The first thing you do when you see a bed bug is begin to research. It actually takes a while to figure out what the process is going to be like, because so many of the top links are horror stories from people. Here’s what you should do when you find a bed bug or think you have them.
- Don’t clean or throw anything out (it will make it harder for the inspector to find them)
- Call your management company, they will pay for the inspection
- If you find an actual bug, try not to kill it and get it into a ziplock bag. If you already killed it, pick it up off whatever you killed it on with some tape and put it in a ziplock bag for your inspector/ management company.
- Seriously. Don’t clean anything.
Once the inspector comes, you’ll know if you have a problem or not, or at least you’ll know if it is severe (my inspector and bed bug sniffing dog found nothing, so the situation is expected to not be TOO big of a deal. I am not as hopeful).
Your best friends will become your dryer or a Pack Tite and some vacuum packing bags. I’d recommend the Pack Tite because you can operate it in your home instead of lugging your shit too and from the dryer and worrying that it’s not really getting hot enough.
That being said, my Pack Tite and I have had our share of issues along the way.
Once everything is vacuum packed, they will come and treat. I don’t really know what happens after that (I find out tomorrow. FUN!) but I assume feeling OCD and freaked out about whether or not they’re gone.
The prep takes a LONG fucking time. Days and days. So many days I’ve watched almost a whole season of Psych, and I don’t really even like it that much. One of the more disconcerting things on top of that is the knowledge that if you misstep, unpack everything to early and the bugs come back, you’ll have to do it allllll over again. I’m blocking that possibility out for now.
I’ve been through all the stages of grief at this point (twice) and I *think* I’ve accepted my fate by some positive self talk.
“It’s ok, Tiffany, you just have some new interesting hobbies. Think of what you can tell people.”
Person with no bed bugs – “So, what are you doing after work?”
Me – “Oh, ya know, just heating a bunch of my shit to 120 degrees for about an hour and then sealing it in a vacuum pack. You?”
PWNBB – “Ummmm, going to the gym and then dinner?”
PWNBB – “Are you drinking this weekend?”
Me – “Nope, not drinking but there will be lots of alcohol. RUBBING ALCOHOL that is. You know, because I spray it on everything I own to help kill/ deter the bed bugs.”
Me – “My morning beauty ritual includes an intense, 10 minute inspection of my body to see I I have any new bed bug bites.”
So far my favorite hobby has become inspecting every piece of lint I see everywhere. I have a promising future as a lint analyst, so suck on that, people with engineering degrees.
Peace, love and pack tites,