Bedbugs in the building(5 posts)
I have gone through most of this site and the forums as well. I have found similar questions answered (very grateful this site exists; I had no idea how ignorant I was) but I still have one.
I live in an apartment building on the same floor as my best friend, although her apartment is quite far down the hall (there are at least 10 other apartments between hers and mine). Yesterday she spotted a bed bug in her apartment. I was actually looking for information on tenants rights and such when I came across this site. She asked if she could sleep on my couch for awhile until pest control could come in, and luckily I said no, which I'm relieved about now that I know they can hitchhike.
She comes over at least a couple times a week (not spending the night) so I am worried that she's brought them over already. I followed the advice found here and checked the bed and frame quite thoroughly, but I know that they can be hard to see so just because I didn't find anything doesn't mean I'm in the clear. I will check light sockets and electrical fixtures and my nightstand tomorrow as well.
She also disposed of her mattress and of course dragged it through the hall. I just gave her some of the info I found on this site as well as the address, but I'm kinda worried that it's too late.
I know hers and every apartment adjacent to hers should be inspected/treated. I'm wondering if mine should be as well, although I know it could be difficult to justify that to the manager since my apartment is in no way physically connected to hers.
I'm a pretty anxious/paranoid person. I really don't think I'll be able to sleep tonight.
Kelly...Your apt. should be inspected. Your friend, by dragging her mattress down the hall has already compromised the area. There are some proactive steps you can and imo, should do. First, you should buy the high quality zippered mattress, boxspring, and pillow covers from National Allergy Catalog, then you should buy a hand bellows dusting tool, and some DE ...and unscrew all of your electrical socket and litely puff some DE into ALL of the sockets..and around ALL of your baseboards and around all of your exposed pipes underneath your bathroom and kitchen sinks. You should take some double sided Frost King carpet tape and place it carefully around all of the heating or AC vents that ajoin your apt to any others. You should clean your floors with a good soaking of Murphys Oil soap. Also you can dust some DE around your entrance door , litely...These are the things that I would do. If only your friends apt. is treated then there is a decent likihood that the bed bugs will travel into adjoining apts...so rather than sit and wait for this to happen...take these minor proactive steps...Also, start to clear out any unnecessary clutter from your apt. This is a good time to assess what your need and don't need. As for letting your friend into your place...This is an aspect of bed bugs that the media doesn't write about...The social stigma...the fear....I personally would not let her into my apt...unless she comes in barefooted with no pocketbook and only a white tee shirt and shorts..and even then I would spray her legs with some Kleen Free......I went thru an infestation so consider the source....Keep asking us questions..we will all do our best to help, but you should be speaking with your landlord...even turn them onto this site...but ALL apts should bei inspected...
If you get DE make sure it is food grade.
There is a FAQ on protecting (covering) the bed and pillows which should help in case they are there, they won't get into the mattress.
But I would have a PCO inspect thoroughly before you do any DE-ing. Some PCOs won't work with you if you've self-treated, even with DE. And knowing if you have bed bugs, before treating in that way, would be useful.
Thanks for the advice, guys. I spent about three or four hours yesterday with a flashlight inspecting every inch of my bed, bed frame, ceiling and night stand. I even unscrewed the electrical outlet plate and found absolutely no trace of anything. My boyfriend thought I was insane. I think the carpet tape idea is brilliant, even in general- is there any right or wrong way to do it? Should I cover the bed frame with it too? Definitely going to be putting it around the outlets and such as well.
Like I said I found absolutely no trace of feces or bugs (thanks to this great site I know what to look for) and am have had no bites of any kind, but obviously that doesn't mean there aren't any there. I will definitely be keeping a close eye on it.
Kelly..You are welcome...All of us here have one goal in mind. That is to eradicate bed bugs..first step is getting rid of them in your apt. Did you speak to the PCO about dusting some food grade DE into your outlets?? The hand bellows tool is cheap about 12 dollars ..its such a useful tool..Also you should purchase a Carson bug Magnifier..it too is only about 10 dollars..Its a good little tool used to id any thing you think might be a bed bug..and allows you to rule out what is not...I once freaked out because I found a what I thought was a bug in the cup of mineral oil that the bed leg was placed in, I looked at it under the Carson and saw that it was a pc. of lint...So this little tool can be very useful....I would definitely dust inside all of the outlets ...esp. given the circumstances of your bldg. As for the carpet tape. Make sure its the Frost King Brand...the generic stuff is no good..Frost King has a nice tight adhesive and the whiteness of it makes things so easy to spot on it...I had taped a plastic tarp to the floor and then put my mattress in the center of the tarp...( on the wooden floor )..I would definitely be very methodical and put it all around any and all vents and ducts that are adjoining..and around your smoke detectors.. Have you covererd your mattresses??? Did you buy any Kleen Free? Its a war with these monsters..Also can you buy some caulk and a caulk gun and seal up any large cracks??? Also you should dust your window ledges with the DE..and inspect very thoroughly any paintings or posters you have hanging on your walls..Oh to answer your question..I wouldn't use the tape to cover the bed frame...you should buy the zippered covers for your boxspring and mattress...What you could do with your bed is to litely smear some vaseline in the legs of your bed...you must be very careful as to not let your blankets touch the floor..bed bugs have the ability to climb up a blanket...How have you isolated your bed ??? Have you spoken to your PCO????? Deb
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