The thought of a bed bug infestation can terrify even the most rational person, leaving those with bed bugs feeling powerless and ashamed. Bed bug outbreaks are often sensationalized by the media, creating misleading myths about the pests and stereotypes about who and where they infest. But many common "truths" about bed bugs aren't actually true at all.
We've broken down some of the most common myths about bed bugs below, to ensure you have the correct information should you ever encounter these biting bugs. Not sure what bed bugs look like? Read our bed bug identification guide here.
Myth #1 - Only Dirty Homes Have Bed Bugs
Not true! Bed bugs aren't attracted to debris or dirt, but instead to people and animals as blood is their food source. The cleanliness or messiness of a home has no impact on its likelihood to be infested by bed bugs, especially as bed bugs are often brought into the home from hotel rooms, movie theaters, schools, and even house guests. While a messy home may attract pests like cockroaches and ants, bed bugs will only infest a home if they are brought into the home and find a food source.
Myth #2 - Bed Bugs Are Only Found in Large Cities
False! Bed bugs do live where people and animals are, so there may be more bed bugs in large cities (as there are more people in large cities) but bed bugs can also be found in the suburbs and rural areas. Remember, bed bugs are often brought into the home from other infested areas via a suitcase, piece of furniture, or even a guest, none of which are geographically sensitive. If you live outside of a city, you should be just as diligent when inspecting for bed bugs as those that live in urban areas.
Myth #3 - Bed Bugs Carry Disease
Nope! Bed bugs do not carry or transmit disease to humans or animals. Their bites may be itchy or red, but they will not infect when they bite.
Myth #4 - You Must Throw Away Your Possessions if Your Home is Infested
Not at all! Fortunately, most of your possessions can be treated and saved from bed bugs, it will just take some persistence and effort to remove the bed bugs.
A truly, overwhelmingly infested mattress or box spring should be thrown out (and marked with "Bed Bugs" to warn trash collectors) but mattress covers can contain bed bugs and prevent new bed bugs from infesting mattresses. Couch and chair covers can also protect furniture.
High heat kills bed bugs, so running any fabric possible through the dryer (set to at least 120 degrees F) will knockdown bed bugs. Steri-Fab can also be used to kill bed bugs on contact.
Items like books and stuffed animals can be placed in plastic containers along with vapor strips to kill any bed bugs that may be on or in these items.
Read our guide on how to get rid of bed bugs for more information on how to remove bed bugs from your home, but rest assured, you do not have to trash your entire home if an infestation occurs.
Myth #5 - You Must Hire Professionals to Treat an Infestation
Not so! Professional bed bug treatments can cost thousands of dollars and require multiple visits to your home. Instead, you can do it yourself with DoMyOwn!
DoMyOwn has several bed bug control kits that contain the professional grade products you need to treat your home for bed bugs. Our handy bed bug treatment guide will walk you through the steps you need to take to control an infestation in your home. And following our bed bug prevention guide, along with products like mattress encasements, bed bug monitors, and more will help stop future infestations.
If you have bed bugs, explore our selection of bed bug control products to begin your treatment. If you have any questions about controlling bed bugs, give our customer service team a call at 866-581-7378 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.