Bed Bug Repellent - Does It Work?

Does Bed Bug Repellent Work?

Don't let the bed bug bites! Learn the truth about the effectiveness of bed bug repellent, what you need to do to prevent the bites and how to get rid of those blood sucking pests.

Bed bugs – the idea of having these fast growing urban pest in your bed and house is enough to send anyone running for an insect repellent immediately. After all, realizing there are thousands of these little brown bugs crawling in the mattress that can bite and suck your blood in the dead of night not only can ruin your sleep but is also enough to affect you psychologically and harm one's quality of life.

As such, if you have been bitten by bed bugs, you may feel the need to invest in some sort of bed bug repellent (spray, lotion or cream) for the skin to repel and prevent further bites.

However, do these repellant insecticides really work to prevent bed bugs and their bites? Here are some facts...

Conventional insect repellents, do not appear to be effective in detering against bed bugs or their bites.

According to Dr. Dini M. Miller, Ph.D., an associate professor in Urban Pest Management at Virginia Tech's Department of Entomology, they tested several repellant insecticides on bed bugs and found that none of the repellent insecticides have had any effect against bed bugs.

He says on MSNBC:

 ...we have found bed bugs to be very determined little creatures and I think it would be hard to stop a hungry bed bug. In addition, the repellants that you buy for mosquitoes last only a couple of hours before the effects begin to wear off. If you apply a repellant before getting into bed, a lot of the material could rub off on the sheets etc. Also, bed bugs are most active between 3 and 5 am, which is several hours after the time you would have put the on the repellant to go to bed. Bottom line, a repellant may prevent you from getting a bite or two but I do not believe that they will significantly hinder a hungry bed bug.

These results have also been further confirmed by the University of Kentucky. According to them:

 Conventional insecticides used as skin repellents such as OFF (DEET) to deter ticks and mosquitoes, do not appear to be effective against bed bugs. Attempting to avoid being bitten by applying insect repellent at bedtime is not recommended. Sleeping with the lights on is not likely to deter hungry bed bugs either.

However, if you are looking for a bed bug repellent for luggage to prevent bed bugs from hitchhiking undetected in your clothes and luggage back to your home, you may want to check out the bed bug control spray by JT Eaton.

You can watch the product demo and learn more about the bed bug spray here...

Other Frequently Asked Repellent Methods For Killing Bed Bugs

Does Lysol Kill Bed Bugs?

Similarly to common insecticide spray, Lysol itself will kill the bed bugs only if you sprayed directly on the bugs with it. Areas sprayed and treated with this disinfectant will only keep bed bugs away while it is still wet otherwise once it dries, the bed bugs will return again.

Does Alcohol Kill Bed Bugs?

Alcohol will kill bed bugs on contact and can be apply similarly like a bed bug spray. While it can be use temporaily as a bed bug repellent, it need to be used often to control an infestation since it does not remain long enough on the surfaces to continue killing the bugs. As such, it is not a very effective way to get rid of bed bugs permanently.

Does Bleach Kill Bed Bugs?

While bleach does kill bed bugs, the method is not recommended. Bleach will ruin carpet, furniture, mattresses and paint as well as also cause irritation to your skin. It is best to limit its use for killing bed bugs in items you can launder and hard surfaces that are bleach safe.

Does Boric Acid Kill Bed Bugs?

Boric acid is often used as an insecticide and repellent for the control of cockroaches, termites, fleas, silverfish, and many other insects. However boric acid is a stomach posion and the commerical attractants maunfactured in it to attract common insects will not work on bed bugs since bed bugs are attracted by carbon dioxide and will only feed on blood. Furthermore, boric acid is especially toxic to small children and animals and can cause serious kidney damage when accidentally consumed.

Bottom line, bed bugs are resourceful, opportunistic and are very hardy pest and currently, there are no known medically proven bedbug-proof repellent that will work 100 percent to repel them or their bites. And certainly, even there exist a repellent cream or lotion for the skin, it will not stop their growing populations which can escalate into a full blown bed bug infestation problem within the house or apartment, making future extermination more difficult.

On Treating Bed Bug Bites

For fast relief from the itchness of bed bug bites, you are advised to wash the affected area with soap and warm water for approximately a minute which will minimize the inflammation.

After washing, you can then apply an antihistamine cream or no-itch cream. Some of the recommended topical steroid creams for bed bug bites treatment are hydro-cortisone ( Cortaid Intensive Therapy Moisturizing Cream, for example) that helps to stop the itch and resolve any rash quickly.

Methods to Prevent, Treat and Kill Bed Bugs

There are several methods to prevent and treat bed bugs that work better in every department than bed bug repellent. The following methods can help get rid of bed bug infestations as well as help to prevent bed bugs in the first place:

Bed Bug Proof Mattress Encasement

Mattress Encasement

There are mattress encasement products labeled "allergen rated" or "for dust mites" available that will prevent and kill bed bugs. Once encased, the bed bug proof mattress cover help contain existing bed bugs within the mattress from escaping (thus killing them due to lack of food) and prevent new bugs from entering and re-infesting the mattress. It is also recommended to keep the encasement on for at least one year to keep bed bugs out of the mattress, and eventually kill any bed bugs trapped within.

Protect your mattress and box springs with Bed Bug Proof Bedding Encasements

Steam Treatment

Bed bugs are very sensitive to heat and using a professional bed bug steam cleaner can help get rid of bed bugs and their eggs even if they are hidden in difficult or hard to reach spots. In additional, bed bug steamer can also be used to clean and sterilize toys, stuffed animals, shoes, luggages or any other items that cannot be easily wash with hot water. Killing bed bugs with steam is completely safe and is also a cost-effective way to cleanse your home and get rid of the little pests.

Kill bed bugs naturally with the most effective range of bed bug steamers!

Insecticide (Diatomaceous Earth)

Diatomaceous earth is the fossilized shell from aquatic diatoms. It is a 100% natural and organic pest control dust that scratches and cuts the exoskeletons of hard bodied insects like bed bugs on contact, causing them to dehydrate and asphyxiate. Diatomaceous earth lasts virtually forever if left untouched and provides continuous and long-lasting control against bed bugs.

Get Mother Earth D BedBug & Insect Control Diatomaceous Earth Powder -- $14.95

Note: If your house is infested with bed bugs and you are still unable to take care of it yourself, hire a professional licensed bed bug exterminator and make sure that they have a well established history of getting rid of bed bugs.

Find Experienced Bed Bug Exterminator -- Get Fast, FREE Quotes Here!

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