How to Stop Bed Bugs From Coming Home From College With Your Kid
The number of reports of bed bug problems that require pest control climbs each year when college-aged kids return home for holidays and breaks. This is because bed bugs thrive in college dorms due to the large number of people, messy clutter, and poor hygiene. Once these pests make it into the dorm, they rapidly spread by catching a ride on clothing, backpacks, and shoes.
If your kid has bed bugs present in their dorm room, chances are good that some of these insects will travel home with them in their dirty laundry and bedding. Prevention is the best way to protect your home from an infestation of these pests. Learn how to protect your home by preventing bed bugs from accompanying your college kid home from school.
Know How to Identify Bed Bugs
Before they feed, bed bugs appear as small, flat insects with an oval shape. Bed bugs are around one-quarter inch long and have an appearance similar to an apple seed. They range in color from beige to brown, although they often appear red and bloated after a meal. Eggs are harder to spot as they are a pearly white color and only about the size of a pinhead.
Have Your Child Check Their Dorm Room for Signs of Bed Bugs
It's important to conduct a thorough search and not just a cursory glance to check for pests. Bed bugs are often found on mattresses and bedding, on furniture, but they also hide behind baseboards and other objects. Check for these signs:
- Live or dead bed bugs
- Reddish-black spots on bedding, clothing, and furniture
- Shed skins
- Red bite marks or rashes on your skin
You can typically identify bites from bed bugs if they appear in lines or groups, or if you notice the unexplained rash in the morning after you get out of bed.
Stress Precautions For Your Child to Take While at College
Remind your child of the importance of regularly checking for bed bugs and taking the necessary precautions to avoid infestations:
- Keep the room tidy and free of clutter
- Clean and vacuum regularly
- Use protective mattress and pillow covers with zippers
- Keep the bed from touching the wall
These simple measures go a long way to help protect belongings and make it easier to spot signs of bed bugs early.
Avoid Bringing Bed Bugs Home From College
One of the most important steps to take to prevent your kid from bringing bed bugs home is to inspect everything before packing to go home. This includes suitcases, bedding, clothing, and furniture. Another good technique is to wash and dry all clothing and linens at the hottest possible temperature to get rid of any missed bed bugs or eggs. You can also vacuum out luggage bags and wipe down hard surfaces of laptops and furniture.
Eliminate Bed Bugs With the Help of Viking Pest Control
If your child does happen to return home from college with a few uninvited guests, you can trust Viking Pest Control to get rid of the infestation. Viking is an award-winning pest control company that provides effective bed bug treatment for residents in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Delaware. Contact Viking Pest Control today to schedule a free estimate!