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if still getting bitten after second treatment, does that mean it isn't working?

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  1. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sun May 16 2010 20:36:57
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    Hi everyone, my apartment has bed bugs, and they have a PCO spraying for it (truthfully I don't know the quality of the PCO.) My bedbug problem was never severe before this, but after the second treatment, that evening i got the motherlode of bites and am concerned! Not sure if i'm doing everything wrong or what (the encasement on my boxspring has sprung a hole, the bags with my books in them have sprung holes). but I'm getting really tired of living out of ziploc bags and only having pathway space in my apartment!! (all of my belongings are in garbage bags along the floor) How do i make this genuinely stop?!
    I am just a medical student, I cannot afford anymore dry cleaning. I have already sunken more than 400 dollars into dry cleaning as it is. I actually went and purchased a vacuum thanks to these stupid monsters (wooden floors meant i thought i would never need one), and would like to get back to studying rather than needing to clean everything I own each and every night!!!

    Help!!

  2. bed buggy hell

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon May 17 2010 0:44:34
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    you need to find out what they are using...like they used phantom on my house and it takes a while for it to kill them...
    next...is your bed an island? do you have intercepters on your bed, encasements on all, frame has been checked???
    have you read the facts on what to do on this web site?

  3. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon May 17 2010 15:39:43
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    1. waiting on the pest control company to get back to me, they sent me a list of products, one is some natural product with clove in it (a dust insecticide- not DE). the other two seem to both have pyrethrin in it.
    2. my mattress and box spring both have encasements, albeit the box spring encasement got ripped but nothing happened between the rip and the spraying so i figured it didn't make too big a difference. should have started biting me right after the rip if that was the cause right? (am going to duct tape it shut today
    3. my bed is a brass bed, which i'm told yes they can crawl up metal, but they can't really reside in it. no wood products in my bed for them to nest in.
    4. i've been laundering everything in hot water/dryer as the sites recommend, vacuuming as the PCO wants me to do, i've been trying to follow PCO's instructions, although i don't have much faith in them as one of their "professionals" told me i had a spider mite infestation and that they were biting me (with some of my own research, i discovered that spider mites infest plants and do not bite humans)

    is that the right product for them to be using? i called the PCO and the receptionist was like, well, it doesn't usually happen that way (bitten after spraying) but maybe the bugs are all coming out. wtf?! left a message for someone else who hopefully is an actual PCO.

    really itchy!! hydrocortisone cream not working!!

  4. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon May 17 2010 15:48:52
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    Update: i'm learning things i didn't think to learn off of this site thanks to random surfing:

    my pco is taking perhaps 15 minutes to half an hour to spray my 1 br apartment.
    when they did the initial lookover, he took 10 minutes to check my apartment
    the second pco came to do the second spraying, when i asked about bookshelves and desk and such he kept saying " that's not your problem" when i thought, well, erm, wood is a place for them to live, he said only unfinished wood.

    so i take it this means exactly as i figured, my PCO is an idiot (hired by the cheapest landlady ever no less)...now what?! move?

  5. BugsInTO

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon May 17 2010 19:15:09
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    Hi Scratchy99 - Benadryl before bed will make you drowsy and help with the itching. Don't mix it with anything else.

    Keep reading the FAQs to help you with learning about bedbugs. Yes, they like wood but they can nest anywhere in a crevice or fold that meets they needs. There are photos of bedbug harborages in screwheads and the hems of drapes etc. They will infest books because they are stationary (i.e. not moving around.)

    Your PCO's plan may be to put down pesticide around the sleeping areas and then have the bedbugs come and cross the poison to get to you etc. But, I think it would help if the PCO explained their strategy to you, not just the products they use.

    Good luck with this.

  6. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon May 17 2010 21:51:15
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    spoke to someone at the company that claims to be a supervisor, and he was answering questions correctly and saying things that corroborate with this site, asked me questions like, haven't they been drilling holes in your walls to pump (i don't know what) into them? (they did not) he says he will be speaking to his employees now. assuming this guy is who he says he is, a new chapter to my plan has been enacted: pester supervisor guy until I see results!

    thanks on the benadryl thing, can't take it for medical reasons so looks like i'm going to have to go with being itchy or find another alternative. calamine perhaps?

    says if i get something called sterifab which is some blend with a lot of alcohol in it (used by hospitals to disinfect beds he says) it kills the live bugs, but not the eggs. anyone know anything about this stuff?

  7. flabergasted

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon May 17 2010 23:16:37
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    You need a direct hit to kill with Steri-Fab. Being a med student you probably have access to 91% alcohol same thing except a lot cheaper. But again it doesn't kill eggs what you are describing is a reinfestation or new hatch or you PCO didn't do the job right, which from your post sounds like a lot of the problem. Just becasue he coloborates things from this site doesn't mean he is praticing what he is preaching.

    I react really bad to the bites and can take Benadryl - I found Reactin worked better and I wasn't groggy. The hydrocortisone cream didn't work for me either, best lotion we have found is Aveeno Anti-Itch lotion, I have a friend who has an outbreak of shingles right now and she says it better than calamine. It almost stops the itch instantly and takes the swelling down within the hour, you also don't glow pink. If you have scratched any open just dab some Polysporin on the bite so you don't get infection. Unfortunatelty these things are red all the time so you really can't tell if you have infection or not.

    My dermatologist said that the anticoagulant that these things inject his exact words were think of heprin that the histamine reaction in the skin can cause localized damage to bite areas blood vessels when you have cluster bites and can take several weeks to months to return to normal I have some 4 months old that flareup. Don't shower or wash in hot water that irrates them so just use warm water, sun will cause the bites to flare up and itch really bad to.

    Hope this helps.

  8. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 18 2010 0:40:51
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    scratchy,

    Talking to the supervisor was a good idea. Hopefully he will make sure you get more thorough and careful treatment.

    OTOH, while Steri-fab has a slight residual, it is not much of a solution. Killing bed bugs you see is not such a big deal.

    Bed bugs can take 3 or more treatments to get rid of in some cases, but they should be decreasing in number each time (as should incidents of bites). Sometimes particular methods may cause you to see more. Sometimes, too, treatments of adjoining neighbors (either professional or DIY) can cause them to "come over" en masse. It doesn't sound like that is happening.

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

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 18 2010 5:17:28
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    I used calamine to try and stop itching without much success. We also tried mild steroid creams and anti histamines. None were very helpful. The best thing we have found is Tiger Balm ointment. Initially it stings slightly but then cancels out the itching. Worth a try - our bedroom reeks of the stuff.
    Jacks

  10. bed buggy hell

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 18 2010 15:46:35
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    hey scratchy99,

    well it looks like you are really taking controle of the situation...you go! so fix ithe rip asap.. and watch the duck tape it didnt stick to mine and just fell on the ont he floor...hence more can get onto my bed..i had a whole in my first mattress cover and i was still getting bit...covered it and inspected it a couple of days dayer and all was well.
    do you have a packtite? if you do i would treat all of your books and store them in some kind of air tight container.(if u can) then have your pco throughly inspect every inch of all furniture...if your bookcase is clean(he could treat bookcase to if they will) you can wait until you are clean and put them back..its alot of work, but if you want to be sure...
    also what are they doing about your neighbors...what if they have them?? and are they treating them?

  11. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 18 2010 18:20:04
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    90% of my neighbors in this building do not speak english, and are unfriendly. i have tried to inform anyone i can in this building that i have an infestation, but no one has yet admitted to currently having them. the neighbor directly next door is a little old lady whose daughter visits occasionally (And speaks English). the daughter said her mother had them in this building two years ago and it was a really really bad infestation and they lost a lot of furniture to it. the super's wife has been contradicting the super and saying that I didn't bring these bugs back from the hospital, they've been here before. the super of course, states the building was entirely clean before me, and one guy in the building thought he had them but he didn't. i am now sadly learning that the super I thought was a generally nice, honest guy is a flaming liar who doesn't keep his word on anything. And most likely his wife isn't terribly different.

    oh and on the supervisor side of things? yeah now he's calling and saying 1. which apartment were you in again? and 2. my apartment, the one they can't remember, wasn't prepared for them well enough so you can't blame his employees for doing a s@#t job on it.

    my defense (this makes me really really mad too, because it's just a stupid excuse theyre using)
    1. they never TOLD me the apartment wasn't prepared enough, that they can't do a complete job until i do prepare. one of them in fact told me, oh, finished wood, that isn't your problem and said he'd do my dresser to be nice but that it doesn't need it (as many on this site can verify, doesn't need it my ass!!) In fact now that i recall, i think i asked them if this was good enough and they said it was "fine"!!!!

    2. i am a lone female in this apartment, and i am not a body building female. i cannot physically lift all of my furniture, and cannot sleep on a bed that was dismantled the night before. i dread the thought of asking my do nothing super to help me lift furniture the morning of (he's been letting exterminator in as well for me), because a) he doesn't speak english well enough to get my request correctly and b) seriously? he's going to "forget."

    3. even if i could lift every item of furniture in my possession, they want my furniture 16 inches away from the walls in advance, ready for them before they come. I live in an apartment in queens. if all of my furniture moved 16 inches away from the walls, I wouldn't have any floorspace to walk on left!! not to mention the fact that my floor is busy, it's got my entire life in plastic garbage bags living on it....

    really frustrated right now. haven't gotten the chance to pick up the aveeno/benadryl/tiger balm but am planning on purchasing a combo of the three and seeing where I get with this...

    oh and in other stories: I have a date saturday (yay?)...anyone have any stories of how to date with an infestation like this without 1. wearing a burqa so as to hide the splotches on one's neck and elsewhere, while in late spring no less and 2. having these stupid monsters living in my apartment kind of makes me feel like i'm concealing an STD or something! because yeah, girl with bed bug infestation, that's really freaking attractive!!

    I do overnight call at the hospital (which btw, keeps all of their supplies under lock and key. can't get a bandaid without a passcode in this place, though i was hoping for the free alcohol solution too), this means sleeping in their beds. I've tried to wear clothing that's been put in the dryer and is clean, so theoretically i haven't infected them but dear god if they find out i slept in their beds, they're going to freaking kill me!! Don't want my education hacked to bits!!

    last night sprayed "native organics" naturally clean bed bug killer on my bed frame last night, and i "think" , i have no new bites today! (knock wood)

  12. bed buggy hell

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu May 20 2010 1:02:17
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    wow girl...you have got your hands full...do you have anyone who can come help do any furniture stuff??? but i gues the dilema with space...wow again...i am at a loss...i think your sup. is an obvious ass...can you move??? live at the hospital jk...can you see if an independent pco can come out and give you a free estimate??? no but really is moving an option?? how far are you in school? r u almost done, go to new hospital different area?

  13. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu May 20 2010 20:35:10
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    well, my lease is up at the end of august/sept, so i'm thinking moving could definitely be in the cards, only problem is moving my bedbugs from one apartment to another solves nothing, it just makes everything worse.

    and yeah i've got my hands full right now, and my schooling is definitely suffering for it...

    been thinking, one of my uncles told me that my sister's bedbugs went through an exterminator which didn't prove effective, and then she eradicated them herself with a combo of murphy's oil soap, chemical sprays (which she doesn't remember what they were), and DE...

    so i'm thinking, i've got the murphy's, i've got some "natural" spray that actually isn't half bad judging from my experience spraying my bed frame with it, and i'm going to try finding DE...

    apparently in the long run, buggy chemotherapy doesn't work unless one sets off the equivalent of a nuclear explosion in one's apartment, and even then...roaches were "eradicated" with some gel product a few weeks ago. they're back. and you know, there are advantages to living in an apartment complex. but the buggy part makes it seem like perhaps it's worth moving to a dark, desolate basement apartment.

  14. janebug

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Fri May 21 2010 7:52:16
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    I am with you Scratchy, I am a student as well. Have not been to class in a week trying to prepare for the bug guys. All I can offer you is encouragement. Treat this experience like cramming, research, prepare get some rest and do your best. There is life after this, somewhere.
    All the best,
    janebug

  15. bed buggy hell

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Fri May 21 2010 23:50:15
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    try not to let your schooling suffer..i know that is easy to say but you will have a hard time if you miss a bunch of stuff,,,you know...do what you can do....i have tried freezing and lots of chemicals..i hope it works..i am thankful i am in a house, and not in an apt. anymore...
    good luck girl, and we are here if you need more help and or venting...

  16. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 25 2010 19:56:01
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    ok, update: PCO came friday, treated my bedframe for the first time, "drilled and pumped" my walls for the first time...and this was my "third and final spraying" got one bite in the intervening time (i think?) anyways, called the PCO office back and with the people on the phone, got two different answers. First response, "oh well, spraying makes the bugs a little crazy so they might actually come out more after doing that" and "just because you were bitten doesn't mean you need another treatment" and "it is very important that you vacuum every day after a treatment"

    this is wrong for a few reasons:
    1. supervisor at this company told me that no, you are not supposed to be bitten more after a treatment, you are supposed to be bitten less. To me, this stands to reason that i'll know they're gone once the bites are gone.
    2. there was an EPA article link posted on this site somewhere (i figure the govt is prolly reliable seeing as they theoretically represent a neutral source.): On vacuums it says:

    "Pros
    When trying to minimize pesticide exposure, vacuuming
    is preferable to contact pesticides as a way of eliminating
    bed bugs that the inspector spots. When the PMP removes
    bed bugs, the findings of his follow-up inspections are
    more relevant because the evidence is new.
    Cons
    “Normal vacuuming by clients is generally of little
    benefit in bed bug management because the bugs
    reside in places where housecleaning efforts normally
    do not reach” (Potter, 2006‡). Experts’ main concern
    with vacuuming is that it does not reliably get the eggs.
    Whoever is vacuuming must take precautions to avoid
    re-infestation from live bed bugs in the vacuum. There
    is also the possibility of re-infestation (or spreading an
    infestation) from the vacuum.
    Recommendations
    Where vacuums may realistically play a role in bed bug
    control is during a PMP’s inspection. As with cockroach
    control, use of a HEPA vacuum to suck up any insects
    found upon inspection is recommended from the
    perspective of pesticide use reduction. Steam will have
    a greater impact on eggs (than vacuuming or most
    pesticides), but steam doesn’t remove the evidence.

    now, if you've made it that far, to me this says: For the average person, daily vacuuming is not necessarily beneficial unless one can actually see them crawling around on a daily basis. Or at the least, to me this says there's some debate as to whether or not daily vacuuming is going to help somebody like me, who has only seen a bedbug three times in two months. I am nervous about saying that, that it won't help. But surely 3x a week will do the job without impinging on the rest of my life? Opinions? experts who know better than me?

    oh and the link:

    http://www.nchh.org/Portals/0/Contents/bedbug_report.pdf

    opinions on the vacuuming debate? anyone wanna interpret that?

  17. scratchy99

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 25 2010 20:00:44
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    oh the other lesson in that phone call: some of these companies have their receptionists doling out advice which is totally unmonitored and flat wrong. I asked her if she was an exterminator, she said "no" and i said uh ok, and hung on silent, she got nervous and transferred me to the office manager who told me an entirely different story and booked me for two more sprayings without my even asking for them.

    just because they volunteer to answer your question doesn't mean they know what they're talking about!!!

  18. DeedleBeetle

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Tue May 25 2010 20:26:31
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    Oy....

    my heart goes out to you. I can't imagine going through law school while dealing with an infestation. Horrible.

    Makes me think though...perhaps i should start studying the cases and see the state of law concerning bed bugs. I read somethings but it seemed like there wasn't too much. And i know there's some new board set up to deal with the problem...perhaps i should try to get named to that board....Anyway, I'll being making some time to see what's up, legally speaking, on the bed bug front in New York City.

    i also live in Queens and have my office here as well. And even with a decent size apartment in a lovely neighborhood -- Flushing -- living out of clear plastic bags is going to get old really quick. It's been less than a week and since i work from home and don't have court or office hours until the weekend this week...i'm just living in a pair of soft pj pants and a long sleeved cotton pull over for home and one pair of jeans, undies and bra that i boil in an old pot (i'm now glad i didn't throw away in my last purge) and a light blouse that is easily laundered in the same way. I want to open those plastic bags full of clothes, towels, sheets, etc. as little as possible until a few weeks, at least, have passed.

    Take heart my dear Queens sister...This too shall pass!

    deedle

  19. x-fit.j.lo

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    Posted 1 year ago
    Sun Sep 9 2012 6:52:59
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    BugsInTO - 2 years ago  » 
    Hi Scratchy99 - Benadryl before bed will make you drowsy and help with the itching. Don't mix it with anything else.
    Keep reading the FAQs to help you with learning about bedbugs. Yes, they like wood but they can nest anywhere in a crevice or fold that meets they needs. There are photos of bedbug harborages in screwheads and the hems of drapes etc. They will infest books because they are stationary (i.e. not moving around.)
    Your PCO's plan may be to put down pesticide around the sleeping areas and then have the bedbugs come and cross the poison to get to you etc. But, I think it would help if the PCO explained their strategy to you, not just the products they use.
    Good luck with this.

    They also like metal, they are inside the metal railing of my bed frame where the bed slats attach to, also along the gap in top of the metal curtain railing. The reason they got up there was as the curtains are touching the floor and they travel up and down on them at night to get to my bed near the window. They could be anywhere really around the bed as long as they can hide well and they can travel easily to your bed at night. I reckon they wouldn't like to travel down and get back into hiding space from top of the lacquered wardrobe for exp....they possibly would do that if the wardrobe was a raw wood and easy to climb up...so I think the surface matters to them, that's how is in my bedroom, I have a huge gloss sliding wardrobe next to my bed and there is not a single sign of them, I kee checking every day there, but there is a sign in my chest of drawer which is further away from the bed than the wardrobe, when I took out all the drawers from the chest I could see few of they droppings on the raw piece of wood on which the drawers hold...

  20. Koebner

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    Posted 1 year ago
    Sun Sep 9 2012 7:08:37
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    x-fit.j.lo - This thread is 2 years old & very few of the people posting are still active in the forums.

    Have you read this site's FAQs yet? You seem to be inventing your own theories about BBs - that's only going to make you miserable.

    Better to read the FAQs & get good, solid, accurate infomration that will help you to stay calm & to take only the correct, effective steps towards getting rid of your BB problem.


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