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Archive for June, 2011

A lot has been written on how to go about preventing bedbugs from getting into your home, but what should you do if you are one of the unlucky few who end up having to deal with an infestation? Unfortunately, the pests can be very persistent and difficult to get rid of, but by taking the right steps you can make things a bit easier on yourself.

To begin with, inform your landlord and neighbors about the problem. If you've got bedbugs, chances are the people living next door do, too. It may be embarrassing, but for all you know they could have given you their bedbugs, so it's best to fess up before they have a bigger problems to deal with.

Call an exterminator as soon as possible. You'll want to help them out by moving furniture away from the walls and clearing your home of any clutter. Any belongings you would rather not throw out should be stored in garbage bags and sealed tightly.

With the right bedbug protection, hopefully you'll be able to avoid having to go through the ordeal of removing them, but if it should happen it's best to have a solid plan of action ready.

Bedbug reports are most common during the months of July, August and September, and while you may be taking steps to ensure that your bed is free of the pests, have you thought about whether your resident furry friend is dealing with his own infestation?

Nobody loves a good nap more than a cat or dog, and chances are they spend a lot of time on your bed or couch, both of which are very common sites for bedbugs to make a home. It can be tough to tell whether they've been bitten, simply because combing through thick fur is time-consuming and makes it easy to miss bites.

Don't worry about your pet actually carrying bedbugs into your home, though – the insects don't particularly care for your dog's back. But that won't stop them from biting the poor guy. If you're concerned, you can find special mattress encasements designed to keep bedbugs from making their way into your box spring, which in turn will keep you and your favorite pet happy through these warm summer months.

As you take the preventative steps needed to ensure you don't have your own bedbug problem to deal with this summer, remember that it's a good idea to have a reputable and reliable exterminator's number just in case you should have to eliminate the pests. Unfortunately, the recent rash of bedbug infestations has led to the rise of a number of sub-par extermination services, so it's important to be diligent about who you decide to give your business to.

The best thing to do is to go online and exhaustively research the options available to you. Yelp is a great site for this sort of inquiry – simply type "exterminator" into the search bar and see exactly who's getting accolades and who you should avoid. Angie's List is a site designed specifically for household services, so be sure to check there as well.

Once you've compiled a short-list of potential exterminators, call each of them and ask about their specific experience and methodology in dealing with bedbugs. Eventually you should find on that jibes with what you want.

There's a great deal of information available online, and educating oneself on bedbugs and how to best deal with them is perhaps the most vital step a homeowner can take in preventing an infestation.

A number of cities throughout North America have launched bedbug hotlines specifically to provide information to curious locals. Though a bedbug infestation can pose significant problems, when armed with information, proper preventative measures can be taken to help ensure that the pests never make their way into your home.

Because of the growing number of bedbug infestations, finding information on them is easier than ever. Be diligent about reading up on them frequently so you know how to keep them at bay and prevent them from invading your home. By installing special mattress encasements, you can prevent bedbugs from making their way into your box spring. Maintaining a stable relative humidity and temperature can also go a long way in bedbug protection. Do your best to regularly inspect mattresses – especially the seams – as well as other pieces of furniture that may accommodate them.

Dust mites are microscopic eight-legged insects that feed off of dander left behind by humans and animals. Any household where more than one person or pet lives is almost guaranteed to have dust mites. In fact, a single mattress can house more than 100,000 of the pests.

So how do dust mites cause allergies? Well, it's not the bugs themselves. A single household can contain millions of the little guys, each producing more than 20 waste droppings a day. It's not the bugs, but rather small particles in their feces, that causes some people to have allergic reactions.

Since dust mites often live in bedding, you can buy special allergy mattress covers with incredibly small pores. This will prevent them from making their way into your box spring and becoming a problem down the line. It's virtually impossible to completely rid your house of dust entirely, so the best course of action against dust mites is to aggressively prevent them from finding any comfort in your home.

Now that summer is here, taking initiative and aggressively eliminating allergy triggers is the best line of defense in between you and a stuffy nose. Running a dehumidifier is a great way to keep allergens at bay, but there's a lot more you can do to decrease their presence in your home. Here are a few things you can take care of around the house to stay clearheaded throughout the season.

When showering, run an exhaust fan or keep a window open, and when you're done take a minute to wipe down the shower's walls. This will prevent a buildup of mildew, which can trigger allergic reactions.

When cooking, try using a range hood that ventilates outside. This will similarly prevent mold from building up and will make it much easier to keep your kitchen clean.

In the bedroom, put allergy mattress covers under your bedding to stop allergens from making their way in. You can also take advantage of special allergy-free pillows to ensure a restful night's sleep.

Although allergy experts across the country are now recommending that people looking for relief make it a point to eat locally-sourced honey, there are a number of other changes to your diet that you can also enact. Of course, there are foods you should avoid as well. Here's a quick breakdown of how you can shake things up to help take care of your allergies.

It sounds daunting, but try going easy on the dairy. While dairy doesn't actually cause your body to produce more phlegm, it makes what's already in there thicker and more irritating than normal, which you're really going to feel when those allergies start to kick in.

Raw garlic is filled with a chemical known as allicin, a sulfur compound that helps boost your immune system. It's also known to have a preventative effect on seasonal allergy symptoms, so try to work more garlic into your diet!

In addition to these changes in diet, try using allergy-free pillows when you go to bed at night. They'll prevent allergens from making their way into your bedding, which will help you enjoy a restful sleep.

Regardless of whether you have bedbugs, chances are you've heard of specialized mattress encasements that are available that can help prevent them from infesting a household. It may seem like a simple solution, but sometimes the best protection against the pests is a few simple steps that keep them at-bay. But how exactly do they work?

It's been said that bedbugs find sanctuary in beds about 70 percent of the time. It stands to reason, then, that eliminating this potential hiding spot will go a long way towards ensuring you don't have an infestation to deal with. It will also make inspections easier when you don't have to thoroughly check a mattress every month or so.

Slipping these encasements over a mattress is often enough to protect your box spring from becoming a family of bedbugs' new home. Because these bugs usually like to tuck away in their hiding spots, the covers make it more difficult for them to find a good place to go. If your house can't accommodate bedbugs, then they won't be sticking around for very long.

Allergy season is officially on, and for millions of Americans who suffer from itchy eyes and runny noses almost daily, there seems to be no relief in sight. If it feels like allergies have been particularly bad this month, it's not just your imagination. Across the nation, a lack of rain is causing grass pollen counts to rise, according to ABC affiliate KDRV in Oregon.

As we make the transition from tree season to grass season, times are tough for allergy sufferers. The news source says grass pollen counts are expected to continue to rise through the end of the month, which is certainly not welcome news for anyone already having a tough time sleeping at night.

While it may seem like a losing battle, protecting yourself from allergies at night is entirely possible. First off, be sure to close your window every night. Most pollen settles to the ground when the sun goes down, so you want to have your windows shut to keep it from blowing into your home. Additionally, you can use special mattress encasements to prevent allergens from making their way into your box spring, which will help you enjoy a restful and full night's sleep.

Some people simply aren't able to start their days without going outside for a jog. While the summertime affords plenty of opportunities to run around town, those who suffer from pollen allergies may be unable to deal with conditions long enough to get the workout they really want. If you are one of these people, fear not! There's a lot you can do to make things easier on yourself and your body.

First, you'll want to get outside at the right time. Pollen levels reach their peak around mid-afternoon, so try to get out either in the morning or around dusk to avoid having to deal with the worst conditions.

Check the weather, knowing that rain clears the air of pollen, while wind blows it out of trees and into the air. You'll also want to be diligent about washing off after you're done, because pollen can stick to your clothing pretty easily.

When you rest after a hard workout, do so on an allergy-free pillow to prevent any stray pollen from irritating your eyes and nose.