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Bed Bugs follow my dad [update: success!]

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  1. OOEY

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Wed Jul 31 2013 12:12:00
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    Hi everyone,

    My senior parents were recently INFESTED by bedbugs. As my father was a borderline hoarder, they essentially lost everything and walked away with the clothes on their backs. I moved them into a small apartment in the basement of my house and now we have them...something I knew was likely. We had the house treated with a Pest Control company 5 days ago. They used a steamer on all couches, beds and boxsprings, undersides of chairs were spot treated, residual dust was applied to all outlets and along baseboards and encasements were placed on beds and boxsprings. In addition, I have used a quality hand steamer labelled for the killing of bedbugs every 2 days on our sofas. Bedding is washed and dried on high heat daily and clothing has been kept in tightly sealed bags (both clean and dirty) My father is largely an invalid and had been sleeping on the couch but moved to the bed last night. I thought I had been getting a hold on the problem but then I found castings and nymphs on the sheets this morning where he slept. They seem to be ON him. We bathe him and keep him in clean clothes daily as well as steaming his wheelchair (largely, fabric, metal and plastic) daily. Am I expecting too much too early or am I missing a crucial part of treatment? It seems they follow him wherever he goes. We take a step forward and he brings us 2 steps back. Should I put him in respite care until we can get this under control?

  2. cilecto

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Wed Jul 31 2013 21:10:13
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    One of our experts, Paul Bello, says that the "secret" to bed bug eradication is to get them everywhere they live. So, if you have BB in your father's space, there may be clusters you're missing. It's also difficult to kill eggs. The ideas in A comprehensive guide like this one might help. Also, to be sure we're chasing the right bug, please post what you're finding for ID. If you have bed bugs and the techs indicate that your parents can't be around, then respite care could be an option. If you need fast relief and are not being constantly exposed to new bed bugs from outside (like at a day program or treatment center), then whole-house heat or Vikane could be options.

    Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night...
    - Psalms 91:5-7

    (Not an pro)
  3. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 7:24:04
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    Hi,

    It may be that the issue has gone on for long enough that the infestation is engrained and you will literally find bedbugs in all sorts of things. We are dealing with a case at present which is rather nasty and extremely engrained. We have had to remove most of the contents of the property for working on off site as its the most efficient way without destroying things.

    It may be that the wheelchair needs similar attention such as fitting it in an PackTite closet or finding your local Insect Inferno trailer.

    The other option is that he is coming into contact with a source of bedbugs and thus topping up the infestation. I have seen this in both private residences and sheltered accommodation and although we tend not to think of the elderly are likley to be re-exposing themselves it would not be the first time.

    As a rule of thumb though the longer they had bedbugs the longer it will take to resolve the issue which may mean multiple treatments.

    Hope that helps.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    I am happy to answer questions in public but will not reply to message sent directly or via my company / social media. I am here to help everyone and not just one case at a time.

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC I openly disclose my vested interest in Passive Monitors as the inventor and patent holder. Since 2009 they have become an integral part in how we resolve bed bug infestations. I also have a professional relationship with PackTite in that they distribute my product under their own branding. I do not however receive any financial remuneration for any comments I make about pro
  4. OOEY

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 10:35:03
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    Thanks for your responses!
    Cilecto, the PCO is coming back next week for the 2nd treatment (14 after the first) I will be sure to indicate to them that the BBs seem to be concentrated near the areas my father frequents in order to ensure that they are diligent in finding all of their hiding spots. Since a wooden bookcase style headrest is on the bed, I am going to clean it thoroughly with Murphy's oil soap and wrap the 2 wooden supports with carpet tape at the bottom...all the legs of the metal bedframe are already in powdered 2 rimmed "traps" that were supplied by the PCO and the mattress and bed frame are encased with covers also supplied. Hopefully this will help the process along. I will also continue daily steaming of his chair.
    David, my parents moved in on a Saturday and we had a K9 in 4 days later who "hit" on his bed and sofa, the PCO came Friday - 6 days after they moved in. As I mentioned, my parents came came only with the clothes on their backs (fresh from dryer), meds (which have since been sealed in small airtight containers, and the wheelchair...their wallets were placed in the freezer)...because of this I am hoping that we caught the problem early and that we are not engrained. My dad is largely an invalid who requires assistance moving from one room to another so it is impossible for him to have come in contact with another source and is bringing them back.
    Last night I killed a 2nd or 3rd stage bb which had been on my clothing when I had been downstairs to tend to him. I shook out all of my clothing over the bathtub and out it fell...quickly changed and put clothes in a tightly tied garbage bag.
    I read this morning about thermal treatment and am heartened to know that if all else fails we have this option available....any thoughts on thermal? Is it really a one shot deal?
    After reading several posts on this site I am grateful that the problem we have so far (fingers crossed) seems to be minor in comparison to many others. Only a few sightings and few bites.
    I keep reminding myself that everyday is one day closer to resolution...

  5. OOEY

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 10:39:00
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    Another thought...my father seems to be particularly sensitive to bites so my mother had been slathering him with Noxema, Gold Bond and other assorted creams before bed to ease his itchiness...could the BBs have stuck to this goopy stuff and this were transferred back and forth between bed and sofa? My mom had slept in the bed alone several nights prior and there was no evidence of castings until he slept in it and then they were only on his side of the bed. He's like patient zero!

  6. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 11:29:51
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    Hi OOEY,

    Now this is really an odd one because what you have described is not technically possible, let me explain why.

    If they only came with the clothes off their backs and fresh from a dryer then there would be no bedbugs. Therefore they would arrive with you bedbug free and as bedbugs are an exposure pest that you have to come into contact with if he has not left the house then he has not been anywhere to get bedbugs.

    Now if all you are seeing is cast skins then these could easily survive the transfer and drying process but although they are classified as confirming bedbugs they are also a transferable sign.

    Either something infested has come across or there is still the need to resolve the source of the issue. Is there any home assistance involved that is common to both locations?

    David

  7. buggyinsyracuse

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 11:58:09
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    David,

    As the OP stated that it seems like her father is "ground zero," do you think the BBs could have been transferred via the wheelchair? I know it's not a typical area for them to congregate, but seeing as you have all of this free time today, I figured I would ask. Thanks!

  8. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 12:03:50
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    Hi,

    Yes which is why I mentioned it early on and suggested two solutions.

    However if they left one location in only clean dry clothes and the wheelchair was left I would be more concerned with how they got into that chair.

    I have a very binary logic when it comes to bedbugs which is why I posted above. I approach the world in a CSI forensic type mode and just like watching the show all the subtle signs are visualised in my head and compared to what i have seen before. In fact I am on the scrounge for anyone who has access to google glass because I think that could be a very powerful tool for doing this kind of work and is as close as I can configure to remote working.

    David

  9. buggyinsyracuse

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 12:15:18
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    Thanks, David. Glad we get to "put up with you" a little while longer today.

  10. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 12:22:48
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    Hi,

    Well at least another hour today in the office, its all of my research notes and data from the last 9 years and just the kind of data needed to create a neural interface version of me and far more likely to work than my combination iPhone bedbug monitor, that was ap-static.

    David

  11. OOEY

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 15:00:37
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    Thanks, David for all your input. I appreciate the info. I spoke with the PC guy today and he said the chair was the likely culprit as he spent a great deal of time with it and it had lots of folds and hidey spots. We did get him a new chair which is much easier to steam and clean so hopefully that'll help. I did look into Insect Inferno...there don't appear to be any in the Toronto area. Do you think regular steaming will help? If not, how often should I have the chair heat treated (If I can find anyone who does it around here)? My concern is that we have positively identified that they are still here and I don't want to heat treat it only to have them re-infest it. We have reached out to a Senior's Gov't sponsored programme and they are sending someone next week to evaluate what level of care he'll need then we can get him into a Nursing Home or Respite Centre so he won't have to deal with BBs too. They are well aware of the BB situation and the wheelchair so maybe I'll have it heat treated before he goes to ensure no spread of the little beasts to yet another location. Who knows, maybe they won't take him until we have fully beaten the BBs. The PCO said we'd likely still see nymphs after the initial spraying because they cannot kill the eggs; that's why they always automatically schedule a second spraying two weeks later - to kill the hatchlings before they can mature enough to breed...is this standard? It's my understanding that the majority of problems are more likely resolved in 3-4 treatments... again, since my parents only moved in 12 days ago I am hoping that the problem is small and will be done sooner rather than later.
    Susan

  12. OOEY

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Thu Aug 1 2013 15:01:51
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    And, thank you too, Buggy In Syracuse for your input...I don't feel so alone in this fight now guys!

  13. cilecto

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Fri Aug 2 2013 7:35:03
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    Wheelchairs would seem relatively easy to treat with vacuum, steam or soap, a brush and hot water. Many parts come off for cleaning or replacement.

    David (bed bug co uk) has a technique to "optimize" a bed, so that BB congregate on a part of the bed where you can easily spot them (and remove them). Perhaps something like that could be done for a wheelchair.

  14. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Fri Aug 2 2013 7:43:20
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    Hi,

    Yes I can create something for wheelchairs but the down side is that wheelchair design has moved on a lot in recent years and to be effective I would need to have a few current designs to optimise against. The two chairs I have in the warehouse are of the older design and would be less useful to work with.

    If someone can get me access to appropriate wheelchairs in London or time things for a trip to NY I will happily donate my time to the project.

    David

  15. OOEY

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    Posted 6 years ago
    Fri Aug 9 2013 13:01:41
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    update.... Just had 2nd spraying and found two 3rd or 4th stage nymphs clinging to the underside of the mattress encasement of my father's bed when I went in to re-assemble the house post treatment.I quickly dispatched them with rubbing alcohol. Very frustrating indeed! my parents moved in approx. 3 weeks ago and had first treatment of steaming and residual spray 2 weeks ago. Have taken every precaution including bagging/laundering all clothing, laundering bedding and pillows daily, removed all clutter so we are living like monks etc. etc.....my mother and I have been steaming the sofa and wing chair in the adjacent room almost daily and have steamed his new wheelchair daily. PCO guy said it would likely take 3 treatments to get the all clear and I have booked a K9 again to come in before the 3rd treatment to help establish whether we are missing anything. Today the PCO focused on placing a broadcast spray on the carpet beneath the beds/sofas etc after I had advised that the problem seemed to be focused in the sleeping area and living room in the basement which my father frequents. He advised that we could resume steaming in a few days time but I am really itching to get at that mattress! I guess I am just surprised that these little buggers have gotten such a toe hold so quickly. I know David suggested a more thorough treatment of his wheelchair....I'll look into that more thoroughly today. The good news is that there appears to be no indication of them at all upstairs where my husband and I live....though the PCO said he found no visual evidence downstairs when he left too....and yet, there they were.

  16. faustino024

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Jun 22 2016 5:00:19
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    So....what was the outcome?

    You have to provide an update! How could you just leave us hanging?

  17. OOEY

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Jun 22 2016 9:47:14
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    Lol! Turns out they were nesting in the wheelchair. Brought it to the dump right before final spray and got a new (and much better) one once we were given the all clear by the PCO guys and their dogs. What a nightmare! Steaming, maintaining a rigorous bagging routine and diligence was the final solution. Hope to never encounter these little nasties again. Dad is now in long term care and enjoying a bug free life. Hang in there bedbug sufferers, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

  18. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Jun 22 2016 23:43:33
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    Thanks for the update OOEY! Moving to "success stories".

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  19. faustino024

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sun Jun 26 2016 17:53:10
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    Thanks very much for returning to provide the update.

    I am glad to hear that the problem has been eliminated for you and your father. What a nightmare that must've been! These pests are so ingrained... once they find their way in, it is so difficult to eradicate them!

    Just when you think you've seen the last of them... you see one scurry across a blanket or couch or whatever. I am hoping that I can completely eliminate my problem soon. I am moving, and I do NOT want them to follow me. But I also can't afford to abandoned all of my belongings and start fresh!


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