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BED BUGS: Dispelling Myths About Infestations

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It seems like every week we are hearing from viewers with bed bug infestations. So we decided to talk with the experts to dispel some myths about the pests.

Michael and Amy Louck live in a clean, quarter million dollar home in Ankeny, and they're fighting a bedbug infestation.  There's a misconception that bedbugs only infest dirty homes and slum apartments, but that's not true.  The Loucks got them when the bugs hitched a ride on a bed frame they bought on Craigslist.  Now, they’re spending thousands of dollars to get rid of the pests, and have thrown out everything that may have come in contact with them.

"We've thrown out probably $10,000 dollars in stuff I would say," Amy Louck says,   "Most of the kids toys, all of the furniture that was in our daughters room, things that aren't going to be easy to replace.  Christmas presents, doll furniture, everything we could part with."

According to the Polk County Health Department, that may not be the best way to get rid of the pests.  "If you have a bedbug infestation chances are that they're hiding in the carpeting, in outlets, in baseboards of the walls." explains Sarah Boese with the Polk County Health Department, "So just throwing out items that you think might be in contact with the bedbugs probably won't get rid of the problem completely."

According to the Polk County Health Department the best way to get rid of bed bugs is to hire a professional to super-heat your home.  Using chemicals yourself just won’t work.  The Health Department also suggests regularly inspecting mattresses and bedding for signs of bed bugs like small black spots or tiny blood stains.