Thursday, August 19, 2010

Bedbugs Aren't Just in Beds Anymore

Update:  One solution for thwarting bedbugs while on the road is to use a light weight sleep sack.  With a sleep sack you don't come into contact with the hotel's bedding and bedbugs can't come into contact with you.  

When the New York City Soho store, Epic Hollister, closed for ten days in July because of a bed bug infestation, the world changed.  What? I could get bedbugs just from shopping?

I was listening to a conversation about bedbugs on the Diane Rehm Show on NPR about bedbugs today and also learned that bedbugs are being found in offices and movie theaters, too.

I guess that's the final straw: I'm going to live my entire life inside of Facebook and never go out again. 

Why are bedbugs spreading beyond homes and hotels? Nobody knows for sure, but it may have to do with the classic predator-prey relationship: The size of the prey's population --humans-- is growing, so the size of the predator population, that lives off of the blood of humans, is also growing.  Bedbugs can easily hitchhike from person to place.

Thwarting and dealing with bedbugs isn't easy.  But having bedbugs isn't fun.  So, what to do? Other than scream, that is.  There are some treatments that you can deploy to get rid of bedbugs: Some of these involve heating your home or apartment to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, a temperature at which neither bedbugs nor wax figurines can survive. 

Before you travel, take a look at the Bedbug Registry, a database of hotels that have, um, problems.

And remember, if you get bedbugs, you're allowed to cry no matter how tough or unemotional you are otherwise.


  1. Its so true, bed bugs are back - with a vengeance, right here in DC! It'll make your skin crawl to learn how bad the problem is. I now check for bugs every time I stay in a hotel, anywhere, every time.

  2. I disagree about doing it yourself. I had them and they are horrible. I consulted an extermination company and they wanted $400+. Phooey on that.

    A friend told me about Diatect, she gave me some and it's natural, it's a powder that you dust, and it kills them w/in 48 hours. You keep applying it every 4-6 weeks for about a year, and then they will all die. (BB's can hibernate for 2 or so years). This stuff is much more safer than pesticides. It apparently is made from plants (some sort of flower).

    I got a bottle called Results Indoor Insect Killer from TruHardware, made by Diatect. Works great. Haven't been bit since.

  3. Very very interesting post.The life in Washington DC is very very funny but the bedbugs.........Its so accurate, bed bugs are back - with a retribution, right here in DC! It'll make your skin move slowly to be taught how bad the dilemma is. I now check for bugs every time I stay in a hotel, anywhere, consistently.