Bed Bugs & Student Accomodation

Should students be concerned about bed bugs?

With the new academic year just around the corner, students will be returning to rented accommodation, and the last thing any student will be thinking of is bed bug infestations.

Bed bugs are becoming more common, and they’re notoriously difficult to get rid of. So students should be taking measures to prevent these pests from entering their new living spaces.

What are bed bugs

Bed bugs are tiny parasitic insects that feed on blood. They have existed for thousands of years but were almost eradicated in the developed world during the 1940s. However, with increased international travel, tolerance to pesticides, and even an increase in buying and selling second-hand furniture, bed bugs can spread more easily.

Bed bugs are wingless, with very sturdy legs which can climb vertically on most surfaces within the home. They are reddish-brown and can grow up to 6mm in length. It’s very hard to spot bed bugs as they hide in the tiny cracks and crevices in furniture and the seams of bed sheets.

They often leave small dark marks (faeces) near the buttons of clothing and bed sheets, indicating their presence. More evidently, after biting humans multiple times during the night, their bite marks can show up as little red spots – a sure sign of an infestation.

What can you do to prevent bed bugs?

Before unpacking your bags, inspect your room. Look around the bed frame and mattresses for blood spots on the sheets, headboard, or the bottom of the mattress. You should purchase a mattress protector designed to prevent bed bugs from taking up residence.

Always ensure your room is kept clean by never leaving dirty laundry on the floor as bed bugs as this will provide a good nesting place for bed bugs.

If you notice the tell-tale signs of an infestation, alert the landlord or agent of the property, or university staff. Don’t delay in seeking help, as you want to eliminate the bed bugs and prevent them from breeding any further.

If you’re sure there is an infestation, call a professional pest controller who will advise you on what to do to prepare for a bed bug treatment.

Typically, you will be expected to remove all bed sheets and curtains and wash them thoroughly. All rooms must be vacuumed, tidy, and clean. Empty all drawers and wardrobes, and only bring clothes back into the room when they’ve been washed and tumble-dried.

Be careful not to put objects into other rooms to prevent further spreading. Instead, objects that cannot be washed, dried, or sprayed with insecticide (books, CDs, shoes, etc) should be placed in a freezer overnight.

A pest controller will then use a residual insecticide spray for the walls, floors, ceilings, bed frames, and mattresses.

The process can take up to two weeks for bed bugs to be eliminated.

For free advice and professional bed bug treatments in Scotland and Yorkshire, get in touch with The Bed Bugs Experts.