Tales of bed bug woe: Allergicgirl’s questions

by nobugsonme on January 18, 2007 · 47 comments

in bed bugs, reader questions

Editor’s note: I am still trying to find the best way of using the architecture of this blog to organize our information. The “Share your tales” and “Success Stories” pages are not getting much attention, so I am going to try another tactic. Each week, at least, I’ll start a new thread “Tales of bed bug woe” and then link them all together so we will have them in a format newcomers can use.

This week, I am kicking things off with a comment “Allergygirl” left on another thread. I know she’ll get more readers and more response if the comment is bumped up here. Allergygirl writes:

I got on this blog to read about bites. S, I’m having a similar problem to yours. I started getting bites about 3 weeks ago. It took me a while to figure out they were bed bugs. I bagged everything. Washed and dryed it all in high heat. (Will 40 minutes in the hot dryer be long enough to kill them?)

I think the infestation is small, and it seems to be localized in my room toward the back wall. We had a PCO come and spray the whole apt. He comes back in two weeks.I have two roommates who still have not had any bites at all. I threw out my mattress, so I’ve been sleeping with my roommate or on the couch. Both my roommate and I have been using my old washed and dried pillows and two washed and dried blankets. She has not had any bites. The only time I go in my room is during the day to use the bathroom or get some shoes.

Here’s my question about these “mystery bites” though: Two days after we sprayed, I went into the hallway (outside our apt, where we’re keeping our bags of clothes. I put on my coat that had bben hot dryed for 40 minutes. Later that night, while in at church, I got to bites on my upper arm. I got paranoid and put the coat back in another bag to redry. I went 2 more days without bites (still sleeping on the couch or ith my roomate with the same blankets ande pillows).

One night I ironed on high another coat that had been in my closet. (The PCO said they probably weren’t in there because it’s far from my bed). I wore the coat. Later that night, before even going to bed, I got about 8 bites on my shoulder and upper arm. Big itchy welts. I decided to dry everything that was in my closet too. It’s all still in bags. I don’t know if they actually are in my closet or if this is a delayed allergic reaction. Can bites appear 5 days later? No one else seems to be bitten except me. The bites have been appearing in the evening. Last night, I slept on the couch (which was not infested, and was sprayed), which I have had no bites on. I woke up with 2 on my face. All my new bites are close to older bites. I haven’t had any in new areas. Always on the face upper arm, or shoulders. Could these be delayed allergic reactions? How do you treat them? Could the bugs have moved to the couch? It’s so far from the infestation, and I thought My blanket and pillow were clean. We haven’t seen any bugs anywhere. Just evidence of them in my old room. My roomates seem to be fine. They’re in the same places I am. The one I’ve been sleeping with had them years ago in another house, and she was bit then, so I know she’d react, if she were bit.

Are these bugs or just allergies to old bites? how can I be sure and how can I treat them?

1/24: new Tales of Bed Bug Woe thread started. Go here to see it at the top, and continue the conversation there.  I’m closing comments here, since having one active thread on this theme means more people will read your questions and suggestions.  Thanks!

1 nobugsonme January 18, 2007 at 11:31 am

Hi Allergicgirl,

Sorry you’re going through this.
I will start things off, though I know others will have additional ideas and different opinions, and will surely answer some of your questions that I’ve missed.

It is POSSIBLE you’re being bitten a lot in your coats in the evening. It’s my feeling that you need to wash on hot and then dry on hot for a very long time. I do an hour. Others do 2 hours (which I don’t because I assume it will ruin stuff!) But look, dry on hot until the item is bone dry, really hot and dry. And then do 20 minutes MORE. That’s my theory. No one has verified exactly how long it will take. (And don’t believe anyone who tells you they know for sure– I’ve seen a document provided by the Australian government online which says temps below 48F or above 96F kill bedbugs and this is absolutely NOT true. Even seemingly reliable sources are often correct on bed bugs–because remember, they are “new” to most western and northern countries after not being around much for decades.

I am also wondering about those coats. S got her bed bugs, she thinks, after taking a comforter out of storage after 6 months. Where were those coats before this started for you? Do you have any stuff you could have brought into the home?

However, it is ALSO POSSIBLE that the bites are happening another time in another location, but not appearing until evening. Personally, my bites tend to appear in the late afternoon, or whatever time of day I’ve just had a warm shower (heat brings them out for me). If I am not, I feel like I am being bitten even when I am not. Many of us assume these are actual moments of being bitten, until we eventually realize this is a feeling that comes later. We learn this the hard way by throwing off clothes or bedclothes at the moment the feeling occurs, seeing nothing, even using clear tape on our skin to see if we missed something.

Disclaimer: some people really do feel the bites as they happen. But the vast majority do not.

And yes, couches do get bed bugs. Anywhere you sleep could get them. Try to stay put and read our FAQs about isolating your bed and treating your stuff. Since you tossed your bed, you may try and protect your roommate’s bed, or you might do as some have done and use an Aero-type inflatable bed.

2 Frank January 18, 2007 at 1:19 pm

After I isolated my bed, I haven’t had any bites. But any little dots or rashes on my body would make me nervous. And I did get some occasionally. They were much smaller than the bites I used to get, usually not itchy, and disappeared quickly. I’ve stopped getting these since last months, but it still remains a mystery to me. The fact that some people don’t react to the bites or can develop immunity to them scares me, since they won’t detect the infestation until it’s too late. Does anyone have a similar experience to share?

3 Bugalina January 18, 2007 at 1:22 pm

I posted a comment to allergirl…I think..I don’t know where it is…anyways last summer there was a young man who traveled for business and he got bed bugs and he said that he found loads of them on his suits hanging in his closet….so never assume that they don’t go onto hanging clothes in closets…I think they like certain fabrics to lay eggs on..maybe wool..something to attach to….Bugalina

4 nobugsonme January 18, 2007 at 1:28 pm

Bugalina, sorry– your comment is in the original thread. Click the link in the post above. I closed the comments there and moved them here because most people don’t read the old threads, and I thought she’d get more feedback this way.

5 allergicgirl January 18, 2007 at 1:29 pm

i’m going to wash and redry everything… longer this time. the pco should come back in a week. my roomate will isolate her bed. the other one can’t too much becuase it’s between 2 walls. my mattress covers don’t come in the mail for a couple days. when they come, i’ll buy a mattress. until then, i think i’m going to get out of the house for a few days. my roomates don’t want me to sleep with them and there is no place to sleep in my room yet. i don’t want to attract morte to the couch.

to stay with my friend, i’m going to wash adn dry clothes agian, take a few straight from the laundry mat in a new bag, shower, and then go. think that will be okay? any idea HOW TO CLEAN SHOES? Can i just coat them in tons of alcohol? thanks.

6 nobugsonme January 18, 2007 at 1:33 pm

Allergicgirl, you really should read the FAQs carefully. There is a lot of information there, including a FAQ about how NOT to give bed bugs to others when you visit them. I have to warn you though: lots of people here have given bed bugs to friends and loved ones, and the consequences can be very expensive, and upsetting. There’s a very good chance you can transmit them to the people you visit. They can be in your shoes, wallet, anywhere. Moving them around is more likely if there are more bed bugs, but never discount the possibility. I know this isn’t what you want to hear, but I thought you should know. You may be better keeping them in your couch.

7 Bugalina January 18, 2007 at 2:16 pm

I think everyone who has bed bugs should have a spray bottle of Bed Bug Terminator or Kleen Free and soak spray their shoes, before exiting..a lite spray inside the shoe and a heavy spray around the soles…and stitching..and the same with their pocketbooks or backpacks or laptop cases…Also there is a product called BedLam that might be good…Bugalina

8 allergicgirl January 18, 2007 at 2:40 pm

thanks bugalina. where do you get that stuff? internet?

okay, maybe i won’t stay with my friend. one thing i didn’t say was that one of my roomates let her friend stay in my room who had had them over thanksgiving..without my permission. the girl had cleaned her clothes, vacuumed and sprayed her luggage from a beg bug eliminator from duane reade, and had gone home to another state for the holidays. shae came straight from her home out of state to my room. my roomate doesn’t think the bugs came from her, but i haven’t been anywhere or no anyone with bed bugs. the bed bug girl also stayed in our (actually my) couch for a few weeks til she got a new apt. i think she may have gone back to her apt to clean once or twice before coming back to our place. this makes me scared to go anywhere.

i’ve read the faq’s and making my roomates do the same.

where would be good place to store my clothes. they are in bags in the hall. obviously i’ll relaunder them since some still seemed to be in my coat. it’s so hard getting my roomates to take precautions like i am since they are not being bitten. i wonder if i should move.

9 nobugsonme January 18, 2007 at 3:09 pm

I would bet that your roommate’s friend gave them to you. I’d bet a lot of money. And this is a lesson in how easily they spread– she took lots of precautions before going home, went home, came back and still spread them to you. We hear every day of people who infested others after one night’s visit, having taken precautions. Or people who gave them to a relative, despite precautions. Or people who moved, and took them, despite getting rid of everything but the moey in their wallet. Don’t move, fight. And realize that your roommates may begin being bitten.

10 Bugalina January 18, 2007 at 3:44 pm

Allergicgirl you can order Bed Bug terminator by phoning this toll free number and ask for Nat…1866 358 7460 tell him you came from the bed bugger and that you need help..hopefully he will give you a good price..also you should order some stuff from doitmyownpestcontrol..their website is http://www.doyourownpestcontrol.com You need to get busy..read the FAQ’s and follow all advice…tell your roommates that the bed bugs probably came from the girl who slept in your bed and that they are going to have to help with the costs of extermination….you cannot fool around with them..I posted somewhere else that you should NOT move to the sofa..stay in your bed..but cover your mattress and boxspring…first inspect them thoroughly and vacuum them and then start your war……

11 allergicgirl January 18, 2007 at 4:51 pm

i didn’t see on the faq sheet how long to dry clothes. i washed what i could and high heat dried the rest for 40 minutes. i as told 30 minutes was long enough. if there are still some in my coat, how long should i let it be in the drier? should i relaunder everything?

12 nobugsonme January 18, 2007 at 6:18 pm

I would personally say 30 minutes was not long enough. Read my first comment after the post above, and look on the clothing FAQ again– I pasted in there my comments from above about how long to dry items. And added some more tips.

13 Buggylicious January 18, 2007 at 10:35 pm

Laundering and drying clothes at high heat is great, but it doesn’t get rid of the bugs entirely. I have been laundering, ironing, dry cleaning, bagging….and….my bites still appear though I’ve never ever seen a bug….EVER. But I’ve never “dried” my coats either. So maybe that’s why my bites are returning (my room is non-existant, my bed sequestered, my clothes in bags and boxes in the bathtub). I think that what many people are saying is actually the answer, unfortunately. Get rid of everything. Then, write to your congressman , and get actively involved. But in the meantime, just stick it out, do what you can, be proactive at home, try to be thoughtful towards others when coming and going, and just pray…that you get rid of them…

14 jessinchicago January 18, 2007 at 11:54 pm

Welcome, Allergicgirl and Buggylicious.

First, to Allergicgirl, you’re doing great with reading the FAQs and doing your homework. Keep it up and let us know if we can supplement your knowledge in any way. Also, keep us posted. We’re here to listen and help.

To Buggylicious: You cannot eradicate a bedbug infestation by washing, drying, ironing and dry cleaning your clothes. It doesn’t work that way. No, bagging is not the answer. Getting rid of everything is not the answer either.

The answer is to contact a reputable PCO in your area- one that you screen, and one that is knowledgeable. Residual pesticides, applied by someone trained to do so, are the only means of killing entire populations of bedbugs in a home.

Remember- the more time you spend not treating your home, the more likely you are to spread bedbugs to your coworkers, your friends, your family, and innocent people you encounter on a daily basis. Bedbugs love to get into shoes, purses, coats, blouses… If you’re not using a residual pesticide, how do you know bedbugs aren’t crawling into your shoes while you sleep? Or your purse?


15 nobugsonme January 19, 2007 at 1:18 am

Buggylicious– are you having your home treated with pesticides? I am with Jess on this one. When we advise people to wash and dry their clothing on hot, it is never, ever a recommendation that they don’t get a professional pest control operator to treat the place (and do so repeatedly, at 2 week intervals, until they’re bite-free).

Sometimes people give up on such treatment when the first few treatments do not entirely eradicate the problem; that’s a mistake. It commonly takes 3-4 treatments at 2 week intervals.

I also don’t think tossing everything is the best idea. In many cases, your neighbors will scoop up the bounty (despite warning signs), install it in their homes, and you’ll get reinfested down the line.

I do believe I sound like a broken record sometimes, and I apologize!

16 Bugglicious January 19, 2007 at 7:42 am

Thank you, Jess and nobugsome, and yes. My home is in the process of treatment with a very repuatble PCO with residual pesticides, and we’re going on the third spraying this week. And we do plan to keep going every two weeks. My coats are in question though, as I stated earlier. Shoes are in bags, and sprayed before and after wear, purse too. What do you recommend for fur and leather or down coats?

17 allergicgirl January 19, 2007 at 9:51 am

i talked to sean at http://www.bedbugresource.com. he said make sure the drier is large for something like a coat that needs to spread out. don’t put a lot of stuff in with it. i am drying it on high (alone) for 2 hours today and then having it drycleaned. i’m buying airtightight plastic bags before i go to the laundry mat so i can put them in clean ones before i come home. i bought plastic bins to put them in to, so they won’t be going back into any closets or drawers.

as for shoes, bugalina and sean both advised kleen free. it only kills them when it is wet, and in direct contact. so daily cleaning/quarantining is essential. sean also suggested if you have lots of shoes or objects with small crevices, taking them to a pro and having them fumigate them in a chamber with vikane. i think this is expensive, so if you just have a few things, it’s not worth it.

the fact that i was bit on the couch upsets me. it’s my grandfather’s from the 60’s. very modern and a collector’s item. i’m calling the exterminator to let him know because i thought he treated it. i’ll be upset if i have to get rid of it, but i’m prepared.

18 S. January 19, 2007 at 2:52 pm

Regarding DIY sprays, I just called around everywhere for Kleen Free. They had never heard of it at Home Depot, Lowe’s or Ace Hardware. So I ordered some from Amazon.com. A 24-ounce spray bottle is $15. I plan to spray my shoes and purse every time I leave the house. Question: should I spray them when I enter, too? Also, should I put the less-popular shoes in XL ziplocs, or leave them out?

The other DIY spray that I plan to try is the Murphy’s oil soap, diluted with water, on walls and windows. This treatment was recommended by Bugalina. Does anyone know what Murphy’s oil soap does? How long will it last? How often should we spray? Can we spray fabric, like a couch, or just wood furniture and windows?

Also, is it just making the surfaces slippery, or does it actually kill bedbugs?

Thanks for your help!

19 jessinchicago January 19, 2007 at 3:25 pm

Hey Buggylicious- Sorry I misread your post! I thought you were saying that washing, bagging, and tossing everything was the only answer at all- I didn’t realize you’d hired a PCO and were treating as well. My humble apologies. I think there’s a lot of misinformation on the net, and I want so much for people to avoid unnecessary mistakes, so sometimes I am too quick to jump on what appears to be misleading information. Obviously, in this case, I was wrong.

As for your coats- can they be dry cleaned? I think (and I could be wrong- we go back and forth on this issue) that dry cleaning works to kill bedbugs in garments like coats. But you have to tell the dry cleaners that you have bedbugs, so they are careful not to spread them. And when you pick them up, you’ve got to bag them in something other than the original dry cleaning bag- something like an extra large zip loc bag, so that when you bring them into the house, they will be protected. I would choose a washable, durable coat for everyday use, and dry clean and bag the rest until your infestation is gone.

To Allergicgirl and S.- Just keep in mind that the products like Kleen Free and Murphy’s Oil will only kill the bugs it directly contacts. So, you can clean your wood with Murphy’s oil, but unless the solution actually touches or is sprayed on bugs you can see, it’s not going to do anything. Once it’s dry (and that doesn’t take long) it has no effect.

This is not to say that there’s not a place for these products- I would guess that spraying your shoes and purse is good to help protect others (at work, etc.), but you’ve got to remember that they only kill what you spray directly. It might be a good idea to choose a pair or two of shoes that are “wearables,” which you’ll protect every day upon entering your home (by bagging or leaving outside), and then dousing the rest of your shoes with Kleen-Free and quarantining until you infestation is gone.

And as for the couch, Allergicgirl- don’t write it off. I’ve got a big fluffy suede couch here which was treated several times and is now bug-free. Is there mesh on the underside of the couch? Usually, PCOs will rip the mesh off and spray with a residual and Gentrol underneath. It’s probably salvagable, although it will take longer to get rid of the bugs.

Smiles from Chicago.


20 allergicgirl January 19, 2007 at 6:24 pm

thanks jess!

so today i went to bed bath and beyond. i picked up murphy’s oil soap, the vacuum seal space saver bags, double sided foam tape, vaseline, a clothes steamer (which may not be strong enough, so i’ll only use as back up), a new plastic shoe rack, and more detergent with bleach…oh, and cortaid.

polysporin has been good for me for healing the bites and preventing infection. (my surgeon recommended this over neosporin when i had stitches once.) cortaid is good for getting rid of itching and swelling.

Ii’m waiting for my roomates to get home so we can relaunder. i feel like i’m doing this all by myself sometimes. i just cleaned the wooden dining room table with murphy’s oil (s-, it’s just for wood). i don’t think it has bugs, but i’m not taking chances. i took some of it apart, and for other cracks and crevices, i squeezed tons inside them. i plan on isolating the table like i would a bed. yogurt cups and stainless steel bowls are too small, i’m hoping tupperware will work to put under the legs, along with double sided tape and vaseline.

as for the couch, i vacuumed it twice. i called the pco to inform him about it. i’m going to steam clean it tonight before he comes. i read on consumer reports where stanley steemer is the best, otherwise rug doctor rental is good. anything else may not be strong enough. hopefully the pco can come tomorrow and spray.

my roomates aren’t getting bites still..which is good. i think it makes it less real to them though. i’ve pleaded for their help, but i still feel like i’m fighting this war alone sometimes.

i got my national allergy mattress and pillow covers in the mail today. i pick up a new mattress at ikea saturday. my bed is steel, but i’ll isolate it when the time comes. i haven’t been sleeping in there because there is nothing for me to sleep in.

as for my shoes, when the kleen free comes, i will dose them all. i know you have to get every crevice because it’s only a contact killer. therefore, i’ll clean and quarantine. no cute shoes for a while! Or clothes for that matter. poo.

i’ll let you guys know what happens.

one question though? my laptop was often on my bed. i know thesse boogers can get anywhere. has anyone had experience with bedbugs and laptops? i may take it to the mac store to get taken apart and cleaned.

21 Buggylicious January 19, 2007 at 7:52 pm

To Jess: Yeah, thanks. I’m pretty much following all the advice this blog’s been giving me to the best of my capabilities… and I really appreciate everyone’s input.
To AllergyGirl: You and your roommates are in the same boat with the hole in it. It’s like saying “I don’t care what you do on your side of the boat…but I’ll keep my side the way I like”…. But we’re all in the same sinker….
Buggy L.

22 allergicgirl January 19, 2007 at 9:52 pm

i know buggylicious. it’s really bad. they’re not really helping. i’ve talked to them about it. one of them (the girl who let her friend with bed bugs stay in my room), doesn’t even believe we have them because we haven’t seen bugs and she has not been bit. i may just have to move out. i’m going out of town at the end of the month. i asked her to call our landlord about bringing in her exterminator (which is free and apparently better than ours). if she doesn’t and i get one bite when i get back, i’m moving, and they can deal.

as for now, while they are at an art show, i will be steam cleaning the couch with the rug doctor i rented. then i will sleep in her bed. i get my new mattress tomorrow. it will be covered well.

this blog has been really great for me. you guys have been so helpful and supportive during a time when i’m receiving very little. i appreciate you all. i hope we all get through this successfully and soon! xo

23 Bugalina January 19, 2007 at 10:21 pm

Allergic girl…your friends are ignorant…buggy L is so right on..they are in the same boat, with the same leak, …ok so you do what you must do…please inspect all of your drawers inside and out and upside and down…spray inside the drawers…if you have carpet pull up the edges and vacuum and have the exterminator spray behind the edges….look in the tiniest of screw holes..even the TV clicker…radio…anything near your bed…and vacuum around the window silles and moldings and all the baseboards…When you go out of town make certain you don’t carry any with you…you should purchase all the large ziplock bags..target sells them…and pack ALL of your belongings in the ziplocks…and you should dust inside your suitcase with some DE…you should spray and vacuum your suitcase and dust inside of it and put it into double plastic bags until you need it….read all the info you can…Bugalina

24 allergicgirl January 19, 2007 at 10:29 pm

thanks bugalina-
my luggage has been sprayed once, but to be on the safe side, i’m just going to buy some cheap new luggage for my trip and not bring much. i won’t bring my new luggage in the apt and only put laundered clothes in bags. can’t wait til my kleen free comes in for my shoes! i’ll keep you posted. i bet i’ll have to move. grrr.

25 jessinchicago January 19, 2007 at 11:13 pm

B-licious (I kind of like that!)- Again, so sorry for the misinterpretation. I’m really glad you’ve gotten some help from the blog- that’s what we’re here for. I hope you keep asking and commenting.

Allergicgirl- Sounds like you’re on the right track with the trip. You should take a look at our posts regarding moving before you make that decision. I moved and took the bugs with me. Many of us have. It’s not the best option, unless you can be REALLY careful. The last thing you want is reinfestation! I’m sorry to hear that your roommates are not able to acknowledge the problem for what it is, and that you’re going through this alone. Keep being proactive- you’re doing a great job so far.


26 Buggylicious January 19, 2007 at 11:39 pm

AllergicGirl, it will be interesting if you get bitten while in …was it your roommate’s bed.
Bugalina, good idea about cleaning, dusting and bagging suitcases. I will get right on that now with my own….I cleaned them, but didn’t think to bag them since they are not in the part of the house being treated. Hmmmm. Wonder why the exterminator didn’t offer to spray the closets I keep the suitcases stored…???? Huh. well, now I know what my weekend entails.
Jess, thank you again, so don’t sweat it ! Really. You had me at “hello” !!! 🙂 Thanks for your support and for all the fabulous advice. I just keep praying now that it works…..but as Bugalina asks —will it last?
B-Licious (I kinda like that too! 🙂 )

27 nobugsonme January 20, 2007 at 3:19 am

Wow– I was pretty busy on Friday and just got to all this now. Looks like you all got along fine without me though 🙂

Allergicgirl, so many of us are the only ones bitten in our homes. It is hard. Not only do some people not participate, but many of us have loved ones or others close to us who think we’re absolutely CRAZY or at least suffering from “stress” or “overreacting,” since these others don’t experience it, they don’t believe it exists. That’s the worst case scenario, and it happens to many of us.

In a home with several people, like yours, there’s a good chance you won’t be the only one bothered by bed bugs forever, especially if the problem persists for a little while. Sadly, there’s no joy in saying “I told you so,” and hopefully they’ll cooperate so it never comes to that.

28 buggedinbrooklyn January 20, 2007 at 10:21 am

welcome new buggers, you seem to be in great hands.
sadly, my father just passed, so I might not be on for a day or two.
above all, keep fighting, and g-d bless.


29 Buggylicious January 20, 2007 at 10:38 am

To Bugged in Bkln—my deepest condolences. Truly.

30 Bugalina January 20, 2007 at 10:59 am

buggedinbrooklyn…I am very sorry to hear of your loss, G-d Bless you. We are here for you if you need us….

31 nobugsonme January 20, 2007 at 1:12 pm

I am so sorry for your loss.
You and your family will be in my thoughts.

32 jessinchicago January 20, 2007 at 2:21 pm

Oh Brooklyn, I’m so sad to hear this. I’m praying for ya.


33 nobugsonme January 20, 2007 at 6:00 pm

Buggylicious has a question (moved from another older thread):

When you put mineral oil around the bed legs, do you find the dead bugs floating like dead bugs do in the oil? BL

34 Bugalina January 20, 2007 at 10:10 pm

It depends if they are coming up into your mattress or down from your mattress…..I abandoned my mattress…..and several weeks later I found nymphs in the mineral cups….they were attempting to exit the vacated mattress for better feeding grounds…and then got drown in the mineral cups in their attempt to vacate …..if they are already embedded in the mattress and a body remains there sleeping they will have no need to cross the mineral oil moat..they will not die…If the mattress is virgin territory and they attempt to climb up to the body they will not be able to cross the mineral oil barrier….there are always variables……Bugalina aka Deb

35 allergicgirl January 21, 2007 at 10:08 am

where do you get mineral oil. can you use baby oil? i got my new mattress yesterday. it’s covered. i’ll sleep in it tonight, but want to get oil. so far i’ve had no bites when i’ve slept with my roomies. and they’re starting to help! yeah!

also, where can i get a spray thing for the diatomaceous earth. a friend had a respirator, you can get them at home depot or ace hardware.

bugged in brooklyn-i’m so sorry about your dad. mine passed when i was young too. you and your fam will be in my prayers. take care of yourself.

36 Bugalina January 21, 2007 at 1:12 pm

You can use baby oil..which I think is mostly mineral oil…make absolutely certain that your blankets DO NOT TOUCH THE FLOOR and that your bed is not against the wall…you can buy a hand bellows from http://www.doyourownpestcontrol.com its a great tool…in the meantime you can use a paint brush to spread it around…just make certain its not clumpy.. a nice thin layer….you can get bed risers from Bed Bath and Beyond…or maybe online.. the kind sold for college kids…to raise the beds up for storage underneath…DON’t store anything underneath your bed and clear out as much clutter as possible…it hurts but sometimes you have to throw some stuff away…get more organized and store your belongings in plastic bins with tight sealed covers….target has a good selection….bugalina

37 Buggylicious January 21, 2007 at 6:35 pm

Thanks for answering the question about the mineral oil. I have not yet put it beneath the legs of my own bed, but it seems like it could be a very good form of double death to bed bugs (the first would be crossing the PCO’s residual and if they win that battle and make it to the mineral oil they will surely drown!) I have wanted to try this method, but I have a tiny dog that I am afraid will try and drink the oil! Is there a technique that people use to protect the legs of the bed, by wrapping it with seran wrap, then placing the legs in something that will keep little canines away? (besides keeping the dog out of the room, which is impossible, for the god and for me, for the state I am in, sleeping with my dog is the ONLY and last pleasure I have right now that gives me happiness right now) .

38 Buggylicious January 21, 2007 at 6:36 pm

(sorry, spelled DOG wrong in one of the places in the parentheses above…dyslexia, please forgive me)

39 Bugalina January 21, 2007 at 8:48 pm

Buggy you make me laugh ! I hope I didn’t confuse anyone when I described using the paint brush..I meant it for applying the DE or Drionne..the hand bellows is the best but if one doesn’t have it then i read that dipping a paint brush in the DE and shaking it off lightly works…..some people have used fly trap tape or double sided carpet tape around the legs of their beds…I purchased small little stainless steel bowls .. I think at a hardware store and I placed the bed legs into them and filled them with mineral oil…..its all too bizarre…we shouldn’t have to be going thru such lengths to rid ourselves of a blood sucking bug…where is help !!! Bugalina

40 Buggylicious January 21, 2007 at 9:24 pm

Oh I’m so glad Bugalina! What else is there in this fight if we can’t have a laugh or a smile every now and then?

41 S. January 21, 2007 at 11:25 pm

I want to understand something – does the mineral oil have something poisonous in it that kills bedbugs, or is it just slippery and will drown them? Like, would water work or can they swim through water?

Also, same question with vaseline. Does it kill them, or just make it hard for them to walk up?

Thanks. Hey Buggylicious, I am a little worried about your dog. I’ve heard bedbugs can ride around on dogs. Not sure how to solve that, but thought I’d put it out there for others to respond to. Can you give your dog a bath before going to bed each night?

Once your bed is isolated, I feel like you have to be extra careful bringing anything into it. I’ve had five straight days of no bites in bed, since isolating, and with each passing day of good sleep, I am like, MORE nervous about somehow ruining this single place of security.

42 Buggylicious January 21, 2007 at 11:47 pm

To S, About bugs riding on dogs: You have a good point, S. My dog is like a little dust mop, his paws pick up every little speck in the house (he’s a poodle) and since he’s so black it’s difficult to find anything hiding on him. He is frontlined though….and I brush him every so often, but I am reluctant to bathe him daily because his skin will become flaky. Food for thought, S.

43 nobugsonme January 22, 2007 at 12:54 am

Frontline is good. I think Advantage (another brand from the vet) can be better. Also, get an Advantic collar: they kill ticks (and I think tick eggs) and I’d guess they’d be a good thing to have on him.
My vet gives us a free Advantic collar with the Advantage; it’s more expensive than non-prescription stuff. But not that much, and at times like this… Anyway, the other thing: tha Advantic collar works well. I once pulled a paralyzed tick off my dog when I was in tick country. It was on its back wiggling its legs slightly, not being tick-y at all. It made me happy, and I think it could do some damage to a bed bug.

44 Bugalina January 22, 2007 at 9:18 am

S..mineral oil is used as a preventative to stop them from climbing up into your bed…I had abandoned one of my beds and actually found some nymphs in the mineral cups that apparently were attempting to climb down the bed..looking for me…smeared on vaseline also prevents them from crawling up and or down…neither one is a poison…Knowing how resilient these bugs are I would think that they just might be able to swim through water…a short distance anyways…the mineral oil is too thick to permit any possible swimming..but I wouldn’t feel safe using just water….Bugalina

45 Buggylicious January 22, 2007 at 9:26 pm

Has anyone gotten bitten on their scalp or front or back hairline? I read somewhere that bed bugs don’t like to go through hair.

46 nobugsonme January 24, 2007 at 3:02 pm

1/24: new Tales of Bed Bug Woe thread started. Go here to see it at the top, and continue the conversation there. I’m closing comments here, since having one active thread on this theme means more people will read your questions and suggestions. Thanks!

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