Just thinking about bed bugs on your clothing is enough to make you itch, isn't it? It is a frightening thought. Unfortunately, it could happen to you. If you travel and stay in a hotel room that is infested with bed bugs, you could potentially have some of the pests hitchhiking a ride in your luggage -- or directly on the clothes you are wearing -- and they could be traveling with you to your new home. In addition, these days, bed bugs can potentially be found wherever people are. So bed bugs have been spotted in department stores, libraries, subways, and even places like hospitals and nursing homes have experienced bed bug infestations. That means that you could end up with bed bugs on your clothing. The same could happen if your home needs to be treated for bed bugs. At any rate, while you probably do not have to worry about bed bugs on your clothing in an ordinary day, it can be a real concern if you spent time in a place where you may have come in contact with bed bugs. And when it comes to traveling, it may be a good idea to treat your clothing as if they potentially were infested with bed bugs. To that end, here are some bed bug prevention tips to keep them off your clothing: How to get bed bugs off clothing If you travel, or have been in a place where you suspect bed bugs might be, make sure to treat your clothing by following these tips:
- If you are unpacking, do so in a garage or separate area from your bedroom. It is also best to unpack in an area with a floor, as opposed to a carpet. This way, bed bugs will be easier to find.
- Put the clothing in a sealed plastic bag -- this will keep the bed bugs in the bag, instead of all over your house. If you have luggage, try to place that in a sealed bag as well.
- Wash the clothing in hot water, and then dry in the dryer for at least 20 minutes on high heat. If your clothing is not dirty, you can just use the dryer to help kill any bed bugs.
- High heat in the dryer will help eliminate the bed bugs on your clothing. So will dry cleaning the items. However, you do not want to bring your clothing to the dry cleaner without explaining the situation first; otherwise, they could be infested with bed bugs because of your clothing there.
Check for bed bugs when buying vintage or used clothing Be careful with purchasing second-hand clothing, especially things at a garage sale. You have no idea where the clothing has been, which means it could be hiding bed bugs! If you do insist on buying used clothing, thoroughly inspect the clothing firsthand, then follow the above instructions to help eliminate any bed bugs that may be lurking. Worrying about bed bugs on vintage clothing is a big concern these days. In a recent class at the Fashion Institute of Technology called "Is Vintage for You?," a student asked the question, according to the New York Times: "Have you ever experienced any issues with bedbugs?" Bridgett Artise, the instructor, told the Times: "One girl in particular in the class had an issue." The student said, "'I had a problem with a jacket.' She said they were in the lining, so it was hard to detect that the bed bugs were even there." Artise told the Times: "I only worry about newbies, new vintage shoppers. People like myself already know the telltale signs, and what to do." It is essential if you are going to buy used clothing or even used furniture that you learn as much as you can about the characteristics and different ways to identify bed bugs. Knowing what you are looking for is half the battle in preventing bed bugs in your home. And keep in mind that bed bugs don't discriminate -- they can also show up at high-end clothing stores as well as used clothing stores. So if you have any concerns about bed bugs and clothing, follow our bed bug prevention tips to help to keep them out for good.