Even in the cleanest household, an infestation of bed bugs can occur. There are many options for prevention and treatment of this pest as well as advice for treating the painful red bites. This is a guide for getting rid of bed bugs.
By janet 1
I know this is a creepy subject, but bed bugs are becoming rampant. There is a very save chemical called diatamaceous earth you put under all the legs of every bed and couch in your house so they call in it and die. Also, wrap your beds in strong plastic wrap - the box springs as well. Dust your couches everywhere (including underneath and under the cushions). Diatomaceous earth will not hurt you or your pets. I hope this is helpful for some of you that are having the same problem we are having.
By Janet from Houston, TX
By Ingrid W. 2
Bed bugs and dust mites are attracted to carbon dioxide that humans emit from our skin. They feed on dead human skin cells. People with "A" type blood tend to emit a bit different smell than "O" blood types which is more attractive to bed bugs. While traveling, I bring fabric softener sheets to put under the four corners of mattress under my sheets. 4 to 8 should do the job. Also, my blood type "A" friend sleeps elsewhere!
By Ingrid W. from Tempe, AZ
How can I rid a large upholstered chair (chaise) of unseen biting insects (bedbugs, mites)?
By guest (Guest Post) Flag
October 28, 2008
My aunt has bedbugs in her apartment and she tried literally everything and nothing worked.
I live in an apartment for senior citizens and we had a few bedbug incidences. They called in an exterminator and they use heat to get rid of them. I was really scared and went and got plastic covers for my box spring and mattress. The exterminator came and gave us tips on what to look for, etc. He was really helpful. Heat seemed to work for the folks who had the problem. I don't know much the treatment costs.
By poem300 1
How do I get rid of bed bugs?
By poem300 from NYC
May 3, 2011
Well, I have been struggling with bed bugs for close to a month, just when I thought I had gotten the upper hand, wham, I wake with bites all over again. It's to the point where I have to circle each bit to keep track if I have more. I have vacuumed, cleaned, laundry, constantly, and now I am doing it all over again. I hear that mineral oil is good to try, but I haven't tried it yet. I have tried baking soda, left that on my couch for 1 week or longer, then I vacuumed the pic-a-dilly out of it. I have tried alcohol rub spraying on anything and everything. I took the week off of work just to get a good week on this situation all of this week. Along with putting silicone, and mineral oil around the base board of the house, and I also bought expanding foam, to use on the bigger projects. I think I am going to go along the base boards with the mineral oil, and the bedding legs, couch legs. I am at my wits end and willing to try anything.
Now the question is: how often do they lay their eggs? Should I be vacuuming and cleaning vigorously? I am at the point of throwing out my couch. Help, anyone please. I am losing my mind. Do they live in your clothes? I have all material washed and bagged, and 2 pairs of clothes that I wear, and my pj's, and bedding, they all get washed on a daily basis.
By whittany 1
How do you get rid of bedbugs from your home? How do you make something like a recipe from household products? What do you put together to kill them? Does anyone know? If so, let me know asap please.
By Whittany from Muncie, IN
December 30, 2010
There are good posts on this ThriftyFun page that explain how you can get rid of them as well.
<a href="/tf678484.tip.html">Getting Rid of Bed Bugs</a><br/>
<li>washing sheets and blankets in hot water</li>
<li>sealing cracks around plumbing</li>
<li>ground cat litter</li>
By Mike 1
Has anybody ever heard of Bed Bug Chasers? Has anybody had any success treating an entire house with heat to get rid of bed bugs? Rather than chemicals I would like to treat the whole house rather a room or two just to be safe.
By Mike from Huntington, NY
July 17, 2010
Do a search on Diatomacous Food Grade. According to the reviews it will get rid of about anything and will not harm people or pets. It's sold on the internet or at Home Depot, or Garden shops and is reasonably priced.
I've known all my neighbors for 20 years. We live in a "luxury" apartment building. I don't know how to go about bringing up the subject and telling them. I feel I won't be invited or they will not come close to me.
I also have to let the management know. They know there is a problem in the building and have had a dog in my apartment, but everything was good. A month later they started. I'm trying to keep it under control. I vacuum everyday. There a only a few, but a few is to many.
It's also the preparation for an exterminator that freaks me out. I have a disability and from what I have read, everything has to taking out away from the wall and closets emptied.
Thank you for your time.
I am sorry this is so long.
By Bruno S.
March 8, 2015
How do you know you have bed bugs? Before you say anything, you should have a pest removal company check your apartment and give you a recommendation for treatment.
We recently stayed at a hotel and now I've got bites all over me. Only, I am being bitten out of the house as well. Does this make sense to anyone? Thanks!
May 8, 2014
They may have gotten in your traveling bags, pockets, or shoes. I had them once and have since gotten rid of them. I had a very old pair of boots that I only wore around the house; they moved into the old cracked boots and seams and under the inside padding. Try shining your shoes with a professional grade oil based shoe polish from an old fashioned shoe repair store. I threw out my favorite old boots, but now polish my new shoes the old fashioned way. I found this link today as I was looking up baking soda, if I ever get them back.
We have bedbugs in the apartments where I live. They haven't reached my apt yet. How do I get rid of bedbugs or prevent them?
By Dollie from Tucson, AZ
January 20, 2013
Diatomacious Earth should do it. (spelling may be wrong). It is available at garden shops, feed stores, etc. It's non-toxic to humans and animals but kills most bugs.
We don't know were they came from, but they have invaded my leather couch and the store bought sprays are not working very well. Does anyone have a better idea?
May 28, 2012
Rubbing alcohol kills bed bugs; preferably wintergreen. Could add your own essential oil(s), like frankincense, lavender, cinnamon oil, whatever.
Rubbing alcohol can also stop the itching from a bed bug bite. Do Not Use rubbing alcohol if you are allergic. Most people with allergies can have someone else spray and usually do not have a problem with this method if they wait for the alcohol is evaporate and the odor to dissipate.
Put rubbing alcohol in spray bottle and thoroughly saturate the item; couch, beds, baseboards, shoes ... so that it stays saturated for at least 15 minutes. Repeat every 3 to 4 days until there is no evidence of bites, then weekly thereafter. It can takes several months to completely eradicate the adults and hatching eggs.
It takes a long time to completely rid yourself of this type of infestation, but it can be done. Bed bugs can live for over 18 months without a feeding.
Vacuum floors, sprinkle carpets with Diamtomaeous Earth and leave in as long as you can; repeat several times a week, then weekly, then bi-monthly. DE can take months to work, so you want to use the rubbing alcohol as much as possible to stop with feeding frenzy.
Wash sheets, pillows, blankets, hats, clothing, washcloth's and towels and other items everyday and put in a hot dryer for at least 20 minutes at a temperature above 130 degrees. Things that cannot be washed, dried, steamed - can be put in black plastic bags and placed in the sun for a day or two or three.
Important: Buy and use plastic mattress and pillow covers with zippers that completely enclose the Bed Items, after they have been sprayed and naturally dried.
Shampoo hair everyday with dog flea shampoo with conditioner, they can hide, and lay eggs, in hair. Boil combs, hairbrushes.
If you do get an Exterminator; remember that you want to have the baseboards sprayed thoroughly and ALSO Have Them Use a FOGGER to get into the nooks and crannies.
Being DILIGENT is the Most Important Thing You Can Do.
I am a former nurse and know that this has been used by many people with really good results. Hope this helps you as well.
By IsadoraD 1
Are there any natural remedies for getting rid of bed bugs, that really work?
By IsadoraD from Boston, MA
August 27, 2012
Diatomaceous earth is a good pest repellent but it is not safe for human if it is not used properly, specially if it is inhaled, which would happen if Diatomaceous earth is put near a bed. Do check what is the form of diatomite you are using and take the necessary precautions.If you have a cat check also the type of diatomite used for its litter. Avoid the type of litter which produces a lot of dust when poured. Whatever type you are using avoid inhalation when pouring the litter.
To better understand why Diatomaceaous earth is not a gentle product of mother nature read the following from Wikipedia :
The absorbent qualities of diatomite can result in a significant drying of the hands if handled without gloves. The flux-calcined form contains a highly crystalline form of silica, resulting in sharp edges. The sharpness of this version of the material makes it dangerous to breathe and a dust mask is recommended when working with it.
The type of hazard posed by inhalation depends on the form of the silica. Crystalline silica poses a serious inhalation hazard because it can cause silicosis. Amorphous silica can cause dusty lungs and silicosis, but does not carry the same degree of risk as crystalline silica. Natural or dried diatomite generally contains crystalline silica. Diatomite produced for pool filters is treated with high heat (calcining) and a fluxing agent (soda ash), causing the formerly silicon dioxide to assume its crystalline form. A mask is necessary for working with either product.
The crystalline silica content of the dust's particulate is regulated in the United States by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and there are guidelines for the maximum amounts allowable in the product and in the air near the breathing zone of workers.''
How do I get rid of bed bugs?
By Mary M.
December 29, 2014
Diatoumaceous Earth, garden grade. Absolutely harmless to humans and animals but death on bugs. My daughter used it on her granddaughter for head lice and her teacher wanted to know how she did it so quickly. See Dave Owens, the Garden Guy website.
What are the steps to kill bedbugs? How do you clean the sheets with splattered blood and feces from bedbugs?
By Millie W.
October 12, 2012
I had a tenant who brought bedbugs into an apartment. I had great success using food grade Diatomaceous Earth, which can be purchased at Lowe's or Home Depot.
It is a white powder. Use a paintbrush to "paint" all your baseboards (where it meets the floor as well as the wall), the "feet" on your bed and where the wood frame meets the wall around the closet, windows and bedroom door. You may also want to "paint" the edges of your mattress.
The food grade type of Diatomaceous Earth is very safe. It works by dehydrating the bodies of the bedbugs. Works on roaches too!
When traveling how do you prevent bed bugs from coming home with you?
By audrey from Bedford, PA
June 24, 2009
Don't set your luggage on the floor. Put it on a chair, table or luggage rack if there is one, anything but floor and bed.
Are bed bugs red? What should I do about it?
By Deborah from Westland
September 29, 2014
First of All--Don't Panic. But don't delay in spraying to get rid of them. I helped my neighbor rid his apartment of bed bugs by using a spray by J.T. Eaton sold in hardware stores. The one-quart bottle comes with a sprayer. Spray all fabric covered furniture, especially the crevices thoroughly with this product. Put vaseline around the legs of any furniture. Spray wall to wall carpet, especially where it meets the wall, and remove area rugs. Make sure to remove the mattress and box spring and spray thoroughly including the seams. Launder any draperies and bedding in very hot water and dry in a hot dryer. Try to figure out where they came from. In my neighbor's case, a friend that was temporarily staying with him brought the bugs from his old apartment. If you are only seeing a few of them, this may be the case and infestion may not be severe. You must be diligent in continuing to spray periodically afterwards (I cannot stress this enough) to be sure they are all killed, along with eggs and larvae. You may use a 91% isopropyl alcohol spray (sold in drug stores) for maintenance purposes. Be sure to ventilate your rooms well. You can encase your mattress in a bedbug proof cover, but these are expensive the not truly necessary. The bugs prefer to bite women over men, and leave the marks in a triangle pattern. I received a lot of help from the owner of my local small hardware store.
I'm trying to find out if baking soda kills off bed bugs. Does anyone know? I want to get them before they infest my apartment, I detected them early. They are here due to a neighbor who brought in road side furniture.
By Irmi 11
How do I get rid of bed bugs?
October 7, 2013
Buy Diatomaceous Earth (food grade) at Home Depot or Lowe's. The good thing about this is that it is safe for humans and pets. The powder dries them up and so they can't build up an immunity.
Use a paintbrush or long-nosed squeeze bottle to coat baseboards, legs of the bed, and around door frames. Worked in an apartment building I have!
By Kay B. 1
What do bed bug bites look like and how to I get rid of bedbugs?
By Kay B.
How do I get rid of bed bugs myself? I'm not infested yet, I think my neighbor down stairs brought them here. I saw him bring in used furniture and now I'm suffering for it.
By Chris S
I know my home has BED BUGS. Is it true that thyme will actually get rid of them? I've been trying everything since January of 2005. Even had the pest control in my home 3 times. I used bombs, sprays the whole nine yards. If you have had bed bugs and gotten rid of them with thyme let me know. I would love to hear from previous bed bug victims.
If you're willing to try the Thyme and Tea Tree Oil approach, I found my Thyme in the spices section of my local supermarket. The Tea Tree Oil I found in the cosmetics section of my local health food store.
Personally, I finally had Terminix come in and go over my apartment. Using a "flushing agent" like Pyrethrin, a spray that prompts the bugs to scatter and also kills on contact, the exterminator found a few bed bugs under the edges of my carpet. She then applied a residual chemical containing Cyflurthrin. It sticks around for quite awhile and kills bugs when they crawl over it. A follow-up two weeks later found just a couple more and more spraying.
Then I found a few more one night around my computer console. If I'm not sleeping or at work I'm at my computer. It suddenly made sense, the bugs I found in my bed after the first application, I was probably bringing them with me from around my computer and my chair. I asked for the exterminator again since I'm still inside my 30 day warranty and he sprayed the residual again all around my computer area. Since then no bugs. (07/06/2006)
The best way I have found is extreme heat like steamers. Bed bugs can not survive in temperatures of 140 degrees, the steam machines are good for the carpets drapes and mattresses around the seams. Use comet or powder substance to place in the cracks you find in the tile and wall the powder will suffocate them including the eggs, your sheets cloths etc put in black trash bags and set them outside in the sun for 4 hours. Then wash everything at the hottest setting you are able to. From what I have read and from what I have dealt with if you can get them all you did darn good because you can go 6-7 months with out seeing one. The adults can live that long with out eating, but they say the only sure way to kill them is through heat. (07/14/2006)
Yes, I agree with Domingo, but I used a hair dryer. I put it in the hottest settings and blew it all over the bed. It seemed to work. I have been sleeping on the bed for days without one bite. I would spend 1 hour blowing it with the blowdryer in the highest settings (07/17/2006)
No Bites! I wrote back on 06/06/2006 from 2200 Ocean Avenue and have been bite free for about a month now (I was getting bit daily) here is what what I did and my advice to those who suffer.
Pull up all carpets
Buy a steamer (like the shark) to clean the bed frame the mattresses, the daybed frame (forget about a couch!) and the area rugs.
Put the legs of all beds in pyrex bowls of mineral oil and smear petroleum jelly around the non-submerged part. keep the bed off the wall keep the covers off the floor, don't let them get up on the bed! Watch every thing that goes on the bed, I found one squashed in my book!
Encase the mattresses and box springs in allergen proof covers (after steaming and/or extermination).
Wash everything (yes everything) in hot if you can with Clorox or Clorox 2. Throw out anything that you are not using right now (or that is not washable) along with the rugs (other than throw rugs that you can steam or wash) and the couch. You can not take this stuff with you when you go, unless you want to take the bugs, so why not make life better right now and throw out all you can. Store all your stuff in clear plastic bags and save your important stuff (the stuff you have to take with you when you leave) in sealed plastic, right now.
Thyme is great, it freaks them out and they climb the walls but my problem was too severe, I got two more exterminations and use the Ortho Home Defense Max regularly in places I don't touch. I leave the thyme sprigs under the sheets on the sides of the bed and sprinkle it liberally under the beds and under the cushion of the one chair I had to keep (yes, it is a washable Ikea chair).
I felt like Bill Murray with the gopher but by really thinking and looking I found them, in the kitchen! Yes they were coming through the bedroom walls from downstairs (patch all holes, close any unused outlets, watch those plug strips) and around the radiator and the closets (drench the floor here with Home Defense) but the major entry point was behind my kitchen cabinets (I drench back here with the Ortho Home Defense Max)! The apartment next door (on the kitchen side) has a horrible infestation and that is my main source, not the bedroom. They were biting my feet and legs as I did the dishes and worked on the computer.
Vacuum at least once a day, best if you do it morning and night & change the bag often, they are in there and so are the eggs!
Right now, I clean all the time, but I don't get bit. They are not going away entirley, I am sure, but I am dealing with it. I just think about the fact that I will not have to hire a truck to move, it is very freeing in an odd way.
P.S. This is a gross but good tip, don't squash them on the walls they make a terrible mess (too much blood). Keep some wide tape handy and pick the sucker up on it then squash him in between the tape. You won't have to scrub the walls at least, it will give you more time to vacuum.
By this too shall pass
We ended up with bedbugs about 6 months ago from a used mattress I got for my son. We've had exterminators in our house 2 times and all it seemed to do was make them mad. After the first spray we all woke up the next day with literally hundreds of bites. I can't sleep and am totally frustrated. We've thrown out all our mattresses and now all the new ones are infested again. I've probably done about 200 loads of laundry. I'm not going to spend another $500 for a professional exterminator that obviously doesn't know what they are doing, plus we got reactions from the chemicals they used. I'm at my wits end. I think $500 in Thyme should work!! (08/11/2006)
I recently moved in with some friends who have been in their apartment for over 2 years now. After 3 weeks in my room, I woke up 2 or 3 nights in a row with nearly 100 bug bites, inflamed and itchy. I googled them right away and as soon as I found out what they were, I flipped my mattress and box spring, only to find the bottom of the box spring torn and covered in blood with some adult bugs running around on the frame, which had feces on it. I found that spraying live ones directly with lice spray will kill them and I taped the dead ones to a piece of paper to show the exterminator. I threw out my box spring, covered my mattress in a plastic case and duct taped the zipper and started sleeping on the couch in another room. I would go into my bedroom late at night to find them on the floor, on the walls, under pictures and in their frames. I washed everything in my room 3 times so far
Put anything that can't be washed into the dryer on high, either dry clean clothes that arent too delicate and pillows/blankets that you just dont want to wash over and over again. Everything that isnt in use stays in giant black trash bags at all times. I threw out my carpet, my rollable guest mattress, most of my pillows and so far this ordeal has cost me over $1000. I tried tea tree oil, but they still came out at night. I put Vaseline on my bed legs and put the legs of my bed in bowls of water, but I read that they are crafty enough to crawl up to the ceiling and drop onto your bed. I have yet to try thyme, but since having 3 exterminator visits (it's been three weeks since the first bites), I havent seen any in a week. I want to believe that theyre gone, but I've read enough to believe that they arent. has anyone had similar results initially but found that they still return? (10/08/2006)
Thyme does not work. I put it around bed, under mattress etc., but they are still here. (11/01/2006)
I am going crazy cause I initially thought I had a bad case of mosquitoes in my apartment. Then my building manager told me the 4th floor was totally infested with bedbugs and now they have traveled to the 2nd floor where I live. The building manager has had the place exterminated twice and it helped for a second but now they are back with a vengeance. What is even more frustrating is that me and my neighbor are the only native born Americans in the building, and our other neighbors are getting mad and fighting the building management. They don't want to leave when the management needs us to leave the building for 4 hours to try to exterminate on a regular basis (every two weeks to get rid of the problem). It is driving me crazy and I can't afford to move. One of my neighbors is walking around with a big bite mark to the face and neck. It looks crazy. I am covering up my arms so my friends don't know that I have bedbugs or, even worse, an infectious disease. I am sleeping on my small love seat with my legs hanging over the arm. I will try the hair dryer, tea tree oil, and thyme. Thanks for all of the post everyone. I hope this works. (11/05/2006)
By Kevin in L.A.
Me and my cousin trapped some in a jar and killed them with garlic extract. We're going to try making a spray and using that. Also had to get rid of infected furniture. If you have to do this and you're strapped for money, try Craigslist to replace furniture. (01/20/2007)
I've been bitten for few weeks now. Kept thinking they were some breed of "silent mosquitoes". So sprayed aerosol every night. Saw 4 of the guys in a few weeks. Bathed all my guinea pigs and cats (thinking maybe the insects were ticks or fleas), it didn't work. Sleeping was starting to be a torture as the bites were super-itchy. Tonight, I'm gonna do a massive search and destroy! Gonna dig into every inch of the mattress and room, sticky tape them, squash, then vacuum.
BTW, it's difficult to find stuff like mattress covers, thyme, and all those solutions mentioned below. So I have no choice, but to use the conventional method of squash and vacum!
Apparently being obsessive with cleanliness doesn't stop em from appearing!
I didn't know Malaysia had them! (03/02/2007)
I sometimes feel like it is a nightmare 8 months being bitten alive. I had my home exterminated but I am still being bitten, I am going to try the thyme and constant prayer, I rarely go out I look like I have a disease bites all over my hands. (03/26/2007)
I too am plagued with the little monster I am trying to thyme as well. But I do have a little relief until they are all gone. It is an insect repellent from Avon. It is called Bug Guard Plus. I have used it for a week now.(05/12/2007)
By Ms. Stewart
Take everything from your living room to your bedroom. Buy a $9.00 hand pump sprayer and about $100 in rubbing alcohol, at least 70%. Spray the living room and wait about an hour. Then steam the the carpet thoroughly. Before reentering the items back into the living room, inspect well. Spray the furniture as well, rubbing alcohol does not leave residue.
Instead of moving infected items to the living room, move bedroom A into bedroom B. Lather, rinse, repeat. I am still not sure on the effect of the RA on the eggs. I did the same routine for about 2 weeks. So far we have been clear for about a year. (05/14/2007)
By No Longer A Problem
USE tea tree oil. We used it at a camp I was working at last year. Just put it on the edge of the mattress and I put some on the tip of my socks. It worked like a miracle. No more bites. (05/21/2007)
The only way to truly get rid of bed bugs is to have a professional exterminator come and spray for the bugs. In the US, when DDT was used in the 1960s the bugs were basically killed off. Now that DDT is not available, the pests are back. The ONLY proven pesticide that can effectively kill bed bugs is available to those exterminators who are certified to use it.
Also, bed bugs are not only in the bed. They are everywhere. They do not jump, but they crawl. You will find them in your carpet, lampshades, in the drawers on your dresser, your sofa, etc. The entire apartment or house should be treated. (06/26/2007)
Make a paste of activated charcoal (you can get this at healthfood stores) and water. If you want, you can add some goldenseal (also at healthfood stores). Put it on a bandage and cover your bites. You may need a lot of bandages. This is an inexpensive way to manage the itchiness. the charcoal draws out toxins that cause the itch and the goldenseal is an herb that acts as a natural antibiotic. Fabric bandages allow for movement and stick better and are less likely to allow the charcoal to make a mess once it dries under the bandage. Leave the bandages on overnight. The swelling should reduce dramatically. If they're still very itchy, do this again for the next night/day. But you want to change them daily. This should make the swelling gone and the redness. I hope this will help someone. (07/03/2007)
If you don't find a bunch of dead ones around, it's an old wives tale so don't waste your time or money.
By sheer accident because I wanted to wash my floor before the exterminators came I found out that Murphy's oil soap kills them on contact. I have lung problems so I just wanted a strong soap that wouldn't cause difficulty for me when sleeping that night.
So I mopped up the bedroom floor with 1/2 cup in a gallon of water (after vacuuming). When I rinsed the mop, there were DOZENS of bed bugs in it, even though I hadn't been bitten for about two weeks (since I began to vacuum regularly with high power shop vac and sealed all my clothes.)
Then I soaked down the baseboards with a scrub brush which flushed out more of them from the cracks and killed them. Oil soap may only kill them on contact but it definitely kills them as does hot water/heat.
For those of you advocating *against* exterminators. If you haven't lived with these horrid pests you are in no position to give advice. No one's body can heal when one is woken up constantly from these little bloodsucking vampires. I've been chronically exhausted from lack of sleep and that's more damaging than a week of pesticides!
I did some research on bedbugs and found that rubbing alcohol works a lot better than some commercial stuff. It does help to get rid of the items infested, never mind the cost. Better a good nights sleep than having to live with things. I can live with house mice, roaches, and sometimes a few flies, but dang if I can live with bed bugs! Richard Tymes
By ricHard Tymes
I had a serious infestation and searched the web. I found Thwart bed bug spray works and it was shipped overnight. kills on contact I was amazed. I was a little skeptic. They also have a money back guarantee but so far this spray really works. you won't be sorry! I still cant believe how well it works. I thought it was one of those products that are falsely advertised this is the real thing. It is also very safe. I think the main ingredient is tea tree oil (10/10/2007)
I just joined and am not sure how to post a reply, so will give it a try.
Cathy asked whether she could have bed bugs and not see them.
Yes, you could have these horror bugs, and not see them. If you have been bitten then you may not swell from the bites, not see any bites, and you may not know you have them until there are "tons".
I just recently got my house infected. A friend gave me a pocket book and a few weeks later I found a dead bed bug in the book. She already had bed bugs and did not know it. (her apartment now has been fumigated)
So I started looking, saw not one thing. three weeks later I had a few bites, was extremely shocked, and have done hours and hours of reading on the internet.
I took my bed apart, my bureaus apart, my closet apart, my everything washable into very hot water, and hot dryer. Saw nothing for the longest time.
I threw out loads of stuff. I put plastic around my mattress, and sealed it. I bought a hand held steamer, and steam everything possible. I am spraying with rubbing alcohol.
Then last week I found two young ones, nymphs. they were extremely small, and colorless, and I would not have seen them in a million years if I had not been cleaning and looking for them carefully. They move very very fast, just zoom, but I managed to squash them both.
After much reading and research I am thoroughly convinced that these bugs, especially the nymphs can be carried from home to home quite easily. they usually are active only at night, but if you disturb them they will run away very quickly, and perhaps even hide in a seam in your shoe.
They hide in very very small spaces, such as cracks in wood, and seams in linens, quilts, etc. the nymphs being colorless would be very difficult to see.
I have just bought some food grade diatomaceous earth and am placing that all over. I understand that they just love hardwood floors (there are usually some tiny tiny cracks in wood floors, and they hide there and lay eggs there. and I have old oak floors all over except in the kitchen. I am placing the diatomaceous earth all over the floor, it is like a fine flour, and it does seep in the cracks.
I am very upset as I had a recent heart attack and cannot do much work in cleaning, washing. even worrying.
Bed bugs are on the upswing all over, it doesn't matter how clean you are. there still seems to be some shame attached. How can that be, for crying out loud. These things will even hide in radios, telephones, etc. Try and get rid of that, right? You can bring some home from traveling, from a bus, from a second hand store. Be warned.
PS: After all the cleaning, I got a bite last night!
Forgot to say:
Marley asked how long does it take for bed bugs to suffocate once they are sealed in plastic bags.
Hundreds of web sites from University entomology departments state that an adult bed bug can live for a year without a meal. (10/25/2007)
Seal up any cracks or holes that the bed bugs may come or leave through
Everything that you can, wash and dry it on "High".
After the clothes, linens, etc.. are washed, put them into garbage bags and seal them tightly. Keep a couple weeks of clothes in some separate bags, so you will have clothes to wear. Wash those often. The rest, put them in storage or somewhere away from your bug problem.
Everything else you can't wash, place in garbage bags and, just before sealing the bags, spray a bunch of Raid or another powerful bug spray into it. Seal immediately after spraying.
Put those bags away from the infestation.
Pay an exterminator to get rid of them. Despite what you try, you will not completely get rid of bed bugs on your own. When you are looking for an exterminator, get one who will continue to come back every couple of weeks until the problem is gone. This could take months. In other words. They should guarantee their work.
The exterminator should be willing to turn over every piece of furniture to inspect and spray it thoroughly. If they say they don't need to do that, they are wrong!
After your bed has been sprayed, cover the mattress and box spring with those mattress covers. You don't need to throw away your bed!
Take some bowls that can handle lots of weight in them. Fill the inside with very sticky, double sided tape. Place each leg of your bed and couch inside a bowl. Wrap fly paper around each leg of your bed and couch. This should help keep them from climbing up from the floor.
Place your pillows and sheets in the dryer for a half-an-hour or so before going to bed each night.
Don't let your sheets or blankets touch the floor at any time.
Move your bed and couch away from the wall and any night or end tables that they may usually touch.
Make sure the exterminator continues to come several times even after you think there are no bugs left.
Only after several weeks of knowing that your place is bug free, you can start taking the items from the garbage bags and put them back. (11/12/2007)
I have bed bugs. I think a pet brought them in but who knows. Anyway I have caught a couple and have been bitten. What can I do to get rid of them? There has to be something out that I can use that is fairly safe.
Timothy from Gallitzin, PA
I know rosemary will get rid of lice so maybe it will work on bed bugs. We make a spray of water and rosemary to spray on our hair. (11/26/2007)
I've just seen a program on T.V. about bed bugs, they said there are no products on the market to get rid of them, they said you have to call in a professional (bug exterminator) or get rid of the mattress. I think it was on Oprah. Good Luck! (11/27/2007)
My wife and I ran into these nasty suckers on our honeymoon in a very upscale resort near Playa Del Carmen in Mexico. Our room had a few small bugs on the walls and ceilings (even in the day), but we didn't think anything of it, until our third night, when I smashed one on the bed and it streaked blood on the sheets. Luckily, the management moved us to a different building that wasn't invested.
After we got home we left all our luggage in the car, parked away from the house and researched these things. Here's what we did to prevent those bugs from invading our home:
It's been 3 years, with no bugs, so it must have worked. Unfortunately, now we're paranoid and check out all hotel rooms before we bring our luggage inside. Tripadvisor.com is good for checking out if a hotel has a bed bug problem. (01/19/2008)
I think Clorox and rubbing alcohol kills the bug without any doubt. I was told by my exterminator to spray rubbing alcohol whenever I see bed bugs. What I did was spray the entire room with Clorox and rubbing alcohol and its been 6 months I have not yet seen any or got bitten. (02/07/2008)
Well, I recently found that my apartment has bed bugs. I live in a place with over 100 apartments in one building so I know I'm not the only one with them. My mom told me to try rubbing alcohol and that really works, kills em dead on contact! I sprayed everything with it and man, I'm telling you, it works. Put it in a spray bottle and get spraying! (03/19/2008)
Try Steri-Fab for mattresses and fabric, and Sprayaway's Good Night is effective for mattresses, cracks in walls and floors, undersides of wood tables/furniture, behind picture frames, and nearly anywhere else the little buggers might be hiding. These are products that you can buy at a hardware store that are safe and effective. If you have pets, keep them out of the area while you spray, and while the products dry (they dry quickly). Also, get rid of your clutter - it's a play land and a Bat Cave for the bedbugs.
A home needs to get clean and organized to get bedbug free, but cleaning and throwing out furniture alone won't do it. Neither will thyme. You need to clean, to spray, and to keep it up 2-4 times a month for at least several months. Only products that specifically list bedbugs actually affect bedbugs. Nothing that says "most insects" but doesn't list bedbugs specifically will work. Treat any pet bedding. They usually don't go after domestic dogs and cats, but can travel on them.
<p.Also, to clean the smashed bugs off your wall, if your infestation is really bad, or they're running from the insecticide, use rubbing alcohol. It lifts the nasty right off. I've been fighting the little monsters for months now. Can't afford a professional, particularly one that might fail, which it seems happens a lot. I think I'm winning the war. I usually don't see them, but one has to stay vigilant. It takes a while to wipe them out completely. (04/20/2008)
My husband and I have had bed bugs, too. It was awful! Here in downtown SF it is quite a problem. We love our apartment but with a 100 units in the building it's impossible to control what comes in and you are very affected by your neighbors.
That said, we are now bed-bug free. In SF there are department of health regulations that have certain requirements of what the landlords must legally provide for bedbugs outbreaks, and responsibilities for the tenants. I highly recommend each of you find out what is legally required in the situation if you are renting.
Our apartment was sprayed twice, my husband and I packed up everything we own, washed everything and put it all in plastic bags in our kitchen and bathroom while everything that wasn't packed was sprayed. I also clean regularly with lavender, which is supposed to help - makes us feel better anyway, and we burn lavender candles often. We are still so vigilant.
The bed is a couple feet from the wall and the legs have duct tape around them with the sticky side out so nothing can crawl up on the bed. It is hard because the situation needs to be a cooperative effort in apartments and it seems that isn't happening as much as it should.
Several cities have successfully taken charge of the bed bug problem and I think reading what they have done is helpful. Either way, if your city has no regulations, maybe look up SF or NY regulations and try to implement them in your own apartment. Also, contact pest companies in the large areas that are more experienced with bed bugs and see what they recommend. I hope you are all successful and eliminate these terrible bugs from your lives! They are miserable! Best wishes! (05/23/2008)
Kleen Free works! I live in a apartment building, I never have been bitten but my daughter was several times. I think I just do not react to the bites. Believe me I tried everything, washing and sealing you name it. I tried the Kleen Free because its non toxic, you spray it all over even on the mattress, you even wash the clothes in it. It really did kill them and after a few months of constant spraying I got rid of them.
Its been over one year since my daughter has been bitten. Guess what, their back! That's because there are so many people moving in and out of the building! I believe their bringing them back in. Now I will have to go through this all over again. Type in Kleen Free, its by Natural Ginesis. Good Luck!
I am going through this as well, and I have done hours of research. I would like to share some very helpful tips, since many landlords are not very knowledgeable about bedbugs. My landlord seems to think sprinkling some type of powder on the floor will eliminate the problem, ha! Any hoo, here's some of my tips for dealing with bedbugs:
Please remember that if you really want to rid the bugs from your home, some form of pesticide will most likely be necessary, along with some of the tips I just mentioned. Bedbugs are also resistant to many sprays on the market, I once doused one in Raid to no avail.
I hope my tips are helpful to someone, isolating my bed was the best thing I could have done, because, if nothing else, I get a good worry free sleep. Thanks for reading! (06/21/2008)
Sprayway Good Night took care of my bed bug problem in one usage. (12/04/2008)
By Robert H.
Get a Shark steamer. We moved into a house that we had redone and hadn't had the problem before, and all of a sudden my children were getting bitten up like crazy. They were in my couch, ahhh. I researched and found that steaming them works. I am still finding a couple but not like before. I just continue to steam every other week until the problem is gone. You really need to check good, I practically ripped my couch apart but they were there, hiding in weird little corners. Also, vacuum everyday with hose attachment on, then throw outside in a bag. I am determined and know I will rid them. (01/15/2009)
I have bed bugs and my room has been sprayed once, is this enough?
By Martinbt58 from London
We have been dealing with bedbugs for nearly 6 weeks, and are finally getting on top of the problem. We have not thrown everything out, we have not gotten rid of our mattresses, initially, we did. It didn't help. We replaced them, bought enclosure "bags" from Walmart, and Rid (lice bedding spray) from Walmart.
Then, we bought caulk to most closely match the colors in the room. I used Liquid Nails for the nail holes, but my husband was mad (it was easier for me than the caulking gun). I found that Clorox Cleaning Spray with Bleach (you want the bleach, I wanted a name I knew) kills the suckers on contact. We are on bottle 3. Buy a few large plastic totes/tubs that will support your miscellaneous items, your books, papers, etc.
Here is what we have done: remove everything you can from one room at a time. You cannot effectively treat the entire house in one fell swoop. Pack up one room, remove stuff from off the wall (I ended up throwing out some wood picture frames and keeping the pictures), if the item is large, trash bag it and duct tape it securely. Remove curtains, all material, and take immediately to washer/dryer. If clean already, then simply dry for 20-30 minutes on high.
Immediately remove it from dryer and seal it in tub/tote or remove to off-site location in trash bags. Vacuum all surfaces. Pull drawers out and set on floor, if bed frame is on floor use plastic dishes and water/mineral oil/whatever you want. Anything liquid seems to work to surround legs. If mattress sits on wooden frame, like our captains bed, get rid of it and go to a wooden leg or metal legged frame like a Hollywood which is what we went to. Once the room is vacuumed, take time to vacuum the rest of house, then get rid of the vacuum bag to an outside dumpster.
Return to the room with your Clorox cleaning spray. Spray all surfaces. We found what looked like mold at the old wooden window (we live in a house, we don't have the option of relocating), and turns out that is where the infestation was. We sprayed all over the bedroom, along the baseboard, the windows (top, bottom, inside, etc), the doorways (the jamb, all trim where it connected to the wall, etc.), the walls all around the room (we do not have carpeting in the house, this would have added to our nightmare). We then turned off the lights, closed the door, and slept in another room.
Before daylight, we opened the bedroom door, armed with our Clorox, and sprayed anything we saw that moved, and then sprayed again all surfaces. During the next 2 days, we caulked all cracks, crevices, nail holes, baseboard areas, around outlet plates, etc. We could see the dead bugs still stuck to the wall.
The next morning, we washed the entire room with Magic Erase and hot water (we wore gloves). We then shut up the room, closed the door, lights off, and waited a few hours. We entered the room, blinded the buggers, and sprayed the ones we saw, watching to see if they headed anywhere in particular to hide. We sprayed the places around where they were, and left again for the night. Blinding them is key. You will see them, kill them, and be done before they have time to crawl away. We went from over 50 the first time, to 27 to kill, and this weekend our room is bug free (we haven't killed any in there yesterday or today).
This past week, we started on my daughter's room, doing the same thing. If there is something I don't care if I keep, I pitched it. If there is something sentimental, I have packed it away. My room looks bare, her room looks bare, my living room is full of totes/tubs. There have not been any sightings in my living room or kitchen, so we are "living" there.
My daughter and I have seen 2 in her room today. It is now caulked, sprayed (her futon got sprayed with the RID then promptly enclosed in a Queen size "bag"), and has been left bare. We will continue to clean, having caulked the bedrooms, hallways, bathroom, hall closet, etc. while doing the rest of the 2 rooms. We will continue to keep the Clorox handy, and to watch for infestation. These things will die in their baby-stages if we do not "feed" them. My bed is not touching the wall, it is setting in water (the mineral oil evaporated quick and dish washing liquid/drop), my bedding does not touch.
I have a bath towel covering some of the window. My shelves have been caulked to the wall, my room smells "clean". I have not cried today. We will leave my daughter's room and ours bare for the rest of the month. We did bedbug foggers from Lowes and they don't work. We used bug spray that contains permethrin, it didn't work. The Clorox kills on contact and the caulk has them sealed in the walls hopefully to die, but this isn't a one-time application situation. We will be monitoring our rooms for weeks to come. If your neighbors have them, be extra secure about sealing the baseboard and nail holes in the shared walls. You can survive this. (09/13/2009)
Is there a fumigator to get rid of bedbugs? Does anyone have advice to get rid of them?
Lucy from Silver Spring, MD
My understanding from reading about it online and various other news sources is that you need to call a professional to get rid of those.
They are resistant to anything that you can use over the counter, and you won't be able to kill them by yourself.
Professionals can use a stronger poison.
Good luck. (10/31/2008)
You can use a powder that will dehydrate them if you are doing it yourself, see: badbedbugs.com But the reason why sites recommend professionals is their experience. The longer you wait, the more they multiply. (11/01/2008)
My daughter had a terrible time with bedbugs in NY. She had an exterminator, but they came back. She finally found a spray on line that worked. But, she also got rid of her mattress and bedframe. They live in the cracks of the walls and floor or furniture. You can cover them outside with black plastic and hope for a period of heat to kill them. She finally moved to LA. She left all her things outside in the yard and sprayed them before bringing it in and hasn't had a problem since.
My best friend just went through this one and it was awful. You need the professional, it will be done over a month to 6 weeks in once a week treatments, I think it was around $800. You need to start washing every piece of cloth in your house in at least 140 degree water, and then bagging it in plastic to protect it from the little buggers. That means bedding, clothing, window treatments, etc. I know this is a major pain, good luck getting rid of them. (11/03/2008)
Wondercide gets rid of bedbugs, just spray it on your mattress and under the bed. It is great for other pest problems to and it is total safe for you, your family, and pets (even kittens and newborns). (11/22/2008)
I had a mild bed bug infestation that I thought was over a couple of months ago, but I found one on my comforter this morning. This situation started back in October. Since then, the exterminator has made 2 visits in October and November. I've washed all my bedding, clothes, and everything in my closets. I've also plugged up all the holes and cracks in my walls with caulk. I've even been dusting diatomaceous earth (food grade) all over my bed frame, walls, and couch.
I haven't gotten a bite since November so I thought I had successfully gotten rid of them. Now 2 months later and they're back. What am I doing wrong?
By Amy from Brooklyn
Forgot to also mention my mattress and pillows are now in bedbug-proof covers. (01/27/2010)
I think I remember reading on this site that someone recommended sprinkling borax, the stuff you use in your wash. Sprinkle it around, leave on as long as possible or overnight and then vacuum.
I don't know that much about it but on vermanaters, they said the stuff used to kill they is basically superglue fumes. The one thing they did say that would kill them instantly, the coldness of a room will kill them. But with it being winter, do you want your bedroom to be a freezer? To fight the curse is the thing you need to think of. They said they can't take the temp change and they it puts them into shock and then you just get to clean up the little bodies. Hope it helps. (01/29/2010)
I need information on fighting bed bugs in my apartment in Los Angeles.
By Rae Ann<a> from Los Angeles, CA Feedback: Kerosene is the best answer outside of getting a new mattress. Kerosene is what they used in the old days also. Beds were made from straw, feathers and anything that would make a soft bed. This attracted bugs over time too. Kerosene evaporates. Leave windows open. You can also clean other surfaces with diluted kerosene in the bedroom to make double sure the critters don't want to be there. (01/22/2010) By Carly34 I have never had bedbugs, but I heard that you have to have an exterminator to get rid of them and there is nothing in the stores you can buy to get rid of them. (01/25/2010) By sickandsexy
RE: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs
RE: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs
Kerosene is the best answer outside of getting a new mattress. Kerosene is what they used in the old days also. Beds were made from straw, feathers and anything that would make a soft bed. This attracted bugs over time too. Kerosene evaporates. Leave windows open. You can also clean other surfaces with diluted kerosene in the bedroom to make double sure the critters don't want to be there. (01/22/2010)
I have never had bedbugs, but I heard that you have to have an exterminator to get rid of them and there is nothing in the stores you can buy to get rid of them. (01/25/2010)
What are some ways I can get rid of bedbugs?
By Sheri from Spanish Fork, UT
There is this wonderful pesticide that works and is nontoxic to humans. It's called "Orange Guard" and it's made out of orange peels. You can use it in the kitchen and even where children play or where babies could crawl.
Bedbugs can crawl up your beds legs, so you need to put the bed's legs in to cans or pails of soap water. They also can hid in places where you would never suspect, like inside of baseboard moldings or under dressers etc, then come out later after you've sprayed and though you got rid of them. Many people hire a dog that's trained to smell the bedbugs so they know exactly where to spray.
<img src="http://img.thrfun.com/images/database/tff78325328.JPG" width="117" height="303" alt="RE: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs" />
Once a month, vacuum your mattress. Then mix 1 cup white vinegar in a spray bottle and fill with water. Spray your sheets every morning and let set a few minutes before making the bed. You may also spray your bed-skirt, drapes and your bedspread once the bed is made.
You could also use a spray bottle with 1 bottle of rubbing alcohol and fill with water. Spray the same way. You can alternate. You also get a clean fresh scent in the air.
Source: 1000 ways to use vinegar for uncommon uses
By Emarty from Boyd, Tx
The only thing I have read is that they die when heated to 140 degrees F. (04/18/2010)
How does one get rid of bed bugs apart from the wet soap trick?
By Adrian from Beograd, Serbia
I've heard (through the ThriftyFun site) there is an organic product called diatomaceous earth. I don't know if it's available in your area, but I hear gardening centers in the US have it. From what I've heard, it's quite effective. It apparently works by "drying out" the bugs, sucking away their moisture until only a dry husk remains.
Logic tells me you could sprinkle this all over your bed first thing in the morning and vacuum it away in the evening. I wish I had better information to offer. However, if you search the internet for this phrase, "diatomaceous earth", you should be able to locate the product.
One caution: Others who recommend the product advise to get only "garden grade", not "pool grade". (07/20/2010)
There are tons of entries on this, and I don't think that anything easy is the answer. My mother, who is 80, said that everyone had bedbugs until DDT was introduced. If thyme or soap or other home remedies worked, I am sure that they would not be the problem that they are. Of course, one cannot use DDT anymore, but I think a professional exterminator with experience with bedbugs is the best solution. (07/28/2010)
The main problem with bedbugs is they are persistent blood suckers causing serious itching and sleeplessness. No sleep for several days makes one tired and scared to go to sleep. The only way to deal with them is by being persistent and kill them.
I was infested for the past six weeks and got the apartment sprayed by an exterminator two days ago. I got infected by my neighbor who moved from Ohio with bugs, 4months ago. I was with less sleep for more than a week and last night I slept like a baby. One spraying doesn't eliminate the problem, if heavily infested. It requires two more visits, 2 and 3 weeks later on. The exterminator may not have killed all the eggs, as he does the spraying with sight and intuition, and it's difficult to spot all possible hidings and egg laying.
The mentally draining part is preparing the house for exterminator visit. Believe me it's tiring. Strip beds and wash all sheets, pillow cases, mattress pads, blankets, comforters, and bed skirts. Remove everything from bedroom closets and dresser drawers and place in plastic bags. Remove headboard and bed frame; remove all curtains and wash. Vacuum all floors in infected rooms; vacuum couches, chairs, closets, and closet shelves, shoes, and dresser drawers. After vacuuming throw away the vacuum bag sealed in a plastic bag. After doing all this, I felt like I should end my life.
Discard all clutter: cardboard boxes, newspapers, stacks of magazines, shopping bags, plastic bags, and stacks of old clothes.
Now the physically tiring part. Access is needed to baseboards around every room. Move all things touching the walls to 2 feet from the baseboards in all rooms. All rooms should be vacuumed thoroughly. I was so tired and with no sleep, I wanted to die or walkaway from it all.
Bed bugs are a serious problem. They attack you, not when you're moving, but when you're quiet and asleep. In your sofa they attack you when you're engrossed in the movie plot and are not moving. On the computer table at the keyboard they wait for you and if your hand or legs are not moving, they attack you. They are very persistent. Once infested, they know exactly where all the places you'll be: sofa, computer table and chair, dining table, etc. and wait for you. They colonize all over. You can't outsmart them. If you're infested in bed, and move to the couch, you may sleep OK for a day or two, but very soon they'll be there in large numbers. If you move to the spare 3rd room, you may sleep OK for 2-3days; but on day 4 they are there, too. These little blood-thirsty Draculas are looking for food, and they chase you all over. They are usually not found in kitchen or bathroom. Why because in kitchen one is cooking and fidgeting and to the bathroom it's a quick visit.
The important thing is the diagnosis and how soon you do it to contain the problem. It took me 6 weeks to diagnose the itching problem as bed bug related. 6 weeks ago, the first week I noticed itching on feet and hands, real serious itching to the point of peeling off the skin. I thought it was poison ivy and treated it. Second week, I thought it was a food allergy itching and was contemplating Benadryl. 3rd week, I went for a stomach purge with a purgative; 4th week I was on vacation in the mountains. This is when I noticed no itching and sound sleep. Wow. I came back home, and the 5th week the itching started again. This is when I have decided to go see a doctor. In sixth week, one night I was tremendously itchy at 4AM and got up and noticed bedbugs crawling into the crevices on the bed. I immediately went to the living room and slept on the floor and got up well rested and was very happy. I reported the problem to the landlord and slept on the floor for the 2nd night also, peacefully. The 3rd night was when I noticed that they are on the floor carpet, too. I even slept in the bathroom.
How to find if you're infested: Did you notice serious urge to itch on the exposed parts of the body like feet and hands. If you sleep without a shirt then on your back, too. Is this itching and urge to scratch more active between 2AM and 4AM. They are very active at this time of the day, because you're in deep sleep in those hours. If itching urge wakes you up, switch the light on or use a flash light and look for bugs running to their hiding place. They usually hide under the fitted mattress case, seams, and crevices.
How to deal with them? I used isopropyl alcohol (91%) in a spray bottle and sprayed on bedding and other cloth items. Instant death. For hard surfaces, computer table chair, coffee table, dining table and chairs I used Clorox spray with bleach, it's strong and kills them. The bed is the main place where 90% of the bugs live. Why because you spend 8 hours sleeping there, quietly. Of course you also spend 8 hours near the computer and TV, but you're moving on the swivel chair or changing the channels on TV or going to the restroom, dining, etc. Orange Guard also works.
Bed bugs are persistent and you can get rid of them by being persistent. When you notice one switch off the TV and cell phone, and start spraying. Follow them to their hiding place and kill eggs and babies. Even after professional services, if you notice one, search and destroy. The only way to get rid off them is by killing them, their eggs, and extended families. Rubbing alcohol and Clorox cleaner with bleach was recommended by other people on the internet. The exterminator has access to stronger sprays, which he used on: the bed, bed seams, box spring and all corners, all baseboards in all rooms, computer table and chair, couch and sofa and also on cushion seams, and carpet. I feel OK now, until the survivors regroup and attack. This will be dealt in 2 weeks and the final spray is in another 3 weeks. I've noticed that my computer chair made me itch and it has lots of crevices, so I threw it away. I threw my pillows and fitted sheets away. As per the recommendation of pest control guy I've purchased from Walmart, Allerease Bed Bug Allergy Protection, which is a zippered microfiber mattress protector. (see attached picture) My bed and box spring are now encapsulated in a zippered bag. This is precaution against the eggs which might hatch in the mattress and boxspring and might reinfest. Make sure it says bed bug protection on the zippered case.
All this physical and mental strain makes one depressed, tired, and angry and this coupled with sleeplessness creates a phobia. I'm getting over it and slept the past 2 days, happily.
<img src="http://img.thrfun.com/images/database/tff32911684.JPG" width="360" height="491" alt="RE: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs" />
If you don't want to hire an exterminator, you could do the following: Get spray bottles of alcohol and Clorox (see pic below) and also Orange Guard. See my other below long post on how to prepare for extermination. Get rid of all the clutter.
The first place to clean is the bed, where 90% of the bugs are found. Slowly lift fitted sheets and notice bugs and little bugs and eggs. Spray isopropyl 91% or use Orange Guard. (Don't use Clorox on cloth items and sofas; it bleaches them.) Cover all 4 sides of the bed and top and bottom seams. Spray thoroughly even if you don't see bugs, because it's difficult to see eggs. Do the same for boxspring. Put all sheets, fitted sheets, pillow cases, and all blankets in a big trash bag. Wash these at a Washeteria washing machine and not in home machines. The washeteria has professional, industrial strength machines and your machine can't match it. Wash and dry at hot. Spray on baseboards. Spray on computer chair and table. Spray on sofa and cushions, seams, and all over. Wash all clothes you think are infested in hot. That's it.
Encase the bed and boxspring in bedbug cases (see picture of my bed and boxspring, enclosed in bedbug case, from Walmart). See pic in my other long post for Bedbug case pic. I also applied Vaseline to the 4 legs, to discourage bugs from crawling up. Any questions, please ask. (08/30/2010)
<img src="http://img.thrfun.com/images/database/tff84094420.JPG" width="400" height="300" alt="RE: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs" />
Here's the picture of isopropyl alcohol 91% and Clorox with bleach. These sprays kill them instantly. (08/30/2010)
<img src="http://img.thrfun.com/images/database/tff81041997.JPG" width="400" height="300" alt="RE: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs" />