How to avoid bed
bugs in seniors' homes?
Bed bugs are intruders who invade our homes when we lower our guard. Their presence is usually noticed in residences and in this case, in the homes of the elderly. Indeed, in Montreal, this is a recurring problem among these elderly people who are already very vulnerable to the covid-19 pandemic. Under these conditions, it is imperative to take.
The proof: The Journal de Montréal informs us that despite the numerous deaths related to Corona virus, two CHSLDs have been infested with insect pests. CHSD Vigi Mont-Royal was infested with ants, while CHSD Argyle in Saint-Lambert had to use an exterminator due to bed bugs.
So how do we get rid of this very embarrassing problem for the elderly?
What to remember about bed bugs
Bed bugs are very invasive and dangerous to health. It would be ideal to know how to detect them to act effectively. This will help prevent and control bed bug infestations.
Characteristics of bed bugs
Bed bugs are characterized by a number of aspects:
- Bed bugs have an oval and flattened shape. They are about 4 to 7 mm long and are visible to the naked eye;
- They are brown in adulthood. The color changes from red to dark brown when they are filled with blood;
- They move like ants do not jump or fly;
- Bed bugs can live up to 5 or 6 months. However, its lifespan can reach up to a year without feeding when they fall into lethargy.
- Bed bugs breed by laying eggs all over the confines. Its eggs are whitish in colour and are the size of a pinhead. The hatching period lasts about 10 to 14 days.
How do I detect the presence of bed bugs?
Bed bugs usually hide in the dark corners of the house,especially the bedroom. They avoid light unlike spiders and often appear at night like mice. Here are some clues to detect the presence of this pest:
- On the skin,visible bites are comparable to those of mosquitoes and cause itching. The stung parts of the body are those not covered during sleep. The stings can spread all over the body if the affected individual continues to sleep in the same infested area;
- Black spots due to the feces of bed bugs are found on sheets or mattresses;
- There are also traces of dead bedbug skins, eggs, or live bugs around or near the bed.
These unwanted guests sneak into the residences: drawers, clothing, mattresses, covers, books, curtains, wheelchairs, etc. No place is safe from these critters. They spread from one apartment to another, from room to room when travelling or transporting infested used objects. They spread on the walls and ceilings of houses, in clothes and sofas.
Hantavirus, definition and mode of transmission
Hantavirus is a severe lung syndrome caused by a virus. It is secreted in the urine, feces and saliva of infected animals. Most often these are rodents. When humans come into direct or indirect contact with these secretions, the virus is transmitted to them. Ditto when they are bitten by infected rodents.
However, the virus is not transmitted from human to human, only from animal to human. This type of disease is called zoonoses because they can only be transmitted to humans through an animal. It has been found that domestic animals (apart from the domestic rat) and livestock cannot contract hantavirus so there is every reason to believe that only rodents can carry it.
Symptoms of hantavirus
Being a lung disease, one of the characteristic symptoms of hantavirus is difficulty breathing. At the beginning of the disease, the infected person begins to feel fever, chills, headache and muscle pain.
It is about two weeks after the appearance of the first symptoms that they are usually accompanied by a feeling of shortness of breath. Nevertheless, this last manifestation of the disease can be observed after two days as after six weeks; it depends on the organism of the individual.
Hantavirus can also lead to kidney disease or infection. And although they are rare and very few people are prone to them, there is currently no treatment to combat these ailments. It is therefore better to be careful not to contract them.
Preventing and eradicating bed bug infestation
Cleaning up or vacuuming every half hour can help keep the seniors’ residence clean, but cannot guarantee a bed bug-free home.
How can the infestation be prevented?
To prevent bed bug infestation, you absolutely:
- Remove the parts from anything that might be cumbersome and unnecessary;
- Check the undersides of beds, covers and shoes of the elderly regularly;
- Inspect the nooks and cranies of the rooms regularly;
- Also inspect used documents or clothing stored in drawers and closets;
- Be careful not to bring back abandoned items on the sidewalks, salvage items, without having inspected them thoroughly.
Eradicating the infestation
There are several options for fighting bed bugs.
- Opt for steam engines to clean beds, mattresses, furniture and keep your home always clean and airy;
- Avoid using commercial insecticides especially, as they can cause serious health problems for the elderly;
- Call on professionals who specialize in the eradication of bedbugs;
- Follow the exterminator’s recommendations. He will visit all the rooms of the suspected residence to assess the extent of the infestation to eradicate it and the treatments will extend to the complete extermination of the parasites;
- Opt for the services of the Montreal Exterminator team which is a company specializing in the extermination of wild animals such as bed bugs, mice and rats,carpenter ants, wasps and water fleas …
There are also natural ways to keep bed bugs away from your home.
Natural tips for getting rid of bed bugs
Tea Tree and lavender essential oils are natural insecticides. Bed bugs can’t stand the smell of these oils. Take two teaspoons of tea tree oil or a dozen drops of lavender essential oil that you mix with 50 ml of water, then spray!
Cloveessential oil also plays the same role and its use is similar to that of Tea Tree.
Diatom soil is also an effective natural insecticide. Sprinkle a thin layer under the bed and against the baseboards of the walls and you’re done!
In conclusion, talk to this company that spares no effort to provide a healthy space for seniors.