Also referred to as assassin bugs, these blood-sucking insects are a troublesome lot wherever they decide to reside. However, eliminating these bugs is not as difficult as it seems. The following HomeQuicks article discusses how to get rid of kissing bugs.
Did You Know?
These insects, that are around 1 to 3 cm long, are christened as kissing bugs since they tend to bite their sleeping victims near the mouth.
When kissing bugs are camping in your house, it is very difficult to get some quality sleep. Thanks to their blood-sucking ability, they are sure to create a nuisance and give a harrowing night to their hosts. Moreover their feces carry Trypanosoma cruzi, a protozoan known to cause Chagas disease―a condition that is typically marked by swelling at the site of bite, rash, fever, body aches, and swollen lymph nodes. Considering the health risks linked to their association with homes, getting rid of these kissing bugs at the earliest should be your top priority.
Eliminating Kissing Bugs
Vacuum the Area
Thoroughly vacuuming your home can contribute immensely in getting rid of kissing bugs. You need to vacuum all the possible areas that include mattresses, pillows, carpets, floors, drawers, bed frames and other furniture items. When vacuuming, do make it a point to get rid of rat nests (if any) that are known to attract these bugs. Keeping the surrounding clean can certainly discourage these pets from infesting your home. So make sure your house is clutter-free to keep these insects out of your sight.
Mop the Floor
Household bleach can prove lethal for kissing bugs. Hence, mopping your floor with bleach-water solution can also help to exterminate these bugs. However, if you are not comfortable using household bleach, go for a steam mop to eliminate these pests. You can also steam clean all the surfaces and cracks. Steam cleaning devices generate heat, which these insects find difficult to withstand.
Use the Right Product
Well, using the right insecticide or bug spray can go a long way in keeping these bugs out of your house. Look for products that do not emanate a strong odor but at the same time are effective in destroying the pests. Products like Phantom Aerosal spray are practically odorless, and moreover, work against these notoriously difficult pest. A pyrethroid insecticide spray can be deadly against these bugs.
Using home insect foggers, also referred to as bug bombs or fleas bombs that contain active ingredients like tralomethrin or pyrethrins, may also contribute in eradicating these insects. Whichever product you choose, make sure the windows are all open and also ensure that you spray all the infested areas of your house including cracks and crevices.
Pyrethrin, which is similar to pyrethroid, is a powerful natural insecticide. It has been used all over the world to control infestation of a variety of insects including kissing bugs. However, when used in lower concentrations, pyrethrin has shown insect repellent properties. So you can use it in small amounts to get rid of these bugs. Generally, an insecticide formulation containing 2% concentration of pyrethrin demonstrates effective repellent activity.
Even after getting rid of kissing bugs, your house may get re-infested with these insects, if you do not implement the following preventive steps:
- Firstly, it is necessary to prevent these bug from re-entering your home. For this, use sealants such as caulk and foam to close (seal) all the cracks and gaps in your home. So check all the nooks and crannies in your house and make sure they are sealed completely. When done properly, it can be extremely difficult for these bugs to take refuge in your home.
- Installing insect screens is yet another way to protect your house from a kissing bug infestation. Insect screen protection that includes window screen and door screen can immensely contribute in preventing those bugs from crawling into your home.
- Like your house, you also need to keep your backyard clean. Get rid of dead leaves or other garden debris as any clutter in your yard can prove to be a haven for bugs and insects. In short, ensure that garbage or trash is disposed off on a daily basis. Also, if you have a lawn, make sure it is trimmed on a regular basis so that these insects do not hide in overgrown grass.
- Hanging a mosquito net over your sleeping area can also prevent these insects from biting you, thereby ensuring a sound and a bug-free sleep.
On the whole, calling an exterminator may not be necessary if you follow these remedies to the T. However, in case these pest control treatment options do not work, seek professional help.