New to this - freaking out!(4 posts)
Found one alive adult bedbug in the bed (couldn't smash it in time) and a dead one. Saw those tell-tale red/brown smears on the sheets. 3 bites on my arm. OK, so the invasion has started. No evidence of the critters anywhere else.
What I've done: Washed __everything_ made of fabric (HOT water, HOT dry), vaccumed twice, thrown out all junk/garbage/stuff I don't need. Wiped down metal bedframe with oxyclean wipes (Not sure why, just feels sanitary!), dusted. Everything is up on shelves or hanging, nothing on the floor other than a rug (also washed), a trash can and some cleaning products. No headboard or anything made of wood in the room.
Pillows and mattress have had anti-bedbug covers for years and I just put new ones on just in case. I steam-ironed them anyway. Moved dresser, desk, bed away from the wall so nothing touches it. Will tape up the wall outlets soon. Should I put double sided sticky tape around the feet of the bed -- if so which brand is best? Anything I can spray on the walls/baseboards/carpet/underside of bedframe that would be disagreeable to the bugs and not stink up the place?
What now? Do I sleep at my desk instead of in the bed to prevent feeding those suckers? Should I wear clothes with long sleeves to bed? I can't move out for several months so I've got to endure them for a while. What more can I do until I get out of here?
I'm in a dorm so they'll charge me all extermination costs which I cannot afford. It's been 2 years of zero insect bites until the new set of unsanitary roommates moved in, I suspect they brought some hitchhiking bugs from home.
I will admit I am absolutely miserable over this. It is scary and nasty and just terrible. Hate feeling itchy too.
12: Welcome. You're working hard and this may help you somewhat. BB are attracted to humans, not dirt. That said, if BB are in your dorm, it will probably take a mire comprehensive approach to beat them back. This must involve the university (are you on campus?) which must have a professional facilities department and is responsible for thousands of students' well-being. I'm dubious about their charging you, I'd fight that through student advocacy channels, but in any case, this is bigger than you and the school must be involved. There's no specific tape for BB and there's also been advice against the practice (stuck BB may issue an "alarm" to their friends to go deeper into hiding). No, you should not go sleep at your desk, that just risks spreading the bugs. You could cover up parts of you that you don't want bit and leave open parts you can "sacrifice" (it's unlikely that you can prevent them from feeding in you altogether.) If this is BB, you need to take precautions not to spread them to visitors or the places you visit (like your family on break). But, are you sure it's BB? People develop "bites" due to other causes. Other insects have been mistakenly identified as BB. Keep watching, but try to go easy on yourself. Read some if the material on the Resouces page to educate and arm yourself. Hit us with your questions. One thing I need to emphasize again. In most situations, it's the landlord's responsibility to treat. In a university dorm, it's their property. Do not fight this yourself. You would not call a PCO to treat a hotel room you tent for the night. You do not call an independent PCO to treat your college dorm room. Best of luck.
That said, if BB are in your dorm, it will probably take a mire comprehensive approach to beat them back.
The problem is that in the license agreement they state (and clearly this is a falsehood) that they've never had BB in the dorm before since it was built, so any instance of them popping up is the fault of the resident who must cover _all_ costs until the infestation is complete. They clarify that this means other rooms/floors/etc at the student's expense. Of course other students have had bedbug stories before, but the harsh language of the license ensures that nobody would ever report it. It's ridiculous, but that's what you agree to when you sign up.
You could cover up parts of you that you don't want bit and leave open parts you can "sacrifice" (it's unlikely that you can prevent them from feeding in you altogether.)
Guess I'll have to live with the bites. Ick.
So tape around the bed legs is a bad idea. Since I can't caulk, what about masking tape along the 'gaps' in the metal bedframe to seal off that hiding area? There also seems to be significant room under the baseboard along the walls, but I doubt there is an easy (removable) way to seal the gap there.
If this is BB, you need to take precautions not to spread them to visitors or the places you visit (like your family on break).
Excellent point. What can I do beyond hot wash/drying my clothes, backpack, and not bringing any personal articles home? The only thing I can't throw in the washer are my leather shoes, unless there is a remedy.
But, are you sure it's BB? People develop "bites" due to other causes. Other insects have been mistakenly identified as BB.
The pictures definitely matched up, as do the blood/poo smears. Maybe these look darker brown. I'd be fine with anything else, even spiders, but it really does look like BB to me. But I'll keep an open mind that it could be something else.
Thank you so much for your advice. It really helps to know others have been through this.
12. The resources area has tips on inspection, treatment, travel, etc. There's also a lot of good info in FAQ and if you search on keywords, like travel, shoes, beacon or packtite or "safe passage". I'm puzzled by the license policy. Is this university-run or a private off-campus? What country/state? I'd be curious ad to it's legality and enforceability (but I'm not a legal expert). If it's university property, again, you have recourse via student activism. Remember, 10 years ago NO building had BB, now more and more have them. They could come in on your gear, a visitor, on the drop cloth of a contractor in the packaging of new equipment. Or from elsewhere in the building. To pin this on the victim sounds outrageous, something a slumlord might do, but not what I'd expect from a forward-thinking school administration. Do you have an entomology department that can help you with ID as well as knowhow? Check out the card Cornell produced for its community (Resources page). Please tell us more. Perhaps we can help you make a stink.
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