How to Prevent Bed Bugs in College and University Residences

 

With the new school year fast approaching, College and University students are now starting to make their way back to campus.  Unfortunately, this is a time when we see bed bug infestations start to rise. Bed bugs have been long been known to infest entire post-secondary residences and other forms of student housing.  It is the perfect environment for infestations as students from all over the globe gather into small living quarters. Bed bugs tend to move very easily and quickly from room to room on furniture, backpacks, books, luggage and other items that students carry with them. 

 

The best defense is knowing the how-to steps on avoiding bed bugs while you are away at school.

 

Steps to take on Moving Day

  • As soon as you enter your new room, it is best to do a thorough inspection BEFORE you bring any boxes or furniture in.  Inspect the windowsills, walls, carpet, baseboards and mattresses for any signs of live or dead bugs. 
  • Clean your room thoroughly before you start to move in your belongings.   This includes vacuuming, moping and wiping down any existing furniture. 

 

Keeping Up With Prevention

  • Avoid second hand items such as furniture and bedding, if possible.  Unfortunately, sometimes these items offer more than their intended use.  If you decide to use second-hand items - thoroughly inspect them prior to purchase so that there are no surprises.
  • Keep your room as clean and clutter-free as possible.  Ensure that clothing is hung or put away. Encourage any roommates to also keep their areas neat and tidy. 
  • Launder often.  This includes clothing and especially bedding.  It's a good idea to invest in a bed bug resistant mattress cover in order to protect your mattress and yourself.   
  • Vacuum frequently.  Consider not just the floors but take the vacuum to your mattress and along the mattress seams. 
  • Consider bed bug monitors.  They're an effective way to detect any bed bug activity. 

 

All the above methods not only help with bed bugs but also helps keep other critters at bay.

 

What should I do if I think I have bed bugs? 

If you believe that you have bed bugs, you need to take action straight away. If you are in a residence on campus, contact your school's office.  Most schools have policies in place for dealing with pest issues.  If you suspect you have bed bugs and you live in a rented apartment - contact your landlord immediately.

 

Avoid bringing bed bugs back home

It's a parent or guardian's worst nightmare.  Your son or daughter is away attending school and while off on break - they bring home bed bugs.  Below are some tips on avoiding the spread of bed bugs in the home. 

  • Thoroughly inspect any luggage, backpacks and books for any potential hitchhikers. If possible, leave these items in a garage or covered porch area for 24 hours.
  • When your student returns home for a visit, ensure that all dirty laundry is immediately placed into the washer. Dry on high heat in order to kill any remaining bed bugs. 
  • It is best to not allow your student to bring any furniture from their residence into your home.   

 

Interested in more information about Bed Bugs?  

Read more: 

About Bed Bugs 

Best Methods to Control Bed Bugs

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