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Bed Bug Prevention Tips for Portland Parents As School Season Returns

children lined up to bus

When you send your kids off to school again in the fall, you’re probably not thinking “I sure hope my children don’t bring bed bugs home with them today.” After all, parents have plenty of other things to think about. The unfortunate reality, however, is that your children might give bed bugs an opportunity to invade. While it is true that bed bugs are a year-round threat in Maine, there are certain aspects about late summer which create higher risks for potential bed bug infestations.

Why the Return of School Could Mean the Beginning of Bed Bugs

Bed bugs depend on the blood of hosts to survive. The hosts they choose to feed on include any warm-blooded animal, but they seem to prefer the blood of humans. This preference for humans creates a tendency for bed bug infestations to be found in areas with high human activity. Some of the most common spaces with this influx of human activity include airports, libraries, hotels, public transportation, and—that’s right—public school facilities. Over summer break, as families have taken trips and vacations, it is likely that some people unknowingly brought bed bug souvenirs home with them. And once bed bugs have made their way into a home, they begin to lay eggs, which can hatch, grow, and begin laying their own eggs in a span of 7 weeks.

When school starts, bed bugs from a bed bug-infested home can be brought to school with someone’s child. This could result in the school becoming infested, which could lead to your child bringing a bug or two home with them. Or the bugs could be brought to your child's friend's home, and then to your home... And the cycle continues.

How to Prevent Bed Bugs From Invading This School Season

The spread of bed bug infestations is tricky and bed bugs are notoriously difficult to get rid of, especially after infestations have had time to mature. The only sure-fire solution for existing bed bug infestations is proper treatment from a qualified pest control company. But there are some steps you can take to try to prevent bed bugs from getting into your home in the first place.

  • When your children return from school, have them check their backpacks and other school items for bed bugs.
  • Bed bugs love to hide in the folds, creases, and pockets of clothing and bags, so be sure to check these areas for adult bed bugs and their eggs.
  • If you notice signs of bed bugs on any belongings, put these items inside the washer and dryer on the highest heat setting. Any bed bugs or eggs won’t survive the extreme temperatures of a wash cycle.
  • Direct your children to keep their belongings away from other children’s belongings at school, if possible.

Once your home has been infested with bed bugs, removing them from your property is nearly impossible without expert help. Big Blue Bug Solutions handles bed bug invasions so you don’t have to. For existing bed bug infestations, be sure to call Big Blue Bug Solutions for effective bed bug treatments and service options!