Bed Bugs on Mattress

Bed Bugs on Mattress – Can Bed Bugs Live Inside Your Mattress

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Bed bugs on mattress and bed bugs in a house are a fairly common complaint. These insects are great hitchhikers and will travel on trains, buses, airplanes and on your clothes and luggage. A clean house doesn’t make you exempt from bed bugs as most people associate these pests with unhygienic surroundings.

Can Bed Bugs Live Inside Your Mattress

The short answer is Yes, They Can! Discovering a bed bug infestation in your mattress is frightening. Who would want to share their bed with annoying, bloodsucking pests? The answer is no one. While your first thought might be to throw your mattress away, there is no reason you need to go to that extreme. For some, replacing a mattress is not feasible. Fortunately, there are ways to treat your mattress.

Bed Bugs on Mattresses Where They Hide and How to Find Them

Signs of Bed Bugs on Bed Mattress
Signs of Bed Bugs on Bed Mattress

Bed bugs are quite pesky little buggers. They bite, suck your blood, and just leave at night. Bed bugs are notoriously hard to spot with the naked eye and most people frankly do not know where to begin. Not that strange considering that they make it impossible for people to find them because it is all an active effort to stay under the radar. Once you know that bed bugs like to stay tucked away in dark and dry places, you can start your search with much more confidence than before. Bed bugs on the mattress like to stay in between the seams of the mattress.

By simply looking at the sides and lifting the mattress can reveal a lot more than you wanted, but now you know what you are dealing with. The mattress alone is not the only place where bed bugs reside, even though the name may strongly suggest that bed bugs are only confined or only prefer the bed. Bed bugs prefer any place that is a good escape and a good hiding place. Get a flashlight ready and shine it between all the gaps, screw holes, and under loose paint. Bed bugs are minuscule insects so hiring pest control technicians are the best option here.

Do Bed Bugs Live in Mattress or Box Spring?

An adult bedbug clings to the edge of a mattress after the bed covers were removed to identify the cause of insect bites in a residential apartment building by a pest control technician
An adult bedbug clings to the edge of a mattress after the bed covers were removed to identify the cause of insect bites in a residential apartment building by a pest control technician

They have the possibility to invest both the mattress and box spring, but since they prefer to stay close to their host, the mattress is preferable. If your box-spring is made from wood, it may well be a possibility that bed bugs may hide and breed in the gaps, crevices, and gaps that have formed. Bed bugs prefer porous material such as wood where cracks and other deformities over time can give them a good hiding place. When your bed frame is made out of aluminum or steel, there is no way bed bugs can exploit the metal to stay hidden because there is nothing to go into.

How Do Bed Bugs Get Into Your Mattress?

Bed bugs and bed bug eggs on a bed mattress
Bed bugs and bed bug eggs on a bed mattress

Before we determine how bed bugs can make it in your mattress we first have to determine how they come into your home in the first place. First of all, bed bugs are expert hitchhikers that can cover long distances into anything they can get in. This includes your luggage, your clothes, and even old wooden furniture. This is how they cover long distances. Now for bed bugs in your mattress, this might mean that bed bugs must have found their way in through either your clothes or luggage left on your bed. They can get into any material that breathes which means that it has to be porous. From there on bed bugs will find their way into the seams of the mattress where they stay tucked away under the radar and start to infest the mattress step-by-step.

Create a Safe Space

You need to create a safe space for your bed. Most people position their beds against a wall to help save space. In this instance, your best bet is to move your bed away from the walls. Make sure there are no other pieces of furniture nearby. In fact, you should remove everything from around the bed, including clothing and shoes.

Bed bugs are incapable of flight and they cannot jump, so they must make their way onto your bed by crawling. Of course, they can always crawl across the carpet and up the best posts, right? The answer is yes, but you can place traps around the legs of your bed. There are traps/monitors specific to bed bugs.

Place each leg of your bed inside the center of the trap. In an attempt to climb into your bed, bed bugs will climb into the outer lip of the trap. There, they will become stuck and unable to climb up your bed our back out of the trap. Using this method of prevention, you can keep bed bugs out of your mattress.

Use Heat to Your Advantage

Extreme heat kills bed bugs. Remove all of your bedding – sheets, blankets, comforters, and pillowcases – and place them in the washing machine. Make sure you wash everything in hot water only. Afterward, move them immediately to the dryer and use the highest heat setting. Make sure you allow everything to remain in the dryer for at least thirty minutes.

In the meantime, get a hold of a steamer. Run the steamer over your mattress to help sanitize it and kill bed bugs. Make sure you steam the mattress thoroughly. You will need to steam along the surface, but make sure you pay careful attention to seams and edges. Seams and edges are where bed bugs prefer to hide and lay their eggs.

Steaming will take time and patience. Do not work too quickly. Pace yourself so you can ensure you are applying enough heat to sufficiently kill live bed bugs. It is said that bed bugs are exposed to 113 degrees of heat will die in roughly ninety minutes. If you can manage 118 degrees, it only takes twenty minutes for them to die.

A dryer usually produces 120 degrees of heat, so that is plenty to kill bed bugs. When using the steamer, however, you will want to make sure you work slowly. If nothing else, steam every inch and then go back and repeat the process one or two more times to make sure you do a good enough job.

Protecting Your Bed and Mattress Against Bed Bugs

Bed bugs feed on human blood and their bites can be painful, itchy and uncomfortable. There are a few why you can protect yourself from these pests while you sleep whether or not you have an existing infestation.

bed bug mattress cover
bed bug mattress cover

First, inspect your mattress, bed and box spring thoroughly to see if you have bed bugs. If you have obvious signs of being bitten, you still need to make sure that the culprit isn’t some other insect such as fleas or ticks. Use a flashlight.

Next, get a protective mattress cover that also wraps the box spring. If you already have bed bugs in your mattress, they will eventually starve or suffocate to the death between the mattress and the casing. A light colour casing is preferable since it will contrast the bug’s natural brown colour and make them easier to see. Make sure that the mattress cover is specifically designed to protect against bed bugs.

Wash your bedding regularly and heat-dry. High temperatures, above 45 degrees Celsius, kill bed bugs. Avoid throwing your dirty clothes on the floor. Vacuum your bedroom regularly to pick up stray bugs and consider installing door sweepers at the bottom of your bedroom door. Seal any cracks and cervices that the insects may use to get into your room.

Finally, consider placing a bed bug trap under your bed.

These options work both for preventing bed bugs and for managing an existing infestation.

Call a Professional Exterminator

Bed bugs are difficult to exterminate even for professionals. They often require multiple treatments and more than one method depending on the extent of the infestation. DIY bed bug removal is rarely successful. Many of these over-the-counter products are not as effective as advertised and are potentially harmful to small children and pets especially if not used according to directions.

A bed bug exterminator in Toronto relies on specialized knowledge and concentrated pesticides which are not available to anyone besides licensed exterminators due to strict chemical control laws and guidelines. He will also do follow up treatments if necessary and seal your home to prevent the problem from recurring. Hire a pest control company that offers a warranty for the extermination of at least six months.

Article Updated: October 22, 2020

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Joe The Exterminator
Joe The Exterminator

Joe is a professional pest control exterminator with over 15 years of experience and enjoys sharing his knowledge about different pests and how you can deal with them.