Have you stocked up on sprays and traps to eradicate bedbugs? Serious mistake: these products could harm your health. An update on those to eliminate and the right attitude to adopt in the event of an invasion by these pests.
When bedbugs appear, a wave of panic blows through the home. These small pests proliferate quickly and can, without appropriate treatment, infest an entire building. The solution is often to spread sprays throughout your apartment, in order to eradicate them. A serious mistake, according to our expert.
Beware of toxic products!
Traps, repellent plates, fumigators, sprays, powders… To eliminate bedbugs, the first instinct is often to obtain an anti-bedbug product. Bad idea. They can prove ineffective according to the Que Choisir association, or even dangerous: “Their mode of action differs, as does their price – some traps can exceed €60! But they have one thing in common, and not the best: according to our laboratory tests, they are mostly ineffective. At best, they will require several passes and a lot of patience“.
A TipsForWomens reader, impatient to get rid of pests, recently paid the price.
“I sprinkled my entire room with amorphous diatomaceous earth. Absolutely everywhere and without worrying about the risk of inhalation, without any mask. I had trusted people who claimed that amorphous diatomaceous earth was harmless (…). But with the breathing and coughing problems that gradually occurred, I began to ask myself serious questions. Obviously, there is a dissension between people who assure non-toxicity and others who affirm the opposite. The truth is probably that both are toxic, but amorphous is less so.“, he reveals, before continuing: “So I spent 10 days almost confined in a room filled with diatomaceous earth. I inhaled this soil several times when dusting it. Today I have a mostly wet cough, a taste of blood in my throat, difficulty breathing and pain all over the left side of my back and chest.”.
The risk of toxic pneumonia is real
For Dr Kierzek, this story, among many others, is dramatic, since it results from a lack of knowledge of the products.
“Breathing a toxic substance is catastrophic, especially if the contact time with it is long. The right attitude? Never stay in a room where a chemical solution has been dispersed. The risk of toxic pneumonia (lesional pneumonia) is real“.
For his part, entomologist Jean-Michel Berenger, interviewed by Slate, recalls that commercial products based on pyrethroids “maintain the resistance of bedbugs to insecticides“.
Worse still, they risk pushing them elsewhere.since they tend to rise, particularly in false ceilings from which they will wander towards neighboring homes“.
It is therefore better to put aside sprays and other marketed products and call a specialist.