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Bedbugs: Your Questions Answered

WebMD readers get answers to their questions about bedbugs.
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Protection and Prevention continued...

Be vigilant, Henriksen says. If you are in a hotel, check the bed before you go to sleep. And when you return home, wash everything in hot water. Bedbugs can’t survive temperatures above 113 degrees Fahrenheit. As for hospitals, you’re right. They are not necessarily bedbug-free zones. Henriksen says that 12% of NPMA pros treated hospitals last year. 

If our home is now free of the bedbugs, how could they get into our bed in the first place? Do they come with us or things we brought from outside?

Your coworker, the person sitting next to you at the movies, that secondhand sofa you just bought -- all might be carrying bedbugs. They’re real hitchhikers. "But we don’t want anybody to be paranoid,” Henriksen says.

Elimination

Once the apartment is fumigated and everything is washed, sealed in plastic bags, what else can I do to prevent them from coming back? How do I make sure that any eggs that were not killed by the exterminator that hatch are killed before they can reproduce and re-infect?

Other than being cautious about what you bring into the house, there’s not much that you can do. Henriksen says that most pest professionals will schedule more than one treatment in order to be as thorough as possible, so hopefully those eggs you are worried about won’t hatch. 

What is the best way to rid yourself of these nasty little creatures?

Call a pro. 

How to get rid of them in the quickest possible time and the easiest way possible?

Getting rid of bedbugs is neither quick nor easy. The better question is, what is the most thorough way to get rid of them. Again, Henriksen recommends working with a professional. Expect to do a tremendous amount of laundry and sealing things in bags prior to treatment. 

In a tropical country like the Philippines, they're almost everywhere! How can we get rid of them? We live in a city, in a condo.

Henriksen says that climate is less of a factor than crowding. Bedbug infestations are more common in big cities, especially in densely populated neighborhoods. 

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