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Declaring War on Bedbugs

24 Sep 2014

Tips & Advice

Declaring War on Bedbugs

The scientific name, Cimex lectularius, of a certain blood sucker might leave most scratching their heads in utter confusion, but a mention of its common namesake, the bedbug, will leave many Singaporeans shuddering in fear.

Those who have fought a war with these terrifying bloodsuckers are left with numerous red bites that itch like mad. The healing process thereafter is equally worse – sufferers are left with ugly scars that often take months to disappear. While they are not hazardous to a person’s health, these are pests that should not be left to thrive, and it’s imperative to eliminate them immediately on discovery.



But the question is, how do you get rid of bedbugs? The bad news is that these bugs can thrive practically anywhere in your household, especially in hard-to-reach areas – headboards, light switches, behind torn wallpapers, cracks and crevices, and the list goes on.

When left to their own devices, they can lay up to 500 eggs over a two-month period.

And they can live for more than a year without ‘food’. Bedbugs are larger and hardier than dust mites. They can survive much more extreme environments and conditions.

Yes, if you haven’t been hit by the bug infestation yet, pay close attention: cleanliness and constant vigilance are essential keywords here. Regularly clean your room, vacuum your bed, and take note to detect bedbugs in your luggage and clothes while traveling especially if you have stayed in cheap getaways where the level of hygiene is questionable. They can easily be transferred from an infested place to another, and you wouldn’t want to be caught dead with a gang of nasty bedbugs migrating to your house.



For those already embroiled in a nasty battle with these pests, there’s good news: Singapore’s rainy and humid conditions don’t sit well with these temperate climate lovin’ insects. To add on, they are extremely susceptible to heat. That is why it is important to scrub your linen by washing them with a mild soap in hot water of at least 48 degrees Celsius.

Double the prevention by putting your linen to dry in the sun; for the uninitiated, the sun’s rays not only banish the bedbugs for good, but also kill other germs present in your bed sheets. You can also substitute sunning by putting your linen in a dryer.

Do check your mattresses’ seams for bedbugs. You can place your mattresses out in the sun as well. After the mattress has been under the extreme heat of the sun, gently beat the mattress with a stick or even a badminton racquet so that any dead bedbugs will fall out.

Wait there’s more. To prevent any further infestation, use an adequate sealant – a good suggestion would be silicon gel – and seal up all crevices in the bed frame, and holes and cracks around in the room.

If these tips don’t help and evidence of their existence persists (i.e. brown spots and shriveled skin casts on your bed covers and mattresses), your last resort will be to call up a local pest control company.


Cover photo courtesy of

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