Bed Bug–Proof Your Guest Bedroom

If you enjoy visitors and hosting guests, you likely don't want to give it up because you worry about bed bugs. Instead of sending everyone to a hotel, come up with a prevention plan before they arrive. The following tips can help you enjoy your guests without the fear of bed bugs.

Tip #1: Invest in the right covers and linens

Bed bug–proof mattress and pillow covers are available. You simply place the mattress, box spring, and pillows into the covers and zip them closed. Light colored linens are a good idea, too, since they will reveal the small blood speckles that accompany feeding bed bugs. Also, skip bed skirts. These tend to drag on the floor and provide a route for bed bugs to infest the rest of your home. Once the guests leave, wash all the linens and the covers to make sure no hitchhiking bugs remain. Generally, running linens and pillows through a hot dryer cycle is sufficient for killing any lingering bed bugs.

Tip #2: Choose the right bed frame

The primary goal is to prevent bed bugs from migrating throughout your home if a guest accidentally brings them with them. Choose a guest bed that has legs as opposed to a platform. Then, place a bed bug coaster beneath each leg. These coasters trap bed bugs so they can't spread beyond the bed area. It's also a good idea to choose a bed with an integrated headboard so you can place it a few inches away from the wall, so bed bugs can't travel from the bed to the wall.

Tip #3: Furnish with care

The other furniture in the room needs to be conducive to your guests' comfort without providing bed bug access to the rest of the home. Don't make a closet available to your guests; instead provide a free-standing clothes rack for hanging clothing. Then, place the feet of the rack in bed bug coasters. You may also want to do the same with a suitcase rack so that guests aren't tempted to place their suitcase on the floor. Bedside tables and other furniture should also have feet that can be placed in the coasters, and none of the furniture should be pushed up against a wall.

If you encounter an issue with bed bugs, contact a bed bug exterminator in your area. The more quickly you target the problem, the easier it is to get rid of the pests.