Following another summer of unprecedented heatwaves, bed bugs are on the rise in the UK. Find out why they’re spreading and what you can do about it.
Why are they rising in number?
Bed bugs thrive in temperatures of around 20 – 28 degrees celsius, meaning longer summers at higher temperatures in the UK are creating a welcoming environment for these increasingly common pests. Furthermore, as trends see a rise in both UK and overseas travel, more people are coming into contact with bed bugs in hostels, hotels and B&Bs.
How do they spread?
Part of what makes bed bugs so hard to get rid of is their ability to spread, often becoming unwelcome passengers riding in traveller’s suitcases and clothing. Furthermore, despite their name bed bugs can actually be found all over the house, occupying space behind skirting boards, cracked wallpaper or under sofas. This makes them quite difficult to find and treat without fumigating the entire home.
What can I do?
If you suspect you’ve come in contact with bed bugs while travelling, it’s very important you take the time to wash all clothing, bags and fabric accessories before they become established in your home. Keep an eye out for signs of bed bugs by looking for small drops of blood on bedding, similar to a spatting of ink, and checking in the seams of mattresses for signs of infestations. Bed bug bites are most often smooth and red in appearance, so if you’re finding unexpected itchy marks on your skin bed bugs could be to blame.
By keeping a clean home and regularly checking soft furnishings for signs of infestations, you can protect yourself, your belongings and your property from the harmful effects of infestations.
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