Early detection and prompt, effective action is critical to prevent bed bugs from becoming established in an apartment building or buildings. Once established, bed bugs are among the most difficult and expensive pests to control. Success demands aggressive action and perseverance in tracking down and eliminating every last bug.
Residents can help prevent bed bugs by:
- Not using mattresses, beds, or other furniture that has been discarded, and by carefully inspecting used or reconditioned furniture.
- Reducing clutter, which provides hiding places for bed bugs making treatment difficult or impossible.
- Vacuuming and laundering bed linens and clothing on a regular schedule.
- Isolating their beds by installing encasement on mattresses and box springs, pulling their beds away from walls, and raising bed skirts so they do not touch the floor.
Management can help prevent bed bugs by:
- Training all residents on bed bugs including what they look like, what their bites look like, importance of prompt reports to management if bed bugs are suspected, and ways to minimize the likelihood of bringing bed bugs into the building.
- Reducing bed bug hiding places by sealing cracks along baseboards and moldings, around pipe chases, in floors, etc., and by removing or re-gluing peeling wallpaper, removing peeling paint, and fixing damage.
- Bagging and discarding belongings left behind by vacating tenants.
- Destroying or damaging infested beds and furniture that residents are discarding so that they cannot be reused by another resident.
- Scheduling regular inspections of apartments to detect bed bug infestations.