must be sealed seal before discarding. Repeat the same operation in each room.
To remove the bedbugs’ eggs, nothing works like hot steam (90 ° C) projected in all possible hiding places. Be aware that it is possible to rent a steam machine at an appliance rental store. "Dry steam" machine exist too, and are very useful to kill the bedbugs and their eggs inside the luggage.
Also, “diatomaceous earth” is an ancestral solution that dries bed bugs. Spread diatomaceous earth around the bed and even in the bed, as well as in the rest of the housing. This harmless insecticide for pets and men is inexpensive to use and can be removed with the vacuum cleaner. However, after a few days, the diatomaceous earth absorbs water and dust and loses its effectiveness. So the powder is to be renewed.
Finally, this phenomenon has created a need for professional companies to eradicate the problem, and many have emerged. Some of them, aside from having all the necessary equipment to do the job, have gone so far as to use sniffer dogs for more efficiency!
Warning: the costs of intervention differ from one company to another and, unfortunately, no guarantee is issued to ensure that the bugs will not come back.
Infestation of bedbugs is now a major public health problem. Here are the main clues and symptoms of their presence:On your body:
As you know, the landlord must "give the tenant a decent home that does not give rise to obvious risks that could affect the physical safety or health." Recently, the Elan law adopted on October 16, 2018 added that housing must be "free of all pest and pest infestation".
Even though bed bugs are known to take refuge in suitcases and shoes and arrive with tourists and expats, the owner will still have to pay for the disinsection, or even the replacement of the mattress if it proves necessary.
Photo by Greg Rivers