Mind The Bedbugs Don’t Bite!

Bloodsucking bedbugs are making a comeback in Sweden. According to Swedish news agency TT 6 times as many cases of the bugs infesting Swedish houses were reported in 2008, compared to 2004.

The reason for the explosion in numbers is said to be increased tourism with more Swedes travelling to far-off destinations such as Asia, where the insects are more common, and bringing them back to Sweden in their luggage.

And the bedbugs are hard to get rid of, experts say. They can plant 200 eggs at a time, 4 to 5 times a day, and can hide for months and years between feeds. At night they then often creep out of mattresses, from behind wallpaper and furniture at night, and bite sleeping humans.

Magnus Bergsten, from exterminators Nomor, says the bedbugs don’t spread disease, but can cause soreness and swelling where they decided to take a drink.

The only way to get rid of them is by the use of chemicals, or by heat- or freeze-treating furniture, he says. He recommends tourists abroad to put suitcases on top of wardrobes, as bedbugs are poor climbers, and to put bags in saunas or freezers when they get home.