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DE health concerns [expert input on Cimexa/borax treatment needed]

(2 posts)
  1. concernedabouthome

    Joined: Jul '17
    Posts: 1


    Posted 11 months ago
    Fri Jul 14 2017 17:06:40

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    A little over a year ago, I had bed bug problems at another unit. Despite being bad, and it otherwise being a kinda crappy place, it did get handled in my unit pretty well. Fast forward to a month ago, I'm living in a much nicer apartment, 3000 miles away, in a town that doesn't really have a bed bug problem. And yet, I start getting bit.

    I call my property manager and ask her to send over someone for an inspection, because although I can't find them, I recognize the bites pretty well (I'm pretty sensitive to all bugs, but these bites are different from others on me). Just before the PCO gets there, I find *something* crawling around, but it's too small to see. I catch it and put it in a ziploc and give it to him, he can't see what it is either, but takes it home. He returns and says the magnifying glass wasn't much help, but he's pretty sure that's what it is, and so he's going to do a treatment. I have some misgivings about what he's going to do, but chill out because I'm not a professional.

    I have a very long list of complaints and concerns, but I want to skip to the points that concern me. He said he would bring along someone to do the treatment, but when he got here, he didn't have anyone and had me help him as he sprayed my unit (with my cat in it as well). I sequestered the cat to the bathroom, and then once everything else had been done, brought her to the bedroom which had been sprayed ~30 minutes before. Not everything was dry. He insisted that it was safe.

    2 weeks later, he returns. I tell him I'm still having issues being bitten and I think its' the bed. He sprays in there, and then I leave with the cat locked in the bathroom because by this point he's pissed me off so much about other things that I can't be there without losing my temper. I return after he's left to find EVERYTHING covered with a Cimexa/Borax blend. Supposedly the unit is safe. He told me to clean it up in a week.

    Here's the thing. I trusted his expertise, but I'm now worried about the airborne Cimexa. I'm especially worried about the cat who was simply covered in it for days, especially after she hid during a false fire alarm that scared her (it took the building 2 hours to turn it off). I'm trying to clean everything up now, but I'm concerned. How much harm have I done to my cat and myself being misinformed?

  2. Nobugsonme

    your host
    Joined: Mar '07
    Posts: 22,105


    Posted 11 months ago
    Sat Jul 15 2017 0:09:49

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    I am not an expert and can't advise on the safety of Cimexa and borax in large quantities. However, it's my understanding that borax isn't a recommended treatment for bed bugs.

    I would advise calling the state dept that licenses pesticide applicators. Check first that the company/guy is licensed. It doesn't sound like something a skilled licensed applicator would do.

    You may be able to get the company to come out and clean up their mess-- assuming there are higher ups who know what they're doing.

    FWIW not only is the overapplication and addition of borax to Cimexa suspect, but as I understand it, Cimexa is meant to be left down, not removed after a week. You can read the label instructions for treatment and refer to them in your discussions with the company:

    You may also want to reference the Material Safety Data Sheet:

    You can probably find a label and MSDS for borax online also.

    This references safety precautions for humans and pets. Knowing you had a cat, a licensed PCO should be applying pesticides safely.

    Please note that Cimexa is not the same as DE.

    I added something the title which may attract experts to the thread.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."

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