How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Permanently Using Home Remedies
You are here because you have been feeling the pain of getting bitten all over by bed bugs. You are looking for home remedies that can help get rid of bed bugs quickly. Be warned. Home remedies for bed bugs don’t work overnight. It takes a lot of persistence and patience.
Find the source
Bed bug infestations won’t ever go away until you find out why and where they are coming from. Here are some of the most common places in the house where bed bugs hide. The earlier you find the source of the infestation, the higher your chances of getting rid of bed bugs quickly.
Mattress and pillow covers
Bed bugs want to be as close as to their food source (aka you) without being seen throughout the day. The mattress and pillows offer a great harborage in that sense. Box spring mattresses, for example, have hollow spaces and seams that serve as ideal hiding spots for bed bugs.
Headboard and bed frame
Next up is the bed support. Wooden headboards, for example, may have tiny crevices and cracks where bed bugs can hide and lay their eggs. Bed bugs could also be hiding behind the fabric of upholstered headboards.
Furniture, rugs, and carpets
Bed bugs may also hide in the vicinity of the bed. This may include bedside furniture such as nightstands or gaps within the area rug (if you have one placed underneath the bed).
Inside the walls
Some bed bugs may make their way inside the bedroom walls. They can enter through small cracks or may even climb through the holes of power outlets. Bed bugs may hide inside the walls until it’s safe to move closer to an ideal feeding spot.
Home remedies to get rid of bed bugs
Here are some home remedies that may help get rid of bed bugs. It’s important to note that most bed bug infestations won’t disappear overnight. It requires patience and persistence before you start to see the bed bugs disappear.
Keep bed bugs away from the mattress
Your first course of action should start with the bed. Remove the mattress and pillow covers. Wash and dry them at high heat. Bed bugs need to be exposed to a temperature of at least 45 degrees Celsius and for a duration of at least 90 minutes.
Next, steam clean and vacuum the mattress, the bed frame, and the headboard. Steam and vacuum every nook and cranny you can find. Once the mattress is treated, enclose it with a bed bug cover. Don’t go too cheap. You need to use a high-quality mattress cover that can trap any bed bugs that are already hiding in your mattress.
With the mattress and pillow protected, you now need to prevent more bed bugs from climbing up the bed frame. Placing bed bug interceptors under each bed leg could be a cheap way of preventing bed bugs from accessing your mattress. If you have a wooden bed frame, you could also consider replacing it with a metal one, which bed bugs have a much harder time climbing and hiding within.
As a temporary measure, you may want to also move the bed frame in order to create a sizeable gap between the bed and the wall. This is to prevent bed bugs from getting to you via the headboard. Make sure anything on your bed, such as a duvet or comforter, is tucked in and not making any contact with the floor.
For added protection, you could create a fortress wall around the bed using food-grade diatomaceous earth. It’s a non-toxic powder that can kills bed bugs by acting as a desiccant.
Wash everything at high heat
Start putting all your clothes into sealable bags. Wash and dry them at the highest temperature the fabric will allow. Continue to keep fresh clothes in these bags to prevent bed bugs from hiding in them. This is also a good time to declutter. Start disposing of any old clothes and home materials you no longer need. You want to minimize all possible spots where a bed bug may try to hide.
Use a dish soap solution spray
The above steps should spare you from getting bitten while asleep. The next step is to start hunting for the bed bugs. They tend to be most active at night (between midnight and 4 AM). Wake up a few times in the early hours. Create a homemade bed bug spray by mixing a few drops of Dawn dish soap with water. Keep the room dark. Shine a light at bed bug hotspots. Start spraying as soon as you see the scurrying pests. Dish soap spray will kill bed bugs on contact. For obvious reasons, you can spray anywhere but the electrical power outlets.
Diluted rubbing alcohol spray will also kill bed bugs on contact. It’s not something, however, we would recommend for safety reasons because rubbing alcohol is highly flammable.
Frequently asked questions
What is the main cause of bed bugs?
There are many causes of bed bug infestations. They may have come from used furniture you bought in a yard sale or a thrift store. They may have hidden inside your suitcase while travelling. Bed bugs can be problematic in hotels and hostels. The bed bugs could also be coming from your neighbors.
Do bed bugs ever go away?
Yes, bed bugs can go away if you put in the work. Bed bugs won’t disappear overnight. Your job isn’t over just because there are no bed bugs in sight. Bed bugs can hide and remain dormant for many months before dying off. You need to remain persistent and apply the appropriate remedies to give a bed bug infestation no chance of reviving.
What smell do bed bugs hate?
Bed bugs supposedly hate a number of different smells, including that of peppermint, tea tree oil, and neem oil. Scent, however, isn’t an effective way of killing bed bugs. It will simply cause the bed bugs to move elsewhere. It would also only make sense to use scent as a deterrent if it was being applied in an enclosed space.
Can bed bugs live in your hair?
You are unlikely to find bed bugs hiding in your hair or other parts of your body. They simply aren’t adapted to live in your hair. Most bed bugs prefer to feed at night then move back to a safe hiding place, such as the mattress seam, until they become hungry again.
Can you see bed bugs with the naked eye?
Yes, bed bugs are visible to the naked eye. Adult bed bugs are typically dark brown in color. They will turn more red when they are filled with blood. UV flashlights may help you spot bed bugs more easily at night.