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Tackling a low-level infestation before it grows

(3 posts)
  1. bugaboo_wrath

    Joined: Jul '14
    Posts: 1


    Posted 5 years ago
    Thu Jul 31 2014 9:47:05

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    Well, just my luck. I lived 10 years in NYC and never had any bedbug issues. Then we move to Cape Cod (ie, the furthest out you can get into the Atlantic Ocean while still being in the continental US) and 9 months later.... WTF.

    It started just as June/July rolled around. I woke up and saw a couple welts on my arm. I assumed I had just gotten caught by some mosquitos or no-see-ums when I was outside. But as more bites popped up, I acknowledged a couple troubling truths. 1) I wasn't going outside nearly enough to justify so many bites; 2) I was definitely waking up with new bite marks; 3) the bites were in a line.

    I admit I went through denial: We had just moved to this new apartment from NYC. What was my landlord going to think of us? But after a couple days' of research, I knew I had to buckle down and search. With a flashlight and a pair of tweezers, I systematically searched the creases of the mattress, and sure enough, there was a bedbug wedged in there.

    I caught the bastard (he didn't move too fast, maybe bcs it was daytime) and put him in a glass in the freezer to kill him without messing up his body.

    The next day, my boyfriend called Pure Heat, which is a thermal convection company on Cape that has had pretty good reviews (quick confirmation that I have absolutely no affiliation with this company). They did a free assessment and actually found no evidence of bedbugs! (They did confirm that it was a bedbug that I had caught). The guy said that it was likely one of us picked the bastard up at work (I'm at a nursing home and my boyfriend works at a summer camp) and it might have been the only one. The guy recommended we wait a week and see if we are getting more bites before we shell out the $1400 it would cost to treat the apt.

    That was all yesterday. This morning I woke up with two bites, about two inches apart on my hip. They look a little different from the ones on my arm, but that just has me convinced that I'm getting bitten by an instar rather than an adult (the one I caught looked like an adult to me).

    But I'm hopeful that these are just delayed reactions to previous bites, and not actually new bites from last night. Is that possible??

    I'm kind of thinking about getting a BB sniffing dog, but I hear they're expensive. If the dog confirms we still have live bedbugs, then that'll be two major costs. So then I'm sort of thinking let's just do the heat treatment for peace of mind. But that's still a lot of money, especially when the guy who stands to make a profit even said it might not be worth it. I understand people lose their minds when it comes to bedbugs and I want to make sure I'm not making panicked decisions.

    SO. Does anyone have experience with a low-level (possibly single-digit) infestation? Were you able to nip it in the bud with obsessive cleaning? Did you bother with a dog? How much was it?

    Sorry to have written so much. Obviously one's first encounter with BBs is mega traumatizing, so part of this post was just me needing to rant. God knows I feel like I can't talk to any of my friends or family about it!

    PS: I have photos of all my bites and of the bug itself if anyone thinks it would be useful.

  2. bed-bugscouk

    Joined: Apr '07
    Posts: 18,076


    Posted 5 years ago
    Thu Jul 31 2014 10:50:25

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    For low level infestation the processes and protocols that I call TbyPMR will work.

    There is a 27 page PDF linked on the forum that will take you through the process.

    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
  3. BedBugsCharlotte

    Joined: Jul '14
    Posts: 24


    Posted 5 years ago
    Thu Jul 31 2014 12:53:29

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    I am sorry to hear you are going through this. I am not an expert but I did "clean obsessively". I travel to a lot to NYC and out of the country and I heard heavy travel and being heavily traveled, like a business, put you at a higher risk. I have box spring and mattress encasements that specify for bed beg prevention. I steamed and checked before I encased. I had a maintenance crew apply food grade DE in safe areas with a make up brush and blow it into the walls. My head maintenance man has done pest control before. Good luck. I still don't know if I am battling bed bugs.

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