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Does anyone have experience with a low level infestation, and the outcome of it?

(3 posts)
  1. bedbuggywoe1

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Jul 30 2012 16:14:06
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    Hi,

    So my old apartment building was positively infested with bed bugs. After dealing with them for the third time in a year and a half, I decided to get out of there. I abandoned all my furniture, books, decor etc. I had the majority of my clothing and accessories sent to a "professional bed bug cleaning service" and i took a few things to my dad's apartment to hold me over until i found a new place and got the rest of it back. The few things I took myself were 100% sterilized. I had a dog come to my dad's house a few days after this point, and the dog gave the apartment and my things the all clear.

    A week later, the rest of my items were returned. I was still anxious about the bugs, so I only unpacked a few items, and the rest were kept in sealed bags. Two weeks later, I started getting bites.

    I called in another dog, who identified bed bugs in my sealed, bagged, "clean" clothes. He also identified bed bugs in my dad's bed, but not mine. In both the sealed bags and in my dad's bed, the infestation was found to be at a very low level. The dog handler said that based on the dog's reaction, he would estimate that there were between 2-5 bugs in my dad's bed, and 2-5 bugs in the sealed clothing. The dog did not react anywhere else in the house.

    The same day, I had a PCO come and fumigate the apartment using poison spray and also steam treatments. I re washed EVERYTHING in the bags, as well as all of the linens/towels in the house.

    The only things that were not washed were the dry cleaned clothing, much of which is hanging in the closet in plastic bags. The dog did not identify bugs in those areas, but we are still going to sort through and choose what to be dry cleaned and what to keep. I bought mattress protectors for my dad's bed, but not mine because it is an air mattress and a temporary situation.

    The PCO said he is confident that the one treatment will eradicate them, but that he will come back to fumigate in 2 weeks just in case any eggs hatched.

    Right now, everything is in sealed plastic bags.

    Any advice/suggestions/ideas about whether or not these efforts will eradicate them would be much appreciated. I have been dealing with this issue for so long, and I am having trouble seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

    I am also moving to a new place with all new furniture in a few weeks, and if I bring them there I will honestly die. Any suggestions to prevent that?

  2. bedbugartist

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Jul 31 2012 0:33:01
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    Wow, this scares me because this is essentially what I did....heavily infested apartment that was infested when I moved in and I didn't know it...throwing out anything that couldn't be 'cleaned'. I personally heated all my stuff, but I'm wondering what is up with the items in sealed bags that were treated by a professional company being still infested. Something went wrong there, horribly. You said that you brought to your place were 100% sterilized...I'm wondering if this was true. I had bed bugs in shoes that I threw in the dryer...didn't kill them. I wasn't able to get rid of those bed bugs until I put them in the packtite for about two hours. And even now, I'm still scared that they might be in the shoes. Are you sure you put your items through enough heat to ensure both bugs and eggs died?

    I don't have any advice or suggestions, but I will be watching this just in case. And I'll probably be re-packtiting all my stuff before I even consider opening the bags in my new apartment. ugh. I hope you find more success in your next move! I understand the pain and fear you're going through right now!

  3. Koebner

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Jul 31 2012 6:57:35
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    The treated clothes may have dead bugs in there to which a dog may alert. Hopefully, Doug Summers, a K9 expert will be able to give you a fuller answer.

    Dry cleaning is not the best approach - simply running your garments through a hot drier is a much better method. See this FAQ; http://bedbugger.com/faqs/stuff/

    If you haven't already read the other FAQs on this site, please do so, especially the first four. Chances are you'll know some of it already but unfortunately, one of the biggest impediments to eradicating BBs is misinformation & there's an awful lot of it about. Our host, Nobugsonme really has set the gold standard here for accurate & up-to-date info, so please, sit down with a cup of coffee & carefully read the FAQs.

    Re footwear, 2 hrs in the packtite should kill BBs. If you're still concerned or if you can't get the temperature probe right inside the footwear, then the new Thermaspot stickers may help - see the Bedbugger blog for full details; http://bedbugger.com

    Finally - the place has not been fumigated. Please, please, don't use that word. Fumigation applies to gas treatments only. One of the reasons why people still, even after all these years, throw bug bombs at bed bugs is because of this confusion between spraying & fumigation. Poeple imagine that fumigation means somehow more serious treatment, which leads them to the notion that a bug bomb is better than spraying appropriate, targetted pesticide. It's not. I know it sounds like mere semantic nitpicking but getting the word "fumigation" understood properly will genuinely help people to make better decisions about BB treatment.


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