One possible BB, are there more? could someone ID with pic(6 posts)
I live in an apartment with 4 other rooms. My roommate (we share a wall) thought she had bed bugs and began treatment in her room. She did not completely wash all of her clothes, left them wet in the bathroom, and used the washing machine which we all used after her. Today, I found a single bug on my bed. I don't feel or see any bites and checked my mattress and encasement and did not see any infestations. I'm too nervous to lift the mattress and see whats going on under. Is it likely that there is an infestation if I saw one on the bed?
When i squished the bug i found, a ton of blood came out. The picture isn't that good, could someone ID it?
I'm not an expert, but it looks like one to me. Yes, if there's one, there are likely more. Have you or your roommate contacted your landlord? If not, I suggest you do so. They should arrange to have all units inspected and treated if an infestation is confirmed. Good Luck
Sorry but that likely is one.
Good thing you haven't tossed the place. Save that sample for a PCO so they ID and plan their attack. Lets the bugs lie unaware they have been discovered.
Thank you. My roommate informed our landlord who sent over the PCO, he said he was qualified to spray the place, but not identify the bugs, should we ask to use another PCO? Our landlord has not taken any measure to inspect other units or other rooms in the same apt. If my roommate (who is currently getting her room treated) did not bag her clothes, or wash/dry them properly, I'm assuming there is no chance they were eliminated?
It's important to understand why bagging, washing, and drying are sometimes part of the prep that PCOs ask for.
Bed bugs only have to feed every few days. When they aren't feeding, they're hiding. But they also don't want to have to work extra hard to get to their food.
As a result, they'll harbor in any safe-seeming place that's close to a food source.
Our clothes can be that safe-seeming place--esp. if they're in a dresser or an undisturbed pile.
PCOs ask people to wash and dry their clothes not because washing magically kills the bugs.
It's actually the heat that kills the bugs.
Now, if you value your clothes, this presents a problem. A lot of our modern clothes don't do well with high temps.
I have a ton of clothing that cannot be washed in anything other than cold water, and none of those items are supposed to be dried. Likely, your roommate was in the same situation.
(That's not to say it's a good idea to ignore a PCO's prep requirements, but I did want to explain what you and/or your roommate can do and why it's important to be done. A lot of people look at those prep instructions and think "I'm not going to ruin my $100 jeans or my $80 bras! Washing in cold and air drying will be good enough.)
To kill bed bugs and eggs, the clothes need to have their temperatures raised to about 120 to 140 degrees for a certain length of time.
A lot of delicate fabrics that cannot handle being washed in hot or being dried in the dryer, can handle having their temperature raised *if they go into the dryer dry*.
If you think about it, the back seat of a car on a hot, sunny day gets to be 135 to 140 degrees (but, no, putting your belongings in your car is not a reliable way to treat bedbug infested items, sadly), and that doesn't shrink clothes. Putting delicate items that are wet into a dryer does. It's going from cold and wet to a dryer that does the damage to most items. Many delicate or dry clean only items can tolerate being run through a dryer on low for 20 minutes, which if you don't overload the dryer, should be hot enough to kill bugs and eggs. You may want to get an instant read infrared thermometer to check the temp inside the dryer. They're cheap compared to a lot of other bed bugs stuff.
(Obviously, basic laundry practices suggest that you should only dry items that are already clean. Drying dirty items will set in stains and odors.)
Once those items have been baked--in a dryer or in a Packtite--they're bug free, so you don't want the bugs in the apartment to get back in.
For that reason, items that you're sure have been debugged are generally stored in tightly sealed plastic bags to keep the bugs from moving back in and laying more eggs.
If your roommate air dried delicates that were washed in cold, none of that laundering would necessarily kill the bugs or eggs.
Those items need to be heated up--either by putting them already dry into the dryer or by baking them in a Packtite.
Some PCOs ask clients to bag everything, but unless the PCO asks you to bag everything, I wouldn't bag items that could still have bugs or eggs in them. Bed bugs can live for a very long time without food, and they're small enough that they require very little air. For that reason, sealing up items that may have bugs in them is not a time efficient way to eliminate bed bugs. (The rule of thumb before we had access to more treatments than we have now was that such items needed to stay sealed for at least 18 months.) So unless you're told to, don't bag things other than fabric items that you're sure are bug free.
However, it's also important to understand that the reason for having clients treat their own fabrics (I think--I'm not a professional) is to knock down the total numbers of bed bugs and eggs being dealt with in a particular infestation. The PCO will be spraying residual pesticides that any stragglers will have to cross, and as a result of exposure to those, the bugs will die off.
(Personally, I found it helpful to have a stash of "infested" clothes--stuff that could tolerate multiple hot washings and dryings that I wore in the house while I was infested. I put aside most of the delicate and dry clean only items until I knew I was clear.)
Killing off bed bugs takes time. I'd be sure to ask your roommate whether she had planned to heat those items up later.
I know you know this, but your landlord really should have all the rooms in the unit inspected and all adjacent units to your unit inspected. Many people don't react to bed bug bites, so it's possible to have an infestation and not know it.
Spideyjg is one of the best IDers on the site.
Listen to him also when he says not to toss the place. Tossing the place *before* you get a professional inspection can make it harder to get confirmation of the bugs being there. (Also hang onto the sample you photographed.) It can also spread infestations.
I'd be more concerned about the landlord/PCO not inspecting all adjacent units than anything else you've mentioned here. Not panic level concerned, but concerned enough to ask whether adjacent apartments have been inspected.
Your roommate may need a little education about the prep, but it's also possible the prep sheet wasn't detailed enough. We haven't talked to her or seen the prep sheet. It's entirely possible it's a little from column A and a little from column B.
If you haven't already, be sure to read the FAQs on the main site. There are a lot of them, but there's also a ton of really helpful information buried in them.
Hope some of that helps!
Yes, the bug looks like a young bed bug nymph, too bad it isn't in better focus. If the PCO treats for bed bugs but can't identify every life stage of a bed bug when provided with a sample, then s/he shouldn't be in that line of work. Same goes for bed bug canine handlers (and trainers).
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