Got Bed Bugs? Bedbugger Forums » Reader questions (do not fit into other categories)

To treat or not to treat?

(7 posts)
  1. buggy_eastharlem

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Feb 13 2009 13:46:23
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    Here's the deal:

    A few months ago I noticed a bug crawling on my bed. I flipped out a little, killed it and threw it away. This being NYC I was worried that it might have been a bed bug, but I had no bites so I decided to be optimistic and ignore it.

    Since then I've seen bugs on four occasions. One day I woke up with three little bites (that did not itch) on my wrist, one on my finger, and one on my shin. None itched. I have not had any bites since. I tried to catch bug #2 but dropped it and then it was lost. I did manage to catch bug #3 and mailed it off to the Harvard Entomology lab for identification. Bug #4 appears to be a baby cockroach (yep, we have roaches too)and not a bed bug. What it was doing in my bed I have no idea. Gross, gross, gross. Incidentally, our apartment is actually very neat and clean.

    Today the Harvard lab emailed me to confirm that yes, in fact, I had found a bed bug. Crap. So now here is the question: What do we do? I don't have bites so the bugs don't bother me per-se. My housemates have no bites and have not noticed bugs anywhere. I am fairly certain that the bugs came from a house-guest who slept on an infested sofa the night before staying over at our place. I was not there the night he slept over (which is why he was in my bed) or I would have taken one look at his bitten-to-death arms and kicked him to the curb. He claims he didn't know what bedbugs were and so I "can't" be angry at him for infesting out place. Mmhm....

    Anyhow, since I don't have bites and since no one else has bites my housemates do not want to pay for treatment. We have a 4br apartment, plus living room, so it'd be very expensive to treat the place. We're thinking of just getting mattress encasement things, vacuuming the hell out of the apartment, washing everything and calling it a day. So ... do we hire a pesticide guy and treat the place or not?

    What do you all think?

  2. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Feb 13 2009 13:55:27
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    I think you should get a professional pest controller into your place to inspect and, if bed bugs are found, totreat.

    Here's why.

    First, you're not responding to bites <i>right now</i>. It is true that a lot of people don't respond to bites. However, for some people, those reactions change over time. While you don't respond right now, you might in the future.

    Secondly, you sound kind of miffed at the friend who might have infested your place. Even if the bugs don't bother you, they are very easy to spread, and if you don't get rid of them, you could be responsible for infesting other people. Whether your friend who stayed over was or wasn't aware of them or not, you are. And you came here to ask questions. That suggests to me that you know that they are a bigger deal than you might think.

    Now that you're here, we can all tell you: failure to effectively treat bed bugs and take the precautions outlined in the FAQs here can easily result in you spreading the bugs to others. And once an infestation gets entrenched, it's a lot harder and more costly to get rid of. The longer you wait, the harder it it to get rid of and the greater the chance that you'll have spread them to others in the meantime.

    When you look to hire a good PCO, read the FAQS on picking a good one in the first place.

    Bed bugs, contrary to their reputation, have almost nothing to do with cleanliness. After all, many bed bugs set up a happy home in hotels, and not just run down, dirty flea bag ones. They are a pest of exposure. If you get exposed, you can get bed bugs.

    Since up to 60 to 70% of people don't respond to the bites, you can't use your lack of bites as proof that you don't really have them.

    Get a pro in to inspect--one who knows what to look for. That will tell you how many rooms are or are not infested, and then you'll have a better idea of the cost to treat.

  3. spideyjg

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Feb 13 2009 14:00:16
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    You have BBs, you treat.

    They will not go away on their own and they will grow in population and end up infesting your neighbors and friends who come over.

    See the vids from bedbugdude on youtube as to what your apartment can end up like. One video is in this thread and then go to youtube and see his other vids for really bad pics.

    http://bedbugger.com/forum/topic/clarification-on-black-specks

    Go see this and decide if you want your apartment to get like this.....

    [+] Embed the videoGet the Video Player

  4. buggy_eastharlem

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Feb 13 2009 14:13:39
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    I know that they are a big deal, trust me. I know.

    I have friends who've suffered through this, and I live in NYC so I hear about people and their bed bug battles all the time.

    That said, my housemates seem none to keen on helping foot the bill and since we're all poor public servants I was wondering if we might be able to find an "easier" way out of this since it doesn't seem to be all that bad at the moment.

    Still, we're having a house-meeting tonight so we'll talk about it.

  5. buggy_eastharlem

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Feb 13 2009 15:21:31
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    So if we're going to treat then who should we go with?

    I got an insanely expensive quote from Stern Environmental Group (the cryonite people)
    I also contacted Ceasar from Freedom Pest control and I have PMed Killer Queen.

    Who do you all recommend? I just want to deal with this and have it be over.

    One more question: My boyfriend and I stay over at each others' places fairly frequently. He's never had bites either (thankfully) but what do we do now? I don't want him to stay at my place, but it wouldn't be safe for me to stay at his until they're gone, right? Even though a lot of the damage has probably already been done (as the bugs were probably spread to my place a few months ago) I'd like to mitigate the damage.

  6. MyWorstFear

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Feb 13 2009 16:04:04
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    If the bugs were spread to your place a few months ago, chances are you've got a bigger-than-you-think infestation. Your boyfriend's place should be checked out as well since these are so easy to spread. You're in NYC...if you're renting, your landlord is, I believe responsible for paying to get rid of them. Apartments surrounding yours should also be checked since if just your place is treated, the bugs will go next door, and then come back to re-infest you down the road.

  7. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Sat Feb 14 2009 2:51:51
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    You can click the NYC PCOs tag at top to see reviews of NYC PCOs in general and specifically comments from other forum users about Stern, Killer Queen, and Cesar (I added those tags, so you can click on them).

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

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