Got Bed Bugs? Bedbugger Forums » Tools/ideas for fighting bed bugs

So... what "cure" are we waiting for?

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  1. blargg

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 7:13:08
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    Ok, I understand a lot of research is being done on bedbugs, but what is the end result we're waiting for?... an effective human-safe pesticide? Isn't that kind of unlikely to happen?
    DE is a slow killer, and I don't see any proof that it works. Heat works, but is expensive, and sometimes fails. Vikane is expensive. Other pesticides I've read about require many treatments, and are not always effective.
    We know chlorpyrifos and propoxur work on bedbugs, but we can't use them indoors.... so do we really expect a pesticide safer than these two products to eventually emerge? As far as pesticide resistance goes, we know DDT almost wiped bedbugs off the US map, but now bedbugs show resistance. If we used multiple chemicals, like Propoxur AND Chlorpyrifos, which are two different classes of pesticides (I think), and went on an all-out blitz on bedbugs, would we likely have success?
    Sorry to ramble; I'm just not sure what everyone is waiting on... and what can I do to help the bedbug cause? Should I mail a congressman or something?

    Thanks all.

  2. Jenn28

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 10:27:48
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    Whatever it is, I hope it's something that will send them to live on another planet cause they sure aren't welcome here!

  3. Dionyseus

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 10:45:14
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    Yes unfortunately bed bugs had started to form a resistance to DDT even before it was banned here in the United States. Today in Africa DDT seems to only irritate bed bugs, makes them angrier and more active.

    Here's an article I found about that:
    http://newenglandbedbugforum.org/archives/1277

  4. so unsettling

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 11:08:12
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    I doubt that the EPA would ever approve anything that is really strong enough to get rid of them. And I agree that none of these other things really works (DE, Phantom, etc) . New generations of bugs are born while their parent-bugs die, and although people can keep the bug population under control, they are never rid of them. People that can vikane single unit dwellings appear to have the greatest success. But hey are never eradicated from apartment buildings except in rare situations--I don't care what anyone says here. They are never gone, and that is one of the best-kept secrets at this website. Have you noticed how many people here have simply disappeared, never telling us the outcome? More than likely, they gave up, went off to self treat, kept their situations under control, or moved, fought another battle somewhere else, etc.

    Stop and think about it. Roaches are seldom eradicated from apartments in the South, or in restaurants everywhere. People just get them treated over and over, and life is bearable. We can accept that outcome with roaches, but not with bedbugs. People have a great investment in getting rid of bedbugs, not just because of what they do, but because of our great dread of spreading them to other people. So we really want to get rid of bedbugs. But where are we getting the idea that we can? There is no other kind of bug that is driven from a domicile and kept away forever, so why do we think we can get rid of these for good? They were around for several millenia and it was only a fluke of history--the invention of DDT--that got rid of them for a while. Except for a few decades in the middle of the 20th century, bed bugs have always been irritating humans. People made efforts to control them but were never free of them. And neither will we be. The last 50 years were the unusual ones in bed bug history--now we are back to the norm, which means bed bugs are in people's beds biting them.

    Lately, I am beginning to realize that these bugs are everywhere. They are probably in at least half the apartment buildings in my home town, perhaps in all of them. They have to be in the public library and the hospitals. We might as well get used to it. Only the Rapture could have ended this nightmare:)

  5. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 12:09:13
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    Hi,

    Respectfully you are looking to fight the wrong fight.

    To deal with bedbugs we have to move the battle forward in the process of an infestation.

    The first battle is public awareness which leads to avoidance thus reducing the level of the problem in society.

    The second battle is early detection. This results in dealing with an infestation before it gets out of control and really starts to spread.

    The last battle or last stand is treatment.

    If you wait for the last battle you will always have to fight not only the bedbugs but the fine work of Mr Charles Darwin. By this I mean regardless of what chemical based products you use all it does is add extra pressure to the evolution of tolerant bedbug populations. These then spread further and further to the point where just like bacterial infections and antibiotics little or nothing will work.

    Sadly I fear the pest industry will need to learn this the same that the medical community did, i.e. the hard way.

    Please stop looking for chemical solutions when what is actually needed is a more intelligent approach to the whole issue.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    If you have found this information helpful please consider leaving feedback on social media via google+ or FaceBook or by like/loving the images.

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC (legal requirements) 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 products.
  6. Canuck

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 12:23:56
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    blargg,
    I whole heartedly agree with David/bed-bugscouk. Yes, the pest has been bugging man throughout history. The difference now is the internet. We now have the ability to provide quality information quickly to many.
    There are two important steps: Step 1. Quality education in cojunction with Step 2. Quality early detection; and when necessary, Step 3. remedial action (chemical, heat, etc.) that is relative to the degree of infestation.
    I am reminded of the very first posts I came across on this web site - 'spread the word, not the bed bug'.
    Sheree
    (disclaimer I am associated with a canine detection service)

    Sheree Swindle / certified K9-assisted bed bug inspector
  7. so unsettling

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 12:45:27
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    Then stop telling us to get a good PCO, maybe not you guys but whoever it is at this website that says to do just that. They don't do a damn thing but spray and dust a little for 20 minutes.

    All due respect, but the internet is one of the reasons they are spreading all over the world.

    I know that is nice to think that education and simple logic can change things. Step 1, 2, 3, etc. It sounds good, but it doesn't work out that way. This is like getting cancer. Only extreme actions, at great cost and suffering, and radical life changes, will even begin to take care of it. And even then, the damn bugs won't be gone, just controlled.

    Please give us all a break and stop making it sound like it's a matter of simple logic and sound, intelligent action.

  8. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 12:52:51
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    so unsettling - 4 minutes ago  » 
    I know that is nice to think that education and simple logic can change things. Step 1, 2, 3, etc. It sounds good, but it doesn't work out that way. This is like getting cancer. Only extreme actions, at great cost and suffering, and radical life changes, will even begin to take care of it. And even then, the damn bugs won't be gone, just controlled.

    This is in essence how the issue was resolved in the 1940's when as many as one third of all homes were infected and the issue started to be brought under control. If we don't learn the lessons of history we are doomed to repeat them.

    I am not in fact over simplifying the issue, I am calling upon 9 years of experience and over 20,000 cleared cases to give you the best advice I can.

    The simple truth is that looking for a magic bullet to a complex social issue is a fools errand.

    David

  9. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 13:23:41
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    But hey are never eradicated from apartment buildings except in rare situations--I don't care what anyone says here. They are never gone, and that is one of the best-kept secrets at this website. Have you noticed how many people here have simply disappeared, never telling us the outcome?

    I live in a four plex. I had a bed bug infestation for at least six weeks and possibly several months before I discovered it.

    I had a PCO treat, and I've been bed bug free for over three years.

    I've also been around long enough to see plenty of people who had bed bugs who used chemical treatment--sometimes in single family houses and other times in apartment buildings--who've won their battles with bed bugs.

    Multi-unit buildings can be more complicated simply because you've got more people to get on board. I think it's especially tricky in large multi-unit buildings where people don't know each other. I suspect part of the reason that my apartment was treated successfully is that we're all long term tenants who knew each other for years before the bed bug infestation came up. It's also a smaller building, so with those two factors it was a lot easier to get all of my neighbors fully on board with inspection before and after treatment of my unit.

    However, that last point is important. We've all been educated in the process. I know that my educating friends of mine who also travel a lot has prevented at least one infestation (or at least a longer term exposure.)

    So, yes, "education and simple logic" alone won't win the bed bug battle. But the battle against bed bugs won't be won without including education in the integrated approach to dealing with bed bugs.

  10. so unsettling

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 13:56:49
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    plenty of people who had bed bugs who used chemical treatment--sometimes in single family houses and other times in apartment buildings--who've won their battles with bed bugs.

    How do you know this? I read this site backwards and forwards and find little real evidence that anyone has really won anything. The posters just go away.

    Buggy you were one of the people I was thinking of, the vikane success. And people "getting onboard." I don't know what that is supposed to mean. I live in an apartment in a medium size city. The landlord isn't going to put out the money for multiple, simultaneous treatments. This is typical. In many cases, whole buildings need to be done. That can cost upwards to $50,000 or more. It just isn't happening. These are the realities, not the ideal situations that the experts and successful people like you are describing. It just isn't happening for the rest of us. And there is no point in moving, as too many other buildings are in the same situation. There are an enormous number of people in the United States who are simply learning to live with these damn bugs because there is nothing else they can do. Once they are in a place, they are in, and it doesn't matter if we sterilize ourselves completely every time we return from other possible infested places (which is everyplace.) They are still in our homes, because that is where they live. This is the reality.

  11. spideyjg

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 14:15:04
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    How do you know this? I read this site backwards and forwards and find little real evidence that anyone has really won anything. The posters just go away.

    Apartment, check
    Lotsa bugs, check
    Called qualified PCO, check
    Chemical treatments supplemented by chamber vikane and dusting, check
    Educated occupants, check
    bugs gone, check
    IPM instituted, check
    Years later, still no bugs

    Jim

  12. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 14:20:14
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    Jim,

    Thanks, I could not get the phrase "when your exsanguinated no-one can hear you scream and you cant type" out of my head.

    Thankfully it is now replaced with your succinct logic.

    David

  13. so unsettling

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 14:24:10
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    Scheeezzzhh. Why do I bother to come here. Forget it. Carry on.

  14. rAVENSFAN99

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 14:36:34
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    What exactly are you looking for? Why do you assume that the people who "disappeared" left because they were frustrated and not because they had dealt successfully with their problems?

    I admit, I am starting to feel hopeless in my situation, but I also know that several people have beaten the bugs--several who have posted in this very forum thread, in fact.

    Should science just stop because they're faced with a formidable opponent? Penicillin was a "fluke," and from that grew (literally) numerous other antibiotics. And as we build tolerances to those, new ones are created.

    Do I think BBs are a huge, growing problem that will continue to get worse before it gets better? Yes. But I don't think the sky is falling just yet.

  15. Rosae

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 15:00:44
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    It will stop when there is a good detection tool. Some $100 device, that you can buy or rent if you suspect an infestation.

    If you know exactly where they are you can easily get rid of them, with heath or alcohol. Maybe there will even be a robot who does the killing work for you.

    It's all about detection.

  16. copperblade

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 15:31:47
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    I'm waiting for a pill that I can take that will make my blood less tasty or poisonous. Maybe quinine would do the trick. Or maybe if I just drink enough alcohol... hmmm gin and tonic.

  17. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 15:31:57
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    Buggy you were one of the people I was thinking of, the vikane success.

    I didn't have Vikane treatment as any part of my treatment plan. My apartment was not tented, and my things were not chamber treated with Vikane.

    I do realize that since my landlord is a small property owner <i>who lives on site</i> I am not in the situation that many people in larger multi-unit buildings are in. The bed bugs were maybe 20 feet from where my landlords sleep, so they had a powerful motive to do the right thing.

    My awareness of that is why I'd like to see more research into chemicals that are more effective on bed bugs.

    However, actual R & D timelines for most anything are in the tens of years. In the meantime, education is a pretty powerful tool. I suspect I'm using a pretty broad definition of education, however. Mine includes educating law makers who put better laws on the books. It also includes educating more PCOs; well-educated PCOs can be very successful even without one shot options like Vikane or heat.

    Is there a problem in that there aren't enough of those PCOs around? Yes.

    Is there a problem in that too many municipalities have laws that are weak and don't protect tenants who are at the mercy of unscrupulous landlords? Yes.

    But for me, the answer to that is partly about education. Not educating victims who are often in positions with very little power to do anything about this, but educating lots of different groups because it really does take a village.

    I know there are people who think that the problem is hopeless--who give up and decide to live with the bugs, and frankly, in a lot of situations, there are not nearly enough resources to help those folks.

    But those are the cases that most make me think that education is important--not to educate the people who are suffering because they've got cheapskate landlords who are hiring spray and pray types. But because if we don't educate lawmakers and voters who don't have problems who put pressure on lawmakers to get the laws about bed bugs right, even a good pesticide that targets bed bugs and their eggs effectively in one treatment isn't going to solve the problem.

  18. Totally Bugging

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 16:20:29
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    This post is so depressing. I am having my second treatment tomorrow,k and though the bites have slowed down and we arent getting as many, i'm so afraid that this wont be the last of them and i will never be able to use my bureaus and put my towels away and unpack my books and things. I just bought this beautiful house, and even though the people i bought it from are paying for the extermination, i cant live in my new home. I can;t have people over to visit, i cant put away blankets, i can;t hang my brand new curtains... I have washed, dried and sealed everything in large bags, adn I'm just so sad that this is it and they will never go away..how can that be? There must be something that can be done?? How frigging depressing this whole thing is.

  19. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 19:24:25
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    Totally Bugging - 2 hours ago  » 
    This post is so depressing. I am having my second treatment tomorrow,k and though the bites have slowed down and we arent getting as many, i'm so afraid that this wont be the last of them and i will never be able to use my bureaus and put my towels away and unpack my books and things. I just bought this beautiful house, and even though the people i bought it from are paying for the extermination, i cant live in my new home. I can;t have people over to visit, i cant put away blankets, i can;t hang my brand new curtains... I have washed, dried and sealed everything in large bags, adn I'm just so sad that this is it and they will never go away..how can that be? There must be something that can be done?? How frigging depressing this whole thing is.

    It is completely normal to need more than one treatment if your method is some combination of one or more of these: steam/spray/dust. Having had one treatment, there is absolutely no reason, in my opinion, for you to be despairing about how your problem will never go away.

    There are some people in this situation but they are unusual cases -- tend to be folks in a building with lots of bed bugs, where the problem is completely mismanaged. Or people who can't afford treatment. These are heartbreaking situations, absolutely, and people in those situations need more help.

    However, I think it is unnecessarily alarmist and inaccurate to paint the hopeless picture so unsettling is doing above.

    I firmly believe that most people who come to this site get rid of their bed bugs, in most cases using these same methods, even though most of them do not come back to write a "success story" post.

    I hear all the time from people who have done just that. I can think of many regular forum users who I know for a fact just simply never wrote that final "success" post. Although I often encourage them to come back when they're ready to share an update, in most cases, it seems that many people want to wait a while to be "sure" they don't have bed bugs. Then after they leave the site and wait a while, they forget.

    (Compare this with folks who move or use Vikane or thermal-- they often feel clear to declare "success" within a week or two, and so they don't forget to give us the updates. I suspect that may be why it seems the success stories have many more stories of those methods, rather than traditional sprays/dusts, even though it appears to me that people get rid of bed bugs by these methods all the time.)

    In fact, when people have had persistent cases which go on and on, or which recur, we have heard from them. In my experience, people in that situation tend to keep stopping in to share ideas and hear about progress in various areas like legislation or products, or just to commiserate.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  20. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 19:33:52
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    And so unsettling, I know you have been on the site awhile, but I can't recall all the details in your case.

    I do want to say this: if you are one of those in a building where treatment is mismanaged, my heart does go out to you. I don't agree that most cases are hopeless. For those that are, I have to believe that organizing to fight the problem is the way.

  21. rAVENSFAN99

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 20:23:53
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    NOBUGS, you are a beacon of hope and a voice of reason, where hope and reason seem to have left the building for so many of us. I'm very grateful for your site and for everyone who is able to offer sound advice.

  22. rAVENSFAN99

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Jul 6 2011 20:24:30
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    rAVENSFAN99 - 14 seconds ago  » 
    NOBUGS, you are a beacon of hope and a voice of reason, where hope and reason seem to have left the building for so many of us. I'm very grateful for your site and for everyone who is able to offer sound advice.

    I just took a Klonopin, so I apologize if that sounded kind of Kumbaya.

  23. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Thu Jul 7 2011 9:02:17
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    Thanks, Ravensfan, Kumbaya or not, I really appreciate that.

  24. Jenn28

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Thu Jul 7 2011 12:17:47
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    unsettling,

    I am bed bug free for over a year now and I'm still here. I just choose to hang around that's all. Others do not. I have two success stories for you. I got rid of bed bugs in my apartment without spreading them to the neighbors (this was confirmed) and the company I work for manages a 16 unit apartment building that was infested 3 years ago. The same PCO I used was the one we hired and they got rid of the bugs in 2 - 3 treatments (chemical) and they have been bedbug free ever since I have to agree with some posts on this topic that education is one of the most important things. We DO NOT have to live like this. We do however have to be very careful as bed bugs are popping up everywhere these days. I'm curious, do you take the opinion that you do because you are still infested all these months later and can't seem to get rid of them? Everyone has the right to their own opinion and I'm not knocking you for it but when you say (in other words) that we just have to learn to live like this because they are really never gone, I have to disagree because I'm not in that boat. Just sayin

  25. so unsettling

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Thu Jul 7 2011 14:26:00
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    Organizing to fight the problem, hey Nobugs?? I really think if I did that, I would lose my job and my home tomorrow. I certainly have thought of going public with my disgust for this city and state. But we live in a blame-oriented, scarlet letter society. Part of the educational process is getting people to see that this is a societal problem. There is too much at stake. I have already resigned myself to a life without friends, family, no new material objects and a lot of general discomfort. Fortunately I am older anyway, there probably isn't that much time left, and I have many happy memories. But life, as I once lived it, is simply over. Now, it is just carrying on, from one day to the next. Endless hard work, with the goal of avoiding spread. And I suspect there are thousands of people in the same situation.

    But I hope that you are right, and that most of our departed posted found a solution. I do not mean to discourage people. I answered the original poster with one point of view. Hopefully, this doesn't have to be the way many feel. But some will, and I have just given voice to one kind of sentiment.

  26. Nobugsonme

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    so unsettling - 4 hours ago  » 
    Organizing to fight the problem, hey Nobugs?? I really think if I did that, I would lose my job and my home tomorrow. I certainly have thought of going public with my disgust for this city and state.

    Others have done so. In infested buildings, people have teamed with neighbors to speak to their landlords, and have sometimes gotten help that way. Others have taken their problem to the city or local media, which can also bear fruit. Safety in numbers works in some cases.

    I recognize that some people are not in a position to organize. I am sorry that you're in that situation, so unsettling.

  27. thecitymusthelp

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    Thu Jul 7 2011 20:14:02
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    I do not see how anyone can think that a PCO treatment is the answer to our prayers. It is not. You can PCO the heck out of a multi-unit building to make it 100% bedbug free.....I bet you it would take less than a week for them to be reintroduced into the building. How? bring a book home from the library, sit in a taxi cab, have a play date, sleepover, bring home drycleaning or you freshly cleaned clothes that are sitting waiting for you at the laudry mat. I have seen the people next door from me who have a major active infestation take all of their clothes, blankets etc. to the laundry mat. This is putting everyone else who goes there at risk for getting them too. Think about your own situation, how did you get them. Were you sitting in a homless shelter? Probably not, they are everywhere. They were brought into your house by you, your family or the tenant in your building. They only way to deal with this is to keep them at bay until they release DDT again. Go to WHO.org and EPA.org and type in DDT bedbugs, maybe I am not reading this correct but you can buy DDT from their website?????

    For Gods sake we do not live in a 3rd world country that we should be living in these kinds of conditions. This is ridiculous and disgraceful that we do not have DDT or something like it to wipe out these bugs. We keep passing them back and forth and they will never go away. I am sorry, this is the truth and no PCO treatment will prevent you from getting them again. We though we free after 1.5yrs......then it happened again.....how, why, we are so careful.

    For now we use steri-fab, DE and Hot Shots bedbug and flea spray, steamer, double face tape, rip apart my sheets every morning and constantly look at everything. Yes to the point of OCD.

  28. flippingoutalittle

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 4:33:52
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    Belated, but my two cents:
    "Have you noticed how many people here have simply disappeared, never telling us the outcome? "

    I almost think that's an argument for people successfully treating it. We like to complain, as humans. This forum gives us a place to complain AND get good information from people who are more experienced then us and let us know more. It stands to reason that some people are going to come here to either complain, get good information, or do both, and then not come back. If they're in the first group, the complainers, their lack of presence might indicate that there's no longer anything to complain about.

    Partially i'm speaking from experience- I was active here weeks ago when I was full of piss, vinegar, and questions. I was inactive for awhile (I was waiting to see the results of my treatments), and now I'm back with more of the same. I thikn if the problem was fixed by now, it might be 50-50... I might come back and say, hey guys, I'm done! But I might not, out of forgetfulness.

    Not implying it's bad to complain, either. This forum is awesome and I'm so glad it's here. I can't begin to express how helpful it's been for me to have somewhere to go "HOLY CRAP THIS SUCKS AND I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO," and have 10 people answer me going, "yeah man, we know, we've lived it. Here's what we did, and here's what you can do."

    "have seen the people next door from me who have a major active infestation take all of their clothes, blankets etc. to the laundry mat. This is putting everyone else who goes there at risk for getting them too."

    This is actually something most PCO's ask you to do- at least from the research I've done. We were asked to do it, at the beginnings of our treatments. It's actually not that bad if you TELL your laundromat that it might be infested. Laundromat dryers get hotter then some home dryers, and they have access to some more hard-core things they can do.. they just need to know that things are infested so that they don't mix them up with the non-infested clothing and spread it that way.

  29. so unsettling

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 14:29:23
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    My God, I have never been so quoted before as in this thread. I have said much more intelligent things along the way, and no one noticed.

    Suggestion--wondering if it is possible to keep statistics here. Some kind of form available, that people could fill in so that we might know more about the outcome. Some visitors might fill it out even if they don't intend to spend a lot of time at the site--because they got bed bug free!! Everyone wants to share good news, if there is any.

    After all, we really are a big clinical trial.

  30. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 15:52:06
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    Even if we had the resources to have someone track down everyone who posted to the site, the stats would be deeply unreliable.

    Websites postings are loaded with sample selection bias problems. People who take the time to post to a website are are sub-sample of the general population that comes with inherent biases.

    In addition, people here often create pseudonyms (for obvious reasons). Getting reliable data from online populations who are using pseuds is a major research challenge.

    I understand and applaud the impulse to want to track the stats; I think having more stats would give us a more realistic picture instead of skewing the results toward self-reporting which carries an inherent bias.

    But that said, actually getting reliable data in this situation is a lot harder than it first appears.

    This is, incidentally, the basic problem with online evaluations of faculty like ratemyprofessor.com as opposed to the kinds of evaluations done in college classrooms. At a website that asks people to volunteer to post, you get a decided sample selection bias; the students who really, really like and the students who really, really hate a prof take the time to post, but the students who just sort of feel eh don't come back. Obviously, you're going to run into a similar phenomenon on a site like this.

    In addition, while many people use pseuds that they endow with very strong identities within small communities, when you start talking about quantitative research of online communities (Which is what the stats you're asking for would look like), it gets really tricky.

    Usually such research is carried out by university faculty and/or research firms. There are ethical issues that have to be examined in those cases. Given the stigma associated with bed bugs and the very real consequences, any study done through a university would likely be subject to Internal Review Board approval needed for human subjects research; I believe most private research firms have similar requirements although when I worked for one, I was low enough in the hierarchy that I know nothing about it. It's very hard to get reliable data from online communities with pseuds because of the problems with sock puppets (people who create multiple online identities that are different from their own.)

    This, incidentally, is similar to the reasons that polls can be so wrong about election results. The preferred methodology for polling is to take a random cross section of society. Often that's done by randomly selecting phone numbers and calling those folks in the case of political polls. However, as more people choose not to have a landline, but the traditional research methods continue to exclude cell phones in the pool, there was a lot of talk about how that was skewing the sample in the run up to the 2004 and 2008 elections.

    I don't say this to discourage us from thinking about ways to get better data, but I do think people should be aware of how much more difficult it is to get good data than I think most of us think it is. I don't work in a field these days where I'm expected to do that kind of research, and I've never had formal graduate level training in it, but I know a lot of people who have, and I was astounded at how much more complicated it is than I would have imagined.

    In that sense, we're not a big clinical trial. There's no IRB. There's no double blind. There's no randomization to a control vs. a treatment group. We're not subject to the same kinds of methodologically sound set up that clinical trials must undergo before they're approved, and as a result, any data gleaned won't be nearly as reliable--and won't be the sort of stuff policy makers would base decisions on.

  31. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 16:38:23
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    Erm, I think my non-social sciences/non-sciences self is showing.

    That should read Institutional Review Board, not Internal.

    (Is it my fault everyone just calls it the IRB?)

  32. jrbtnyc

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 18:15:27
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    buggy you were still within 60 minutes, you could have simply edited it to fix it

  33. jrbtnyc

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 18:21:33
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    > So... what "cure" are we waiting for?

    blargg - 2 days ago  » 
    ...what is the end result we're waiting for?...

    Give it another...couple of weeks or so.

  34. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 8 2011 18:29:33
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    I would love to ask users who have gotten rid of bed bugs to link in their profile to their actual success story post. (This makes a link from your username to your story.)

    You can usually find this by looking at your profile in the list of threads you started. Even only a few do this, it might be quite encouraging help new bites get to know oldtimers better.

  35. kirads09

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sun Jul 10 2011 14:17:20
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    First I so appreciate David's wisdom and experience.
    I am thankful for the good information on this site.

    so unsettling - 4 days ago  » 
    Only extreme actions, at great cost and suffering, and radical life changes, will even begin to take care of it. And even then, the damn bugs won't be gone, just controlled

    You know, I think that is what scares me the most. I don't think our society - in the USA especially - is ready or willing to make those "radical" life changes necessary. Perhaps we won't be until/unless bb's are proven to be vectors of disease. Or as I have said before some high government official has to personally deal with an infestation, realizes what is at stake and pushes for action.

    I don't know about what (if anything) is going on in the research or pest control world toward global eradication. Or if hoping and praying (literally, as I am) for there to be a breakthrough to that end is even realistic.

    I now believe some level of "control" may be the best we can hope for at this present time. Not comforting!

  36. copperblade

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sun Jul 10 2011 14:30:06
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    I believe the first step in fighting bed bugs is really preventing the spread. It's like going to work when you're sick: they show the most virulent (i.e. spreadable) diseases are the ones that cause the least serious symptoms. This is because if you're symptoms are bad enough, you'll be at home instead of spreading it.

    Having bed bugs should be like having any other contagious parasite.

  37. Zilver

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sun Jul 10 2011 14:34:41
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    Actually I think just a medicine that effectively eases, or totally takes away the bitereactions, would help A LOT!

    Then people wouldn´t be so scared getting them and feel so bad having them I think. Then it should sure ease the social stigma a lot, right?

  38. blargg

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sun Jul 10 2011 15:13:38
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    Zilver - 37 minutes ago  » 
    Actually I think just a medicine that effectively eases, or totally takes away the bitereactions, would help A LOT!
    Then people wouldn´t be so scared getting them and feel so bad having them I think. Then it should sure ease the social stigma a lot, right?

    Hmmm, maybe a little. Just the thought of small, quickly reproducing, blood-sucking bugs in my house/bed would bug the poop out of me, bite marks or not...

  39. jrbtnyc

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sun Jul 10 2011 15:21:46
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    blargg - 1 minute ago  » 

    Zilver - 37 minutes ago  » 
    Actually I think just a medicine that effectively eases, or totally takes away the bitereactions, would help A LOT!
    Then people wouldn´t be so scared getting them and feel so bad having them I think. Then it should sure ease the social stigma a lot, right?

    Hmmm, maybe a little. Just the thought of small, quickly reproducing, blood-sucking bugs in my house/bed would bug the poop out of me, bite marks or not...

    If people didn't react and therefore could essentially ignore them if they chose to, before very many months those people would start growing rather thin...the numbers of bugs would become like Alfred Hitchcock's "Birds", except crunchy/squishy underfoot as you would walk through the house and niagaras of bugs on beds, couches, furniture and in blankets, curtains, clothes et al. and wall surfing plus a noticeable aroma of hemoglobin poop...um, I don't think it's something we really want to wish for.

  40. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sun Jul 10 2011 15:56:04
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    buggy you were still within 60 minutes, you could have simply edited it to fix it

    I do know how to edit posts; I chose not to edit it but to point out my error.

    I've spent a lot of time online prior to bed bugs in other contexts, and in those online communities, other than typos, it's considered very bad form to edit posts you've made in public. I'll correct punctuation or spelling if it's a typo, but this was a whole word, so I thought it would be bad form to correct it.

    So thanks for pointing that out, but there's a reason I did it that way.


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