Can Bed Bugs Come Back after a Professional Treatment?

Once your professional bed bug treatment has been completed, and the infestation has been fully eradicated, you should be able to rest assured that your nightmare is over. The blood-sucking pests have been beaten back, and the invasion is at an end. From here on out, your worries are over and you’ll never have to deal with another invasion of bloodthirsty bed bugs. From here on out it’s smooth sailing all the way.

Unfortunately, things don’t always work out the way we plan. 

One of the most frequent questions we hear from clients after a successful bed bug treatment is “will the bed bugs come back”. It’s a complicated question, and one that doesn’t have a simple “yes” or “no” answer. To get to the bottom of this we’ll first have to go back to the beginning and talk a little about where your bed bugs came from in the first place. 

Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?

Bed bug infestations are a lot like viral infections. In other words, they don’t just spring up out of nowhere. Somewhere about your travels, or your interactions with other people, you encounter a bed bug or three and follow you back to your home or office. Once there, they set up residence and begin to build a new colony.

Let’s look at a quick and simple example.

Let’s say that your home is clean and tidy and perfectly free of pests. No bed bugs to be seen. You invite your Cousin Kevin and his family ‘round to spend a few days and celebrate the holidays. When Kevin and his family arrive you put mum and dad in the spare room and double up the children with your own kids. Everyone’s good to go for the next week or so, and all there is to worry about is having a good time over the holiday break. 

Now, your cousin Kevin doesn’t realize it but he’s been exposed to bed bugs while traveling for his work. Somewhere along the way he’s picked up some stray bed bugs and they’ve hitched a lift into your home on his suitcases. When Kevin and his family unpack their luggage those bed bugs eagerly start making plans to build a new colony right there in your home. 

Of course, all of this is likely to go unnoticed at the time, and it can take months before you notice any signs of a bed bug infestation. In fact, so much time may have passed that it’s unlikely you’ll be able to really pinpoint the start of the infestation. You may never realize that cousin Kevin and his family were the viral cause of your bed bug trouble. It’s an all too familiar scenario, and one of the most common ways that bed bug infestations spread.

History Repeating

A properly performed bed bug treatment will leave your home or office totally free of pests. You will, effectively, be given a clean slate. Unfortunately, history does tend to repeat itself. Even though your treatment has been successful, you still run the risk of bringing in a new bed bug patient zero. Visitors to your home, or business clients in your office, may bring along a stray bed bug or two that will hop off their current hosts and set up shop in your home or office. After all, if it happened once it can certainly happen again.

This is one of the things that make dealing with a bed bug infestation so frustrating, and can lead people to question whether or not their latest treatment has really been successful. But as we know, it only takes a couple of stray bed bugs to start a full-on invasion and those wayward pests can hitch a ride in on just about anyone’s coattails.

Preventing a Return of Unwanted Pests

Following a successful bed bug treatment it is important to remain alert to the signs of a new bed bug invasion. Yes, you’ve been given a clean slate but that doesn’t mean you aren’t still at as much risk for a bed bug infestation as anyone else on the block. To keep your home or office free from pests you need to take some proactive measures. 

For example:

  • When you are away from home carefully inspect hotel rooms for signs of bed bug activity before unpacking your luggage. If necessary, relocate if your hotel room shows any signs of bed bug activity.
  • Keep suitcases in resealable plastic bags during hotel stays to reduce the risk of picking up bed bugs.
  • Vacuum out all suitcases when returning from your travels, especially if you have stayed in a hotel or inn. 
  • If you are having overnight guests ask them to carefully check their luggage for bed bugs before they come to stay.
  • Regularly inspect areas where pets sleep for signs of bed bug activity. It is not unusual for pets to bring bed bugs and other insects into your home.
  • Avoid bringing second-hand furniture into your home or office. Used furniture is one of the most common methods bed bugs have of entering an environment. If you must purchase second-hand furniture have it thoroughly inspected (and if necessary treated) for bed bugs before bringing it into your home or office. 

In Conclusion

Following a comprehensive bed bug treatment there is always the fear that the pests may return. However, if you remain diligent and take the necessary precautions you can greatly reduce the risk of a second infestation. Remember, bed bug infestations are like viruses, any exposure you have to the pests increases your risk for a full-scale invasion. If you are worried about bed bugs making an unwanted return to your home or office contact your bed bug removal experts for advice on how to reduce your risk so that you can remain bed bug free for the foreseeable future.

Published by Scott Palatnik

If you believe you’ve brought bed bugs into your home or office, give us a call, we can help!
Now with 2 locations. On Long Island @ 516-619-6149, or in NYC @ 212-299-9186
We are Long Island Bedbug Inspections.
Your Bedbug Inspection, and Elimination solution. 

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