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If you are waking up with welt-like areas, especially if you have recently gotten a used bed or furniture, you may have bedbugs. Other signs of a bedbug infestation are blood stains on your sheets or pillow. An offensive, musty odor, this is from their scent glands. Or small parts of eggshells or shed skin in a particular area, this will most likely be found by where they are hiding.

 

If you suspect an infestation remove all of your bedding and check it carefully. Both their egg shells and shed skin are translucent. Bedbug excrement is black or rusty in color. In addition to your bedding check all areas around the bed like books, edges of carpet, electrical sockets, as well as closets because they can attach to clothing.

 

If you have an infestation take the following steps to exterminate them. Clean bedding, linens, curtains, and clothes in hot water and dry in a dryer on the highest setting. If an item like shoes or stuff animals cannot be washed put them in the drier on high for thirty minutes. Vacuum your mattress and the area around your bed frequently. Once you are finished vacuuming immediately place the vacuum bag in a trash bag and throw it away in an outside bin to prevent re-infestation. Repair cracks in plaster, peeling wall paper, and get rid of clutter around your bed, all of these things give bedbugs another place to hide.

 

Use bedbug proof mattress, boxspring, and pillow protectors. Any bedbugs inside cannot get out so they will eventually starve. They can live up to a year without feeding though so make sure the protectors stay on until they are all dead. If you decide to get a new mattress instead make sure your home is no longer infested or they will infest the new mattress. Either way bedbug proof mattress, boxspring, and pillow protectors are recommended.