Expert shares five tips to prevent bed bug infestation in your home

Expert shares five tips to prevent bed bug infestation in your home
Travel vlogger documents finding bed bugs in Paris AirBnB
Travel vlogger documents finding bed bugs in Paris AirBnB

Bed bugs in the UK have become a growing concern since the outbreak in Paris, with Google searches for 'bed bugs in the UK' spiking by a staggering 125 per cent in recent weeks.

The insects are known for easily latching onto suitcases, clothing and furnishing, meaning the spread can happen quite frequently and quickly.

Bed bugs are oval-shaped and grow to around 3/16th of an inch in length. Before they bite, they are brown and flat. But, when they feed, they become more swollen and red in colour.

London-based property experts Essential Living have now weighed in with five invaluable tips to prevent an infestation in your home.


Take precautions when you arrive home after travelling

One of the worst things you could do following a trip abroad is to bring bed bugs back home with you. There are a few easy ways you can prevent this from happening, such as not putting your luggage directly on your bed when you unpack or at least vacuuming the outside of your suitcase first before doing so.

Also, keep the clothes you travelled with separate, washing them in hot water immediately.

Clean and dry your soft furnishings on a high-temperature

The small insects often live on furniture or bedding and are usually most active at night, typically nibbling you as you sleep.

For this reason, regularly wash and tumble dry your bed sheets, blankets, mattress protector and any clothing that touches the floor. Doing this will help to kill off any bugs and eggs they’ve most likely laid – anywhere from 40-50 degrees will be most effective.

Bed bugs and their eggs can hide in wash baskets too so remember to clean this when you do the laundry.

Clear out clutter

There’s no time like the present to sort through and throw away any old books or magazines you no longer read, or clothes that are typically thrown under your sofa or bed - this kind of clutter will create another hiding spot for bed bugs.

Regularly clean your mattress

A study by And So To Bed found that a quarter of Brits never clean their mattress. While it’s no easy task, it still needs to be done and failing to do this - or ever replacing it - creates a breeding ground for bacteria and dust mites, as well as a very comfortable home for bed bugs.

If you are someone that uses a mattress protector, regularly flips or rotates their mattress and invests in professional cleaning, there is the chance that your mattress will last 20 years without a trace of bed bugs so practising good housekeeping will help.

Vacuum often

Regularly hoovering your living room and bedroom - even furniture like sofas and beds - is an important habit anyway for hygiene purposes but it will also keep on top of any bed bug presence.

If while hoovering, you spot signs of bed bugs make sure to also give your hoover a thorough clean too.

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