There is a big misconception that bed bugs are the result of poor sanitation and/or poverty. The truth is this; bed bugs do not discriminate based on one’s social status or the cleanliness of their home. Cleanliness has nothing to do with getting bed bugs as infestations can occur in the most expensive hotels, multi-million dollar estates as well as homeless shelters and everything in between, regardless of the existing sanitary conditions.
Most bed bug infestations happen when the bugs are brought in from an already infested environment and introduced to a previously un-infested one. Some occasions may include staying in a bed bug infested environment, having guests visit and they bring infested bags with them, purchasing an item or accepting delivery of an item that has bugs or eggs on it, and so on. As a result, bed bug infestations can affect anyone, anywhere, and are occurring in hotels, apartments, single family homes, upscale commercial office buildings, school classrooms, Laundromats, public transportation and the list goes on and on.
So, if someone has bed bugs, don’t assume their home is dirty or cluttered, but while sanitation may not have anything to do with the onset of an infestation, it can have a tremendous impact on the ability to control or eliminate an infestation.
Crowded and cluttered living conditions give a better breeding place for bugs and yet, they are one of the most challenging obstacles to overcome in an eradication effort. Bed bugs hide and lay their eggs virtually everywhere. As a result, clutter provides an unlimited number of areas where bed bugs can harbor and remain well-protected from control efforts.
The indoor pests most people are familiar with are ants, mice, and cockroaches. These pests are associated with poor sanitation; they get their food and water from our homes when we don’t clean up. But bed bugs are different. They only eat and drink blood, so they don’t care how dirty the home is.
But the reason why good sanitation and space in the home are important is because bed bug control may be more difficult in a cluttered and dirty home. Clutter gives bed bugs places to hide. When they hide, they are harder to find through visual inspection when there is dirt everywhere. In a cluttered home, pest monitoring is essential to detecting an infestation before it grows and spreads. There is a need for proper sanitation to eliminate bed bugs and to avoid the spread to other parts of the environment.
Any environment can be infested with bed bugs. Therefore, bed bugs are not a sign of poor sanitation. It is not a sign that you do not wash your sheets or take care of your home. Any socioeconomic class can get bed bugs as it is not a poor person’s problem. Bed bugs can be picked up anywhere, by anyone, at any time. If you get bed bugs don’t be ashamed, it only means that you left your house. Get help to eliminate the spread.