From inexpensive motels to the finest hotels, bed bugs infestations are becoming a serious problem for the hospitality industry. These tiny bloodsucking parasites can damage a hotelâ€™s reputation and prompt lawsuits from guests who are bitten while sleeping. Pest control companies have reported a sharp increase in the number of bed bug-related calls coming from hotels and motels over the past year.
Bed bugs are transient in nature and travel about in luggage, furniture, and clothing. This makes any hotel or motel a potential home for the pests and, once they are ensconced, they are extremely difficult to eradicate completely. Some establishments opt for an exterminator only. Others take a more drastic approach by first stripping infested rooms of all furniture, mattresses, pillows, carpeting, and even picture frames before calling in the exterminator.
The resurgence in bed bug infestations may be linked to the reduction in the use of powerful pesticides like DDT which was banned in the 1960s and the use of narrow spectrum products which target only specific pests thereby allowing others to survive. Although they can be quite disgusting and a source of itchy ugly welts, bed bugs have not been shown to be dangerous or to transmit any serious diseases.