Want to know how to get rid of bed bugs without reading this entire site or without spending a fortune on pest control? I’m going to explain how you can do this yourself using natural products found at most stores.
- Perhaps you live in an apartment complex and the owner feels it’s too expensive to hire a pest control company;
- Perhaps you want to erect a barrier that will prevent bed bugs from entering your apartment or condo;
- Perhaps you have been bitten, are afraid that your brought them home with you and want to prevent them from spreading?
- Perhaps you have no idea what is biting you, but want to put an end to it?
How to get rid of bed bugs is as simple as spreading around a powder called Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth (also know as Silica Dioxide, Silicone Dioxide or Bed Bug Dust). This is non toxic, can be purchased at just about any feed and supply store and as you can read from visitor comments, works great!
Here is my page on how to create your own non-toxic pesticide and how to apply bed bug dust right the first time so you don’t have to do it again!
Some people have had luck with flea and tick powder which is suppose to do what diatomaceous earth does; that is, dehydrate the bugs and causes them to die.
You spread this around your room (create a perimeter) and when the bed bugs cross the dust / powder, they coat themselves and become dehydrated.
That is exactly how to get rid of bed bugs and prevent them from entering your rooms, etc.
Just this week I read a report where a team of scientists have found a way to scare bed bugs.
Bed bugs usually don’t come out to feed until humans are in a deep sleep which seems to be around 4am. They don’t usually appear in the day and can be very hard to spot (they are good at hiding!).
By spraying an area with a synthetic version of a bed bug’s alarm pheromones, bed bugs were found to start moving within five minutes after the application regardless of the time of day!
Diatomaceous Earth works great as long as the bed bugs walk through the powder; with this new discovery, the bed bugs become so agitated, it’s almost guaranteed they’ll cover themselves with dust (provided it’s applied in the right locations).
There needs to be more testing before you’ll be able to buy Diatomaceous Earth mixed with these alarm pheromones, but if all goes well, you should start seeing products very soon.
For now, the best way to kill bed bugs is by applying Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth in the right locations. There are a ton of comments from visitors from around the world explaining how they got rid of bed bugs using this natural powder found on our bed bug treatment page.
Warning! Make sure it’s FOOD GRADE Diatomaceous Earth – if it isn’t, it’s dangerously unhealthy!
Diatomaceous Earth (aka Fossil Shell Flour) is sometimes found in amorphous form, which can cause silicosis; it should NEVER be mentioned without a safety warning near enough so it can’t be missed. On the other hand, food-grade DE is considered a safe additive in foods and feed, and regularly used to prevent digestive infestations in livestock.
A visitor, Tom 1303, has taken the time to write everyone on how to get rid of bed bugs which I’ve included below – Thanks Tom 1303!
I am going to share my experience with you all in hoping it provides comfort and hope.
I moved into my new home on June of 2010. By end of September I noticed my feet was itching and little bites on them. The home has a pool and I been spending a lot of time outside so I dismissed them as chigger and mosquito bites. My mom drove cross country to see our new home. She even was worried about stopping at hotels in fear of bed bugs. I remembering laughing. So my mom gets here. We finally got our 8 grand for buying our new house and went and bought 2 new living room sets and my wife and I insist she takes the bed and we will sleep on the sofa pull out.
After a few days my mom starts getting what looks like a rash on her arm and its driving her crazy. We chalked it up to chiggers as we had been doing some yard work. Well time came and went and she left. My wife and I went back into the room and switched sheets my wife found the Bed Bugs that I laughed about weeks ago. I called my mom right away to warned her to check her bed wash all her clothes she brought with her. We got lucky she didn’t take any home with her.
My wife and I panicked which is the first thing you should not do. We threw out our mattress. Went to war with em. Cleaned everything just like I am sure you all have. We even waited like a month before buying a new bed to be sure and slept on an air mattress. All appeared well we bought a new mattress and box spring even bought a mattress cover but it ripped. I also bought glue pads and placed under the 4 post of my bed. Then my son started showing bites. They moved to his room. We panicked threw out his mattress.
Did all we mentioned above, but this time we hired a exterminator. He came out treated the 2 rooms. All once again seemed well. Then my daughter and my grandson was getting bit. So we repeated the above called the exterminator back out this time he retreated my son room and ours also did my daughters room. All once again seemed well. We then noticed our backs were getting bites. We looked all over the room and nothing. Turned out the little bugs had made it into our brand new furniture. Well I cant afford to replace the furniture. So I checked on a bed bug heat treatment and was going to cost about $3,500. So that was out. I called terminx Who said would be $1,200 and they would finance it but would only offer a 30 day guarantee. The way the bugs been coming and going we didn’t want to pay monthly for something and still have the bugs. So we declined.
I did a lot of research on line watched you tube videos and realized our infestation wasn’t near as bad as it could be. I went to my local do it yourself pest control. She told me to buy a insecticide called phantom it was $100.00 and you mix 4 ounces with 1 gallon of water. She told me a local exterminator that has a trained bed bug dog buys that stuff from her. So i figured why not. I also went online and bought a Steam cleaner for 90 bucks at walmart. (be sure it gets over 140 degrees).
We lifted the couches sprayed the Phantom bed bug spray all over the underneath of the couches. all over the box springs all along the floor boards even bought a special sprayer that would spray the phantom mix into the cracks. We formed a moat of the spray around all our beds. It dries don’t worry. Bought Harris bed bug spray at Ace hardware and sprayed the mattress’s and top of couches. We let everything dry.
We then bought some Diatomaceous Earth from Ace hardware and spread it underneath the bed between the mattress and box spring. In the cracks of the bed frames. (I seen this via online videos on how to apply) PLEASE BE CAREFUL DO NOT GET POOL GRADE Diatomaceous Earth!. Anyway about a week later our steam cleaner arrived. I went into action and steam cleaned the couches and mattresses . Burnt my hand doing so but I didn’t care I was getting steam in every crack and fold of the couches. A week later I found more bugs but they were dead. (The phantom takes 7 to 10 days to work) I then vacuumed up the Diatomaceous Earth steamed cleaned all the floor boards all cracks, bed and couches.
Once all was dried placed Diatomaceous Earth in the electrical outlets (took off the face plate and placed it in the hole of the wall around the outlet) * (Be careful) * Also retreated the beds with Diatomaceous Earth as noted above. I resprayed phantom as noted above. I am not seeing any live bugs now. I steam my couches twice a week and respray phantom once every 3 weeks now.
I am not saying I am bed bug free as adults can hide for a year but I am saying My family is bite free and sleeping good as well as able to sit on my new furniture. I think of it as a war and I feel the phantom spray and steam cleaner are helping me win this war one battle at a time. I will never laugh when I hear someone say they are afraid of bed bugs ever again. I had the same fears as all of you have had. I was afraid someone would see a bug crawl on me at work or I would bring them to work and infest the office.
There for a while every little thing I felt I would jump and make sure it wasn’t a bed bug. I have had to stop family from coming into town and visit me as well as cancel get-together’s at my house this summer. I have spent lots of money in drying my cloths over and over.
I know it feels like you will not make it through but trust me if you keep at it and be persistent you will.
1) Bed Bug Dust (Diatomaceous Earth)
2) Bed bug spray
3) Bed Bug Steam Cleaner
Seems to really be helping me.
I wish you all the best of luck!
Joseph B recently left this comment which deserves to be listed as well – thank you!
I’ve been spending nearly full time reading all about bedbugs (from doctoral theses to anecdotes, from pesticide toxicollogy reports to IPM programs, etc) for well over a year now, and there is a lot of mis-information about bed bugs so let me clear a few misconceptions!
Getting rid of furniture is hardly ever a sensible part of eliminating bedbugs. The only two cases that can make sense is if 1) the item has become so discolored by extrusions of remnants of past feedings that the item is no longer suitable for use AND it can’t be covered (such as with a mattress cover) – some pieces of furniture might be too discolored with only a several spots on them, others might have huge quantities of spots where they can’t be seen, so they don’t really matter; OR 2) the item cannot be reliably treated, because it’s so terribly infested and/or it’s shape and materials inhibit all reasonable and practical forms of treatment (which is very rare). Of course if you genuinely don’t need an item anymore, then sure; discard it.
Throwing out items (mattresses or anything else): 1) is wasteful if not necessary 2) will probably spread them within your dwelling 3) is likely to spread them within your community, such as if somebody else comes along and takes your discarded item (which makes it all the more likely you’ll get them again) 4) will not solve a problem except in the very rare cases that all bedbugs are in ONLY that specific item at that particular time. That’s just SO terribly unlikely.
IF you discard any furniture you need to break and/or slash it thoroughly enough that nobody will pick it up and take it to their dwelling.
Washing fabrics has nothing to do with controlling bedbugs. They can survive without oxygen for a LONG time. When putting fabrics in a dryer to control bedbugs; the fabrics MUST be completely dry. Once they’re completely dry, THEN they need to remain in the dryer at the highest temperature for at least 30 mins. They need to be put into a bag DIFFERENT from the one they were brought in, and sealed up. If your home is still infested and you unseal the bag there, consider the whole bag infested again.
A steamer that only gets to 140F will be of little use in controlling bedbugs. I don’t recommend a steamer. It’s VERY time consuming to get any benefit (you have to move it VERY slowly), you get very LOW return from it at best (only bugs heated to the proper temperature for the proper time will be affected), and it risks blowing bedbugs (especially the terribly hard to see babies) around and spreading them even more in your dwelling. But if you think you want to use one anyway; it should get to at least 180F (which is a rather dangerous temperature to be wielding). Be sure to put a towel or something around the end so there’s minimal pressure and water coming out; it’s ONLY the heat you really want.
It’s very unlikely you will vacuum up many eggs. When laid deliberately, they’re stuck with a very effective cement in place. However sometimes a female will lay eggs instinctively out of distress and in these cases they’re not necessarily stuck in place. If you go vacuuming, you should stick the foot end of a stocking hose into the vacuum to catch everything going in. This way you can minimize the risk of your vacuum becoming a haven for bedbugs. If you don’t do this, you risk a female laying viable eggs inside your vacuum after getting sucked in.
People who say they did something or other then 1 week later undid it … too bad you didn’t wait! The eggs can take more than a week to hatch (the outside figure seems to be 14 days, with 8 to 11 days being typical). Ideally, you should leave any treatment in place for TWO MONTHS. The likelihood that you don’t have bedbugs anymore is very very low.
For those of you who’ve deluded yourselves into thinking you’re going to force 100% of them to starve to death .. Don’t, that is a pipe dream.
Bedbugs are repulsed by light NOT attracted to it .. wow… if you want the heat from a light to be an attractant, you need to get the temperature of the filament down to about 100F permanently… good luck with that!
WHATEVER you do, do NOT try to spray repellent on yourself, nor all over your house. That’s not going to do a thing except waste money.
You will NOT force bedbugs to starve to death no matter WHAT you do!
A lot of people here claim they no longer have bedbugs, but they give NO information HOW they came to that conclusion. Most likely they came to the conclusion as a matter of the logical fallacy of hasty generalization; “I don’t see bites therefore I don’t have bedbugs.” As logical fallacies usually are; that’s a false conclusion. You may very well simply no longer react to the specific protein that causes the allergic reaction, but still be getting bit regularly. Various studies indicate wildly different #s, but it’s reasonable to say that most people don’t react to getting bitten by bedbugs.
Even if you do kill EVERY bedbug and egg in your residence, there’s always some risk you can get them again. If you got them once, perhaps your household is exposed to more than nominal risks (your households’ school, office, church, visitors, etc). Don’t be too surprised about getting re-infested. Got rid of them a year ago and have them again now? Yes; that’s likely to happen. Go start getting good information on the Internet somewhere.
So until we can get them under control throughout our civilization (and I have high hopes we eventually will); learn to not freak out about them, and most importantly learn to not over-react.
Here is Ethan’s Story on how he got rid of bed bugs:
Hi everyone. I have had some horror stories with bed bugs. About 7 years ago I was in Vancouver, and I lived in a cheap apartment. I saw all these little brown bugs around, some of them were quite large. I was such an alcoholic at the time that it It took me a few months to realize that the bugs were actually biting me.
At first it was a few little unobvious bites, but not much. After being bitten thousands of times I guess the allergic reaction started, and i had trails of hives all over my body every time a bug bit. I finally did a bit of research and I realized what i had was a severe bed bug infestation!
There were soo many of them that they didn’t physically have room to hide. My mattress was literally covered…if you moved a poster on my wall, there were literally thousands in behind. They were all over the corners of the room and on the floor piled up on top of each other under the bed, and all around the radiators. So I up and moved. Sadly I did not do enough research because they followed me, and of course my new roommates didn’t like it very much.
They tried to treat the problem with spray. But the damn bugs were literally crawling away from the spray! They seemed to know their impending doom. I did my homework this time, and I washed all my clothes and dried them on hot, and I moved myself with just a few garbage bags of clothes to a new apartment. No furniture or anything came with me. Finally I was free and have remained bed bug free for a few more years. By this time though I was completely traumatized by the damn things, especially now that I quit drinking and couldn’t drink away the fears. Then I moved back to Toronto with a roommate for a while. Afterwards I moved into my first apartment on my own without roommates. I furnished it all from scratch, went into debt over it….the apartment was beautiful!
Two weeks after living there, I saw a familiar bug crawling on my computer table. Panicking, I looked around and found where they were inhabiting a crack in the wall in the corner and also in my closet. There were signs of feces all around the walls too. I did tons and tons of research, and because of the fact that they weren’t that hard to find, it lead me to believe the infestation was quite severe. Usually you can barely find the damn things, especially in the case of a small infestation. Later that same day I saw a bed bug-infested mattress just lying in the hallway of my apartment building near the elevator..and it clicked.
I was in a 300 unit highrise….the bed bug prison from Hell! I reported it immediately and my landlords sent this exterminating company to come along and spray around the room a few times. I did enough homework to know that this was shit. I went around and polled a bunch of neighbors on my floor….they all had the same story…
1) they all had bed bugs, 2) they had had their apartments sprayed numerous times, and 3) the bugs always came back.
Oh i felt so sick. I knew what my landlords would do would never work. I knew what had to be done to get rid of them was practically impossible, especially in a building so friggin large. I only made $15 an hour, so it’s not like I could afford $thousands either. And frankly I figured a multi-dwelling highrise full of poor people was was doomed. I got very stressed and depressed quite quickly, and frankly it took me to a very dark place. I did not start drinking again, but started fantasizing on how I could just off the balcony and end my torture.
After another week and 2 spraying attempts, I broke my lease, through everything out (except for my clothes which I washed on hot), and I moved into a furnished room for rent. The only things that I didn’t wash were a couple duffel bags, which i left outside on the balcony for a couple weeks in the winter…..but I guess it wasn’t cold enough. A couple months later I saw bites, and looked around, and I realized I had brought them with me to the new room for rent. I was planning to leave town in a month anyway, so I just quit my job on the spot and left….only with my clothes this time….no duffel bags.
I spent a month at my parents house in the middle of winter in mantioba before moving to Calgary. Here I started fresh, and lived in three different apartments..no bed bugs! About a year and a half ago I discovered a bed bug infested mattress in the dumpster behind my building. I freaked out and immediately called my landlords, but no one had reported it, so I posted a memo under everyone’s door in the building. I also did a lot of research and by this time diamotaceous earth was now on the internet and a few of comments about it. I am still questioning the authenticity of the comments because a lot of them seem to be on sites plugging the product.
I put DE all around my apartment, and did it every couple of months, and I was very careful not to vacuum right up to the walls. Anyways I did this for about 6 months and never saw any signs of bed bugs. Life in dirt, though no glamorous, really wasn’t so bad! I also bought an emergency tent that remains unopened in my storage room just in case. About a year ago I started getting lazy with the DE routine…I didn’t apply any fresh coats. I still didn’t vacuum right up to the edge of the walls, but I think it was gradually disappearing over time.
I hadn’t seen any bites or any other bed-buggy mattresses around, or any signs at all…so i didn’t really worry. A couple weeks ago I got these itchy bumps all over my butt and on upper thighs. it struck we as weird, especially being in such a localized area. At first I thought “Great…..genital warts”. So I went to the doctor and he said no definitely not….looks like an allergic reaction to bug bites. I didn’t have a good handheld mirror so I hadn’t really had the chance to inspect myself previously. I immediately got really nervous. Could it have been mosquitoes? How could mosquitoes even get to an area I had covered so well as my butt? Especially in Calgary in the rainiest summer ever…and I knew I had not worn shorts… And the bites were lasting for two weeks now and only mildly itchy.
Now I’m paranoid. it’s hard to tell if there are bug bites on my thigh areas now or if it’s just small pimples mixed in with the hairs. I might have a bite on my mid-cheek, but it’s hard to tell and not itchy. I have not been one to react extremely to the bites in the past. Gradually over time I know the reaction gets worse. I am not 100% sure i have bed bugs, but pretty darn sure if’s not fire ants or spiders or mosquitoes. So I am now about to put DE all over once again and going to say a few prayers. Gosh I hope this works.
One thing I would love to know is to hear more DE success stories. I saw so many on other sites, but it always seemed like a plug for the product. I asked an exterminator if DE was good, but he told me it wasn’t. But can I really trust them anyways? I can’t really expect exterminators to sell me on cheap DE as it will result in me not spending $ thousands on spraying, now can I. Please I would love some advice. Somebody please tell me that DE works!
In response to Ethan’s story / question, yes, DE really works to help get rid of bed bugs and in fact, you’ve proved it to yourself. You can also read the testimonials on my bed bug dust section – the only reason they came back was that the place you were living in had infested rooms right next to yours. You can treat your unit all day long, but unless the management takes action, you’ll just be keeping them at bay; when you stop your applications, they will be waiting to enter and bite. Moral of that story – you can get rid of bed bug with DE, but you have to be diligent as does the landlord if living in a multi unit complex.