Can you use a steam iron to kill bed bugs? Is it an effective remedy? We’ve tried to address all these questions in this short yet informative article!
Whatever might be the problem, there is always some other home remedy available on the internet for treatment. Similarly, when looking for a quick and economical solution for treating bed bugs, there are many home remedies that you might come across. Even though heat is considered the most effective way to treat bed bugs, getting it done through a professional can be costly. Hence, a popular home remedy came into effect for treating bed bugs using a steam iron. But the question remains, how effective and feasible is it? And can you use a steam iron to kill bed bugs? Learn more about the treatment option and other related information by going through this article.
Can You Use a Steam Iron to Kill Bed Bugs?
As mentioned earlier, heat can help you get rid of bed bugs quickly, and steam iron can create enough heat to kill them instantly. Ironing the mattresses in quick strokes after setting them to the highest temperature can help you get rid of most bed bugs. But it might not be helpful in completely eradicating bed bugs from the house. Here is why:
1. Restricted to Fabrics and Mattresses
You can only kill bed bugs present on the mattresses or cushions or something with a fabric material. But bed bugs can hide in the crevices of the walls, in household equipment, or in cupboards. Although the majority of the bed bugs are present on or near the bed lurking for the host, they can still hide in small cracks and crevices. You can use steam iron on fabric but not on the wall, which makes it difficult for a complete eradication of the bed bugs.
2. It Doesn’t Penetrate Deep Enough in the Mattresses:
Even if you use steam iron for killing bed bugs on the mattresses, the heat is not high enough to penetrate deep into the fabric and kill bed bug eggs. However, this might help get rid of the adult bed bugs moving on the surface of the mattress.
In conclusion, you can use a steam iron to kill adult bed bugs and for instant relief until you get rid of all of them, including the eggs. Spotting bed bugs can be challenging too, but bed bug bites are one of the signs that might suggest a bed bug infestation.
How to Differentiate a Bed Bug Bite from a Mosquito Bite?
Came across a bite or rash on the skin that appeared overnight? There is a possibility that it is just a harmless mosquito bite, but it might also turn out to be a bug bite. Here is how you can differentiate between a bug bite and a mosquito bite.
This is the most challenging characteristic for differentiating between the two as they look pretty similar. Bed bug bites are red, puffy, and looks like a pimple. On the other hand, mosquito bites are light red to pink in color, small, and have a wound in the center.
This is one of the key ways for telling the bites apart. Bed bug bites usually occur in a pattern such as a line or zig-zag, while mosquito bites are random. Also, there is less possibility of mosquitos biting a lot in the same area.
How to Treat Bed Bug Bites?
1. Clean the Area
Washing the infected area with soap and water can help the spread of the infection. Use an organic soap that has no harmful chemicals to avoid further reactions.
2. Apply a Cold Compress
This will help in reducing the redness and puffiness of the bite. Apply a cold compress in the bug bite and avoid scratching it with your nails to stop infections.
3. Relieve Itching
- Apply a paste of baking soda and water to reduce itching.
- Aloe vera gel has a cooling effect and can reduce irritation.
- Lemon juice is also helpful in treating itchiness and reducing inflammation.
If you have extreme pain, you can either take some oral medications on the doctor’s recommendation.
Causes of Bed Bugs
This is the most common cause of bed bug infestation. Bed bugs can hitchhike on suitcases, clothes, bags, purses, etc. To avoid this, try using hard-sided luggage instead of the ones made with a clothing fabric. Also, separate your travel laundry and do not keep it unclean for longer durations.
2. Used Furniture
Another common reason for a bed bug infestation is used furniture. Always inspect if you buy any second-hand furniture and avoid picking up any furniture lying on the street.
How to Use Steam Iron for Bed Bugs?
Start ironing your bedsheets, pillow covers, comforters, blankets, and other bedding items with a steam iron. Then, throw it in the washing machine and run a normal cycle on heat settings. Let them air dry, preferably under direct sunlight and store them away from other bedding items that you haven’t washed yet.