READING, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--In spite of growing public awareness of infestation of bed bugs, and how to eliminate the problem, there continues to be reports of bed bugs on college campuses across the nation. A survey presented by the National Pest Management Association indicated 47 percent of pest professionals treat college dorms for infestations, which is why many college websites are proactively addressing the issue. The Rentokil Companies (Ehrlich Pest Control, Western Exterminator, and Presto-X Pest Control) want college students and their parents to be aware of these pests and offer the following advice:
Identifying bed bugs is easy. Adult bed bugs are about one-quarter of an inch long or about the size of an apple seed and resemble a flat apple seed or lentil. While bed bugs are most often found in mattresses and box springs, they can also conceal themselves behind baseboards, wallpaper, upholstery, electrical switch plates and beneath cushions in chairs and sofas.
Prevention includes paying close attention to the following:
- Second-hand furniture, especially mattresses, box springs, recliners, and couches should be thoroughly examined for signs of a bed bug infestation before being brought into a dorm or home.
- Before putting sheets on the dormitory or off campus apartment bed, inspect the mattress and bed frame for bed bug activity.
- If possible, fit mattresses, box springs and pillows with protective covers before you put on linens. These bed bug and dust mite proof encasements eliminate bed bug entry and escape points.
- Perform regular bed bug inspections by checking the entire bed for bed bugs skins, fecal stains, and the bugs themselves.
- Bed bug fecal stains look like small spots of ink from permanent black markers that have bled into the fabric.
- Visitors should not place backpacks or belongings onto the bed or cushioned furniture.
Careful inspection of personal sleeping areas and the implementation of these prevention tips will help keep bed bugs from being unwelcome visitors both in the dorm or apartment, and when the student returns home.
The Labor Day holiday signals the informal end of summer, and for many families across the country now is the time for another annual ritual, “back to college.” It’s not just books, supplies and finding your classroom that are the only challenges anymore. Preventing the spread of bed bugs is now an important part of the college survival kit.