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Don't Let the Bed Bugs Bite!

Although they are not known to transmit disease, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers them a public health issue. Bed bug bites can cause mild to severe allergic reactions and infections. The EPA also warns of anxiety, insomnia and other mental health issues in people who live with bedbugs.

That's why it's especially important to make sure you don't bring bedbugs home from your vacation as an unwanted souvenir. Make sure your luggage is properly sealed so bedbugs can't hide inside, and be sure to look for mentions of bed bug problems in reviews of the hotel you'll be staying at. When you arrive at your destination, do a quick once-over of your room with a flashlight to make sure everything's clear, and keep your luggage off the ground.

But how do you know if you even have a bed bug problem? In addition to the seams of beds, bedbugs can hid in sofas, electrical outlets and even under loose wallpaper. Contrary to popular belief, they can be seen with the naked eye, and usually appear as small brown dots, around the size of an apple seed, clustered together.

Also look for the signs they leave behind. Their excrement resembles small, black pepper flakes, and is a sure sign bedbugs are near. They can also lay small, pale yellow eggs and leave rust-red stains on surfaces when crushed.

There are basic precautions you can take to avoid bed bug infestations, such as washing your clothes in hot water. However, if there's a full infestation, you're better off calling in a professional to deal with the problem. the bugman offers a no-cost inspection, and uses state-of-the-art technology to eliminate bedbugs from homes.

Exercising the proper precautions, and taking action if necessary, will keep you dreaming sweetly on your next vacation.

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