Bed bugs are small parasites that are usually found in your mattress. While you sleep, they will bite you, injecting an anti-clotting agent into you. In the morning, you may find that you have small, swollen areas which are hard to the touch. The spots are usually red and irritated as well. Even though bed bugs are not known to carry diseases, their presence can be disturbing and annoying. Although extreme infestations should be treated by a professional exterminator, minor infestations can be treated by a few cleaning methods.
Remove all bedding from your bed. This includes the sheets, blankets, pillows and pillowcases, bed skirt and mattress pads. Wash all bedding in your washing machine using hot water and your usual laundry detergent. Machine dry as well on high heat. The heat and the detergent will help kill any bed bugs or their eggs that are on the bedding.
Separate the mattress from the box springs. Bed bugs can hide between the two pieces. Use the upholstery attachment of your vacuum to clean all sides of the mattress and box spring. This not only removes any bed bugs and their eggs, but also removes the dead skin cells your body sloughs off at night. Dead skin cells can attract bed bugs.
Use a light source to illuminate the inside of your box spring. You can use a flashlight or a lamp. Hold the light source up to the underside of your box spring and look for bed bugs. If you see bed bugs through the covering, use a knife to cut it open and vacuum out the inside of your box spring using your vacuum's crevice tool.
Put your cleaned bed back together, using your clean bedding.
Wash all linens, clothing and stuffed animals in the home using the same method as in Step 1. Bed bugs can live in things other than your mattress, such as hampers, suitcases and other furniture. Remove excess clutter from your home to help reduce hiding places.
Vacuum your home thoroughly, including under and behind all furniture, inside closets and inside drawers of dressers.
Dispose of the contents of your vacuum cleaner in a sealed bag. Dispose of the bag in a sealed trash can outside.