I’m getting ready to take a trip and stay in two different hotels. Bed bugs won’t stop skittering through my mind. What’s a traveler to do?
Did you know there is a Bed Bug Registry? Yes, the little critters sign up for the cool gifts they want for wedding presents. Not really. It lists places where bed bugs have been reported. One of my hotels has a clean bill of health while the other one’s history is a bit murkier.
So, what can I do to make sure my hotel room isn’t infested?
WebMD.com, my go-to health advice site, says bed bugs are more of a nuisance than a health hazard, but you still don’t want them around. They do like to take up residence in beds, but they can also be found in picture frames, headboards, upholstered furniture, and baseboards.
The good news is most hotels are not invested and you don’t have anything to worry about. To make sure:
- Place your suitcase off the ground on the luggage holder provided
- Leave it zipped unless you are taking an item out or putting one back in
- Pull back the blankets, sheets and mattress pad, looking for dark spots (bug feces) and if you find something, ask for a new room – if it’s dark, use a flashlight
- Look for blood spots or live insects in the seams, cracks, and crevices of the mattress, box spring, and other furniture
- Upon returning home, keep your luggage in an isolated area and wash all your clothes in hot water and a use a hot dryer to avoid bringing the bugs into your home
Here’s an article written by Doug Brown of the Denver Post, which goes into the bed bug problem in depth – http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/travel/2011790456_trbedbugs09.html
Hopefully, we’ll all sleep tight now and not wake up to any kind of bites.