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Health Scare of 2011 ~ Bedbugs

January 4th, 2012

Health scare: Bedbugs via MSN

Bedbugs are notorious city dwellers. But now the little bloodsuckers are spreading so fast that even suburbanites are finding them under mattresses and in dark corners. Infestations leaped by as much as 30 percent in 2011, according to a new survey from the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). The reason for the spike isn’t entirely clear, though the study points to an uptick in travel, bedbugs’ increased resistance to pesticides, and a lack of education on how to stop their spread.

Outlook for 2012: Scientists recently convened in Washington, D.C., for the Second National Bed Bug Summit, but it may be a while before we see the results of their strategizing. After the meeting, the EPA awarded 1-to 2-year research grants to explore new methods of eradication. In the meantime, you can expect the spread to continue: The little buggers are among the toughest pests to eradicate, according to the NPMA.

Protect yourself: Bedbugs like to hide near their food source-sleeping humans-so check around your sheets, pillowcases, and mattress for tiny black spots (excrement), reddish spots (crushed bugs), small white eggs, or bloodstains. If you suspect you’re sleeping with the enemy, place a Climbup Insect Interceptor Bed Bug Monitor and Trap ($20) under each leg of your bed. A slick layer of talc lining the traps will capture any passing pests. Catch a couple? Call an exterminator who’s trained in dealing with bedbugs. Click here for even more ways to eliminate germs from your life.

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