8 Surprising Reasons Why You Can’t Get Rid of Bed Bugs

Dealing with a bed bug infestation can be exhausting and frustrating. These pests are not only difficult to detect, but their ability to multiply quickly and spread makes them a nightmare to eradicate. 

In this article, we explore eight surprising reasons why bed bugs may be proving impossible to get rid of, shedding light on their unique challenges. If you are struggling to get rid of your bed bugs, enlist the help of a low-prep bed bug specialist company. 

So let’s talk about the surprising reasons why you can’t get rid of bed bugs.

1. Lack of Awareness

Reasons Why You Can't Get Rid of Bed Bugs - lack of awareness

Many people are not aware of how to properly identify bed bugs or underestimate how quickly an infestation can escalate. Since 30% or more of humans do not react to bed bugs, sometimes a person has no idea they are being bitten until they see a full-blown infestation.

  • Misidentification with other insects is common – Check out these bed bug pictures.
  • Not reacting to the bites
  • Underestimating the speed of spread

2. Resistance to Pesticides

bed bugs can have Resilience to Pesticides

Over time, bed bugs have developed resistance to various pesticides, making chemical treatments less effective. Learn  more about bed bug sprays with residual effects.

  • Developed resistance to commonly used insecticides
  • Can survive months without feeding
  • Requires stronger, more toxic chemicals to be effective

3. Hard to Detect

bed bugs are Hard to Detect

Bed bugs are small, nocturnal, and adept at hiding in tiny crevices, which makes detecting them before it becomes a major infestation challenging. Which is why we put together a guide on 19 bed bug hiding spots!

  • Can hide in mattress seams, furniture joints, and even behind wallpapers
  • Are often mistaken for other pests
  • Visible signs like bites take time to manifest

4. Neighboring Infestations

bed bugs can be hard to get rid of because of a neighbors infestation

Bed bugs can easily spread from one unit to another in multi-unit environments like apartment buildings, making it hard to completely eradicate them without coordinated effort. Learn more on how bed bugs start, if you suspect a problem!

  • Can travel through walls and floorboards
  • Infestations often require building-wide treatments
  • Individual efforts may be undermined by neighboring units

5. Use of Repellents

Use of Repellents can cause bed bug issues to worsen

Using repellents rather than insecticides can cause bed bugs to scatter to harder-to-reach areas, spreading the infestation and making it more difficult to treat. 

  • Repellents do not kill bed bugs, just displace them (which is why you might see bed bugs on the ceiling if you are repelling them)
  • Can cause bed bugs to spread to new areas within a home
  • Makes comprehensive extermination more challenging

6. Inadvertently Releasing Bed Bugs from Bagged Items

Inadvertently Releasing Bed Bugs from Bagged Items can make a bed bug problem worse

Bagging infested items without proper treatment can lead to re-infestation when the bed bugs are inadvertently released.

  • Bags can have small openings or tears
  • Bed bugs can survive a long time inside sealed bags
  • Items not treated properly before bagging remain sources of re-infestation

7. Unknowingly Visiting Infested Locations

Unknowingly Visiting Infested Locations

Visiting a location with an active bed bug infestation can lead to unknowingly transporting bed bugs back to one’s own home. Two unsuspecting places where we found bed bugs last week were a few chairs in a bank and a dialysis center. So you never know where they are.

  • Bed bugs can latch onto clothing and luggage
  • Difficult to detect in public places like hotels or theaters
  • Lack of visible signs until after bed bugs have been brought home

8. Air Drying Clothing

Air Drying Clothing

Relying on air drying rather than using a high heat dryer can fail to kill bed bugs, which are susceptible to high temperatures. Read up on bed bugs surviving a washing machine.

  • High heat (above 120°F) is effective at killing bed bugs
  • Air drying does not reach temperatures high enough to kill bed bugs
  • Eggs and larvae may survive if clothing is not heat treated