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DESPERATE: in between treatments and need advice. Will the nightmare end???

(6 posts)
  1. CHelpMe

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Jul 12 2018 7:36:55
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    Hi all: reading this site and the forums have given me a modicum of sanity and calm amid a horrific experience. I figured it was time for me to ask for help from those who have actually been through the wringer.

    We had BBs detected and confirmed two days apart by two separate PCOs: one with a K9 who came in and found evidence of live bugs in our bedroom and couch, and one who did a visual in those same spots, two days later.

    First handler found one bug casing on box spring and one on couch: second handler found same one on box spring, with just a visual inspection.

    We did the whole rigmarole of heating everything in the laundry, alcohol-ing what we could, etc., and had a chemical extermination on Monday, July 2nd. We returned to our apartment on Wednesday night and unpacked all of our stuff on Thursday - Saturday (which I'm cursing now...had the PCO told us to in advance, I would've just left stuff in plastic bags until after the second treatment to be extra safe). I woke up this past Monday with a row of bites.

    I seem to react very promptly and dramatically to them, so I'm pretty certain it happened from when we got back and was not a delayed reaction from before the treatment.

    The PCO sent someone back and he found one dead bug and one sluggish live one (which we killed) behind picture frames in my room, and a dead one on a shelf in my son's room. The one in my son's room is the most upsetting part, because while it was dead, it was the first time we saw any evidence in his room whatsoever. He's only eight months old.

    The PCO is coming again tomorrow morning to do a second treatment.

    A few Qs:
    1. They're telling me that we don't need to make ourselves crazy by running everything we own through the dryer again, but should we? I'm terrified that one crawled its way across my bedroom and is inside clothing. If it takes doing that to really get rid of them, I'll do it.

    2. What should we be doing in between treatments? I'm worried that we're going to bring them from room to room and make the problem worse. Moving out temporarily isn't an option and I know wouldn't help, anyway, because of how they work.

    3. Our furniture (my son's crib, our bed) is built in such a way that Climb-Up Interceptors and the like won't work, because the legs are too big and angled in such a way that they won't fit. Are there any other options for keeping them from crawling up the bed legs and catching them?

    Basically, I'm having a difficult time feeling like they're everywhere around me and flipping out that one may be somewhere in an object between my living room and bedroom (the two infestation spots) and will not die, and then the nightmare starts over again. To make matters worse, they found one at my workstation and now I'm confined to working from home for a minimum of four weeks, until the third-party PCO that my employer uses sends a K9 in to confirm that they're all gone.

    Sorry for the book, but I'm desperate for help. Any advice welcome and appreciated.

  2. CHelpMe

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Jul 12 2018 8:03:54
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    Of note:

    - After our first treatment, they put mattress and box spring encasements on. Both before the encasements were on and after, we haven't seen any fecal stains or blood stains.

    - We have to leave tomorrow when the treatment is being done and can't return until Sunday. We were at my parents' house multiple times before we realized that we had them - they are having a K9 come in today to confirm that they don't have them.

    - Since I'm now home working all day, is it bad that I'm sitting in another room, just emitting heat and carbon dioxide for hours on end? I don't want to draw them to another spot (though I've been told by the PCOs that the goal of staying IS to draw them out so they encounter the poison and die).

    This whole experience is so disruptive and I can't stop my brain from going to terrible places. It feels like the nightmare will never end.

    Any help super appreciated.

  3. HifromChi

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Jul 12 2018 9:44:41
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    It sounds like you're approaching this in all the right ways, the only other thing I would suggest is possibly putting some cimexa down in areas it won't be kicked up or disturbed (along floorboards, in between mattresses and box springs, my PCO lightly dusted every nook and cranny of my bed frame as well and even put some inside the encasement's he put on, he put it under the cushions of furniture and turned over things to lightly dust the bottoms of furniture as well, it works really well in conjunction with spraying. A multi-prong approach is usually the most successful. I know you have an 8 month old at home so check with the PCO regarding safety and use around children. As a note, a little goes a long way.

    You can still put passive monitors like climb-ups near the legs of furniture that it won't fit in, you can lightly dust the legs with talc, that creates a slippery surface, bed bugs aren't the most graceful climbers. Make sure to keep your beds away from the walls if you have climb-ups installed on the legs, make it an island, that keeps the creeps from making their way to you when you're sleeping which helped with my sanity and anxiety when it was time for bed, otherwise I felt like they were crawling all over me. Continue to sleep in your beds though, this will draw them out and encourage them to cross into the chemicals. Easier said than done, I know.

    Regarding your work situation, don't be so sure you're the one that brought them to work, that could have been where you picked them up, there's really no way to know for sure that you were the source, so don't beat yourself up about that. It can happen to anyone, anywhere.

    Hoping you are in the clear soon, a lot of us have beat this problem, so keep your chin up!

  4. CHelpMe

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Jul 12 2018 10:07:58
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    HifromChi, thank you so much for the response. I've decided that being in the middle of this situation is akin to true, very real trauma, and that it isn't hyperbolic to call it so - I'm so emotionally fragile right now as a result of this nonsense that the kindness in your response made me a little emotional, and I'm not ashamed to admit it.

    Is Cimexa suggested over food-grade DT? I've seen on a few posts that food-grade DT may not be as great as advertised, and I don't want anything that can be easily disturbed and cause harm to my son. Your recommended use of Cimexa sounds like it wouldn't expose him/us to it too much. I'll definitely check with our PCO on their advice on using it.

    We're continuing to sleep in our bed, difficult as it is. I haven't been bitten in a few days (knock on non-BB infested wood ), which may also be because I'm slathering myself in lavender oil and sleeping in long sleeves and leggings.

    We'll put talc on the legs, for sure. A question that perhaps you can answer: I've read that isolating the bed might not be great because they might go elsewhere for a food source, but seems to me that they'd emerge looking for us, just the same as they would if the bed wasn't isolated, and then encounter the poison/Climb-Ups on the way. All of that to say - it sounds like a good idea to me, but it won't backfire by sending them searching elsewhere if they can't get to us, right?

    I was the only one at work whose workstation was affected, but these issues started right when I returned back from maternity leave. Though I'll never know where they came from, and it could've just as easily been something I picked up on my commute, the timing seems a little coincidental to me...

    Thank you again.

  5. HifromChi

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Jul 12 2018 10:37:28
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    I'm happy to send some kindness your way, I know that I wasn't kind to myself when growing through this, and that I just needed someone to tell me it would eventually all be okay, and it was!

    From what my PCO told me and what I've learned here, is Cimexa is more effective that DE, and allegedly not as harmful if the dust gets kicked up, but again make sure to touch base with your PCO to check the pro's and con's there in regards to little ones being present. DE can take longer to take effect, where Cimexa seems to do more damage, faster, and we all want that!

    There are mixed reviews on making your bed an island, some say you should let them get to you in your bed, others say just by being in it, you're doing the same thing. I honestly had to know that my bed remained bug free, that that was the one space I could go to to escape the creepy crawlies, or I think I would have really come unhinged from lack of sleep. There are a lot of threads here about it, do a little search and you'll see the different points of view. I'm happy to report that even though I did the island thing, between heat steaming, wet chemical sprays and Cimexa, my problem was knocked out in 2 treatments. I'm hoping the same for you!

    Keep us posted!

  6. CHelpMe

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Jul 12 2018 10:53:04
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    All of that is good to know about Cimexa. Even though I'll double-check with our PCO, sounds v. promising and something that we'll likely use, as long as it's safe for our little guy.

    The lack of sleep is one of the worst parts. I keep waking up at odd hours and turning on my phone flashlight to scour the bed. So far, still haven't seen a live one and would likely become unhinged if I did, so I should probably just stop...

    I am crossing my fingers that this second treatment does the trick. They aren't heat steaming but I am going to ask that they do. My employer is prepared to pay for a third treatment from their company, which does do steam treating, so while I want this to end sooner rather than later, at least that's in our back pocket if treatment #2 doesn't do it.

    The little kindness goes a long way. I sincerely appreciate it and am sending you a virtual hug from afar!


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