bedbugs and relocating overseas in a week(2 posts)
Three months after the first infestation bedbugs seem to have returned. This time 2/3 of us (vs just me before) are getting bites—the building has a history of bedbugs, and I'm guessing they were either reintroduced or are just moving between floors. (The apartment above us got them a few weeks after we first exterminated). We are both getting bitten sporadically (for me just one set in the 2 or so weeks since I first noticed), which makes us hope the infestation is light. We have however seen live adult bugs both times (positive ID by PCO first time, and one caught last week is exactly the same), which seems unusual. I want to attribute it to the odd hours I keep (I freelance, and tend to work through the night and sleep from morning to midday), but are live bugs a sign of a heavier infestation? Unfortunately don't have a picture that I could post to ID.
Either way, in just over week, possibly two, I will be packing up my things and relocating back to the middle east (I do not have the option of staying longer, and it may be impossible to change my flight). Good timing, perhaps, as I've already been doing my best to pare down my accumulated belongings. I am however terrified of introducing bedbugs to my parents' home, and want to take every precaution possible to avoid this. I will be taking everything (largely books and clothes) in suitcases, possibly shipping boxes if necessary but that's something I'd like to avoid. So, some questions:
—Assuming I can get hold of them in time, would you recommend getting DDVP strips for my suitcases? Does anyone know if they are even allowed in checked baggage?
—Daytime temperatures there are currently 90-100, and will approach 115 from May onwards. I plan to leave my suitcases (opened? things taken out?) outside for a bit—how long should I be doing this for with these slightly lower temperatures?
—With books and papers, I have been painstakingly paging through, then sealing them. Is it however a good idea to leave them out so that (first) they get sprayed? The PCO is coming in tomorrow, and I'll be around for the follow up a week later, too.
—How can everything else that cannot be washed/dried—makeup, art supplies and jewelry mostly—be treated? Time and money wise, a Packlite isn't a possibility. We currently have an old gas oven with a lowest temperature of 200—could this be used instead, or would it be a fire risk? Would inspection and possibly a wipe down (what with?) suffice? Will a week in the freezer be long enough (and would it ruin makeup, inks and paints?)
—Do eggs stick to fabrics/surfaces, or do they just rest on them
—How can I treat my laptop, given that the battery cannot be removed? Nb I leave it on almsot all the time, so don't know if the heat makes it safe(r)?
This is a lot of questions - any advice would be much appreciated!
Clothes/fabrics Run thru dryer and seal
Makeup/paint containers that close: inspect, wipe, dip in warm soapy water, if you wish.
Jewelry hot, soapy water/inspect
I would not use the oven. The lack of control and fear of overcooking may cause you to skimp on time to penetrate. Consider alternatives.
Experts tell us that sunlight is not reliable, even in hot climates.
BB prefer wood and fabrics to harbor and to paste their eggs. Hard surfaces and electronics less so. Your laptop is probably of less concern than it s bag.
Your pco is not likely to spray books directly.
If you're taking suspect items home, pack them sealed and separate from your safe things. Security might crack it open and you wouldn't want to contaminate the safe stuff. Have your family bring you bags to seal your stuff. You can then weigh your options in your home country.
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