The PCO Treated - Now What?(4 posts)
The PCO came today and I asked him a ton of questions. He was really helpful in clearing up a lot of issues that I had.
However, I kind of have the "now what?" feeling. I understand that I will need to keep all my clothes bagged and sealed, and keep bagging and sealing and washing any clothes that I wear. No problem. All my fuzzy toys and other linens etc will stay bagged unless I need them. But I have a question about thnigs like blankets: we need to sleep on our bed. Do I wash a blanket, use for a few days and then bag and wash again? The same with towels, bedsheets, pillowcases (we got some pillow covers to go over the actual pillows)?
I am just having a hard time establishing a "system" for all of this.
Any advice is appreciated!
Post treatment you should ask your PCO what you can and can't do. Vacuum, yes or no or wait, that kind of thing. What kind of cleaning, can you mop (probably not), etc.
You should keep a written record of bites if you can and any evidence of bedbugs that you may find or see. (Also keep a written record of treatment dates and the materials your PCO uses.)
Keep your dirty clothes sealed in a designated plastic bag (or bags) until you are ready to do laundry. Keep clean clothes and linens similarly sealed in clean bags until use.
The laundering and changing of linens is a comfort-level and time-availability thing. People have reported doing it daily or every other day or every three days... there is no rule. But I would aim for changing the bed linens (everything blanket, mattress pad, whatever and everything that goes on the bed) every 3 to 5 days. And really no longer than that. And throw in the towels as well, why not.
It helps to designate a subset of your clothes and bed linens for the duration of the infestation. These items will get repeatedly washed in hot water and dried in hot and will start to show it after a while.
Try to organize your clothes by bagging either complete outfits together or all pants in one bag, all shirts in another, etc. Labelling the bags can also help if you opt to use ziploc bags. All of this can help in the mornings when it can be a bit chaotic.
Think about how you will handle things, your coat and personal items, when you come in the door in the evenings. Designate an area and bags or containers for the purpose. Think of how to make things easier for yourself and don't beat yourself up if things are not running smoothly (they can't possibly). Just do your best.
Hopefully it will only be a matter of weeks before you are done with this mess.
Thanks for the advice. I hope this will all be over soon.
When you say everything on the bed, you don't mean the sealed mattress protector, right? That should stay on?
The sealed mattress protector should stay on probably forever--or at least until 18 months after you no longer have bedbugs. There could be eggs or live bedbugs in there and they can live in there for a long time.
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