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I Really Need Advice - Please :(

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  1. buggerinLA

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Tue Feb 14 2012 13:43:34
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    I'm sorry to keep bombing (no pun intended) this board, but I do not handle stress very well, and I need advice and support. This community seems to provide that, so I am going to share a little more in hopes that you very knowledgeable and awesome people can help me.

    My backstory: http://bedbugger.com/forum/topic/found-dried-dead-bed-bug-advice

    For those who want a condensed version:

    I found a bunch of dead old bed bugs in my apartment last week. I anecdotally thought that they came from my neighbor who sprayed on her own 3 months ago (she told me in passing), not using a PCO. I was out of town for a few weeks, so it is possible the bugs were having a free-for-all on my bed when I was gone. When I came back into town this past Sunday, I found 3 dead bugs (Last Sunday) -- 2 on the floor and one in my bed sheet. I freaked out and called the landlord. She called the PCO the next morning.

    The PCO came in (Last Monday) and sprayed DE all over everything. I didn't stay at my place for a week out of pure fear. I have very bad anxiety, and I found it hard to feel safe there, despite not having found any live ones since being back in town. I knew about the risks of spreading to others, so I basically stood in my skivvies in my friend's apartment's laundry room, cleaning a fresh pair of clothes and my shoes in the washer/dryer to make sure I wouldn't bring anything into her place. Some of you may disagree with this, but just being in my house caused such severe panic attacks, that I couldn't endure it.

    I laundered everything the next day and lived out of a quarantined bag at a friend's place, making sure I didn't wear or bring anything over that could have been infested. All my clothing is in my place now, sealed in ziplocs. I did my due diligence and cleaned my apartment, leaving the DE along the baseboards and on the mattress. I got a very good mattress cover and sealed it with tape at the zipper. I sealed up every sliver of a crack on my metal bed frame with strong duct tape. I got climb ups for my bed as well, and never saw anything in them this whole past week.

    I thought I did everything right. I actually thought I went OVERBOARD for not ever seeing a live bug, but again, I'm a little neurotic. So better safe than sorry, right? I wanted to take every preventative measure so I, nor any neighbors, would be affected by this. I urged my landlord to spray the whole building, but because of cost, they refused.

    The PCO that came in told me NOT to wipe down my metal bed frame or mattress that were coated in DE, rather to just put a cover on it and I'd be good to go. This seems like a stupid mistake.

    For 3 days this week I saw nothing. A dead bug here or there, but likely spiders who had been affected by the DE. I thought I was in the clear, but knew DE takes weeks to work, and that eventually some dead ones would be coming out to die. Fine, I can handle the dead ones. Dead ones are good ones. All the dead ones I found were adults, so that weirdly assured me more that no new infestation was cropping up in my place.

    The last 2 days were great. I was back in my place, still living out of bags, but being very vigilant of changing clothing and keeping a quarantined laundry bag. I did inspections mornings and night of my bed and frame. I didn't see anything at all. It was encouraging and I started to be able to sleep at night.

    Then it happened.

    This morning I woke up and started to fold up my bedding. Lo and behold, out crawls a baby nymph bed bug, skittering across my bed sheets. I froze with fear. I was paralyzed. I watched it crawl away but finally caught it with tape. I looked at closely and compared pics online. After weeks of looking at bed bugs, I was able to quickly and sadly identify it as an nymph, with a tiny amount of blood in it. I examined my body for bites and found a few small itchy marks that were not there the night before. I am fearing the worst now...the nymphs have hatched and are starting to feed. Starting the cycle all over again.

    Now to the advice I seek....what can I do? Is there even anything? I feel helpless, like many other BBers.

    My lease is over March 1st, and I am moving out of my apartment. I'm scared to even sleep there until I can move. I was going to get rid of my cheap Ikea disposable furniture and just start over with clothes, my TV, and my laptops (work issued, cannot ditch them). Am I an idiot for this? I cannot stay in my place any longer anyway, and I'm scared I will move them into a new place. I need to know what I should do with this stuff?

    Is there anything I can do for the next few weeks to kill these nymphs or other eggs on my bed frame/mattress? It seems like they found a spot on the bed frame to lay eggs (the mattress is covered). I still plan to get rid of the bed when I move, but I want to kill these little f*ckers and make sure they don't keep spreading to other places in my apartment, since I will be out of town for work basically until I move out. I want to protect my place the best I can while I'm gone, and since there is no host for them to feed on, I fear they will spread to my other possessions over the next 2 weeks.

    Is there anything I can do to kill eggs? What about on electronics?

    I plan to get a PackTite and clean everything in there that I am bringing into my new place (my tv wont fit in that though). I am going to relaunder everything again, even though its in bags. Does this plan sound insane? (I'm sure I do), but like I said...I need words of advice and encouragement.

    I thank anyone who read this far.

  2. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Tue Feb 14 2012 14:00:40
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    Hi,

    Is it possible that you still have the sample and can take a picture / scan.

    I appreciate you may have ID'ed it as a bedbug but there have been more than a few where through fear people have been determined it was bedbugs only to find out much, much later that it was a pscocid.

    One of the reasons why we are all so hot on visual confirmation is that we NEVER want to see people go through that again.

    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
  3. buggerinLA

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Tue Feb 14 2012 14:11:44
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    David,

    Unfortunately, I do not have a photo of it. I know this sounds crazy, but my anxiety was in overdrive and I just crushed the thing and tossed in the trash.

    Feeling stupid about this 20 minutes later, I tried digging through my trash but couldn't find it at all. It was on a small piece of tape. I took a look at psocids, it didn't look like that. I understand you can't advise me on what the bug was, which is fine, but I did have a PCO treatment last week where they confirmed the dead bugs I found were indeed BBs.

    I am more wondering what to do in the meantime about my bed frame (I never wiped it down from the DE treatment), and more importantly, the fact that I am moving in 2 weeks (and going out of town this Friday until I have to move out of my place).

    Does alcohol really do anything to kill eggs? I keep reading misleading info all over the place. I'm looking for a way to clean this frame so that nothing will hopefully hatch while I am out of town and spread to the rest of my unit...or worse...building.

  4. buggerinLA

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Tue Feb 14 2012 14:14:42
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    It did look EXACTLY like this bug on the left, even with the brown spot (not my photo). Ignore the bug on the right.

    http://www.bed-bugs-handbook.com/image-files/bedbug2ndinstar.jpg

  5. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Wed Feb 15 2012 10:08:12
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    Hi,

    You sent me a list of questions by PM but as it says on my profile I prefer to answer questions on the forum so that others can benefit from the information and that it all goes down on record. At the end of the day I give up my time to help all not just those who send me a message.

    Firstly from what you have described you are talking about a recent infestation that is still at the low levels. When an infestation is introduced to an area the bedbugs aim at being as close to a source of food as possible which is why the ground zero sites are always bed, sofa or places where people spend long period of time stationary. Once these areas are colonised the infestation spreads out and eventually after months or misuse of aerosol based insecticides into the less hospitable items such as electronics.

    At the stage you are at worry about appliances is a waste of energy and will only add to your anxiety when it is simply not justified unless you have already counted hundreds of bedbugs in the property and found them close tot he appliances.

    You asked about rubbing alcohol and eggs, I cant answer that as I have never used alcohol as a contact killer I would always crush any eggs I encountered and with the new systems we use they kill eggs on contact anyway. That having been said if you bed was treated with DE I would not clean it until you are ready to reapply DE once again, generally this is on about a 2 week cycle as over cleaning and obsessing adds to anxiety and that is not emotionally helpful to you.

    There are good FAQ's and threads on moving which give the information better than I can (or have time to summarise here) and likewise with visiting friends and family. Ideally you should keep your bed occupied at night to ensure the maximum treatment efficiency.

    You also focused on the risk of spreading eggs, the answer to which is back at the start of this reply, the way that bedbugs colonise areas is close to host first. All good parents want to ensure that children have good access to food bedbugs are no different. They are extremely unlikely to start depositing eggs on surfaces of items away from food and would certainly not scurry out lay and egg on your shoes and go back to the bed.

    Before making that decision to move or not I would advise you to check with all adjoining neighbours to see if they are suffering as well, newsletter link below:

    http://www.bedbugbeware.com/spreadtheword.html

    If non of them have bedbugs then you are actually better of staying put and no moving until you work out what the source of the infestation in your case is / was otherwise you may just move and still come into contact with it.

    If one of them does have an issue at least you know where it came from and can encourage them to get treated sooner rather than later so they are no longer the source of your issue.

    Also read the FAQ's on identification so you can check the next location before you move in and start monitoring from day 1 so that you can deal with any infestation at the early stage to limit its impact and any worry/anxiety.

    I hope that explains.

    David

  6. buggerinLA

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Wed Feb 15 2012 17:59:32
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    Thanks for your reply.

    I now see and agree that the likelihood of spreading eggs from shoes or clothes that were left out in my kitchen (on a chair) for a day or so have a minimal chance of having eggs that could have spread. I am only paranoid as I don't want to subject anyone to BBs, as we all know how much it sucks.

    That said, I did follow your advice already and had informed my neighbor that I share a wall with in a multi-unit building. Since 2007 there have been several reports of BBs in the building (I never knew that site existed until after I moved in!). My neighbor confirmed she had an infestation a few months ago and tried to treat it herself. My landlord and PCO both believe that is the cause of my current infestation.

    I am not just moving bc of BBs, but rather I need to leave to move into a bigger apartment with my partner who is moving to LA. So we were already planning our move before BBs. There is no way for me to stay in my infested unit and ride out the treatment.

    I am going out of town for the next 2 weeks. I have left my bed coated in DE in the middle of the room. I have climb ups installed and have stripped the bed. All my clothes are in bags and everything is mostly packed up. When I get back into town, I am moving. Simply put. I plan to dispose of all my furniture as it was crappy IKEA anyway and I don't need it in my new place.

    I am also buying a PackTite to treat my small items. I am glad I don't need to get rid of my TV. It is rather large and was very expensive. I don't have a severe infestation (yet), but I feel like if eggs are indeed hatching on my bed frame, the DE should be killing them in the coming weeks, right? Especially with no host around to feed on.

    That said, I informed my landlord that the adjoining unit should be sprayed and they agreed to spray for her. So at least there is hope that some of the building will be treated. I feel like I can be responsible for only so much. It seems they had bugs in the building for years and refused to do anything about it until I started complaining.

    Now I am moving out. Though I am very scared of bringing them to my new place. I will remain vigilant and follow the FAQs about moving.

    I am out of my apartment now and living out of brand new, clean bags with all clean clothing that was laundered and dried for 90 minutes on super high heat. I dried my shoes for 90 mins. As long as the bugs never made their way into my car, I see no reason how I can spread them to others....as long as they aren't hiding in my computer!!!!!!!!!

  7. buggerinLA

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Wed Feb 15 2012 18:07:45
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    I want to point out that in the FAQs it says I must be in my bed during treatment, but unfortunately I am out of town for work. Is this going to be a problem, even though I am moving when I get back into town?

    I feel like I don't have the option to follow all the rules we're supposed to do. I have to move March 1st and I am out of town until Feb 29th!!!

    Any advice?

  8. P Bello

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Wed Feb 15 2012 18:40:58
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    No, you don't need to be in your bed during treatment. Most pest professionals prefer or require that residents not be in the area of treatment for a number of hours while the work is being conducted.

    Hope this helps ! paul b.

  9. buggerinLA

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    Posted 7 years ago
    Wed Feb 15 2012 19:28:52
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    Well, my treatment was last week and I am still out of town and plan to be out of town until I move. I hope that makes it clearer.

    I am more and more nervous now about moving than I previously had been. I don't know what the hell to do. There is so much conflicting info out there, I am really going crazy.


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