Almost everyone has had to deal with a pest problem at some point in their life. Unfortunately, pest control is a little-understood subject, so many people just resort to tossing a random variety of traps, baits, and poisons around their house. In order to actually get rid of an infestation, it is important to take a more logical and targeted approach. Here is everything you need to know about how pest control works.
How to Tell If You Need Pest Control
Normally, you do not need to call pest control the instant you see a single bug or rodent, so in most cases, it is only required if you are noticing a significant number of pests. For many people, this means that you need pest control if you are seeing at least a few of the same amount of bug each week.
However, seeing just one of a bug that is very harmful and often lives with other members of its species may be a sign that you need pest control. You may just see one or two termites, bedbugs, ants or roaches, but these pests are very good at hiding and multiply quickly. Many pest control companies will examine your home to see whether or not you have a true infestation. If you see a bug and are not sure if it is a sign of a harmful infestation, you can catch it and ask a pest control expert to identify the pest for you.
The Different Types of Pest Control
Modern pest control companies mostly use tried and true techniques that are designed to get rid of common household pests. Depending on the type of infestation you are dealing with, these methods have varying amounts of success. A good pest control company should find a method that works for your individual situation instead of just spraying pesticide everywhere. These are a few of the most common pest control types:
- Poisoned bait that is eaten by pests
- Traps to catch larger pests
- Liquid pesticides to kill large amounts of small pests
- Fumigation methods that seal a structure before introducing pesticides as a gas
- Repellents designed to keep pests away from certain locations.
Picking a Pest Control Company That Is Right for You
A lot of homeowners make the mistake of just picking the cheapest pest control company in their area. Unfortunately, there is not a lot of regulation in the industry, so some companies may not be properly licensed or educated. This can lead to health problems if dangerous pesticides are used improperly.
Try to avoid companies that use high pressure sales tactics, claim an infestation exists without proof, or immediately recommend the most invasive and expensive treatments. You can contact the Department of Agriculture to determine if a company is properly licensed and in good legal standing. Choosing a reputable pest control company will ensure that your household pests are removed without damaging your health, home, or wallet.
What to Do During the Pest Control Process
If your home is being treated for pests, you can do a few things to ensure that the whole process goes smoothly. After any sort of interior treatment, you should open windows and doors to ventilate the home. During fumigation processes, you will need to find another place to stay until the exterminator allows you back in. Also talk to your exterminator about how the products work to make sure that you do not remove pesticides while cleaning or vacuuming your house.
The Effect of Pest Control on Your Health
Though pests can cause a lot of health problems with their waste products, keep in mind that certain methods of pest control can also harm human health. Pesticides that are designed to kill animals may not kill humans immediately, but they can cause health issues in the long run. People who are pregnant, have asthma, have allergies, or have compromised immune systems may need to avoid pest control methods that rely on poison or pesticides. Families with young children often need to put poisoned baits in areas out of the reach of a child, because young children may mistakenly eat these baits.
If you are concerned about health effects, you can ask to see a list of side effects before agreeing to a pest control method. In all cases, it is necessary to properly handle and apply pest control products, and homes should be thoroughly ventilated before residents return.
Pest Control and Pest Prevention Options
Unfortunately, it is possible for pests to return even after an infestation has been removed. Ants are particularly hard to get rid of because there are so many ant colonies in most areas. If you regularly suffer from common household pests, it may be wise to consider a regular service contract. Having annual or even monthly treatments can lower the cost of your pest control and help to keep your home from being overwhelmed with pests.
Some pest control companies also provide prevention treatments to ensure that people’s homes remain pest free. Common prevention methods employed by pest control companies include sealing doors and windows that bugs can crawl through, removing plants that are infected with insects, and treating potential breeding grounds of pests.