For one thing, bed bugs are notoriously difficult to locate and eradicate. They are one of the most challenging jobs exterminators face. Even the professionals use specially trained dogs to pinpoint their location.
So you might follow all the label directions of the extermination products but never even reach the bed bugs you’re trying to kill. Then, you’ll have to hire a professional exterminator anyway and you’ll be out that cost plus what you spent on the pesticides—not to mention your time.
There’s also the issue of safety. DIY extermination products can be very dangerous if used improperly. It’s easy to pooh-pooh this—and many competent DIY folks may have that reaction—but pesticides aren’t something to play around with. The cost of making a mistake is not just lost money and time. It’s not overdramatic at all to say that you’re putting into jeopardy the health of everyone in your home unless you’re trained to use pesticides.
If you’re thinking about trying to exterminate bed bugs from your home on your own, consider these dangers—both financial and physical.
Most off-the-shelf extermination products don’t have the residual strength to permanently eradicate bed bugs—they’re a waste of money. ? Many extermination products are labeled for bed bugs but aren’t actually effective on bed bugs. ? Even following label instructions, it’s easy for an amateur to make a mistake in application that can cause health problems for pets as well as people, particularly children or those suffering from certain medical issues. ? DIY enthusiasts tend to like to think of creative solutions, but there’s no room for that with DIY extermination products—if you don’t follow the label exactly, you’re asking for trouble. Never try to mix up your own bed bug “cocktail” or treat areas that aren’t specified on the label.
If you really want to be involved with the pest control effort, focus on integrated pest management—seal up entry points, take care of any problems with excess moisture, and eliminate any food sources.
But unless you’re highly familiar with extermination products and procedures, your best move is to call a professional pest control company as soon as you suspect you have a bed bug problem.
That company will be able to find them where you probably wouldn’t have been able to. And they’ll know how to safely and effectively get them out of your home for good.