Family Bitten Over 300 Times on Disney Vacation

Imagine going on a dream family vacation, only to have it turn into a nightmare. This was the unfortunate experience for the Streble family from Kentucky, whose Disneyland Florida vacation was marred by an unexpected and unwelcome surprise: bedbugs.

The Streble Family’s Dream Vacation Turns Into a Nightmare

The Streble family had eagerly planned their 700-mile trip to Disneyland Florida, expecting a memorable and magical experience. Little did they know that their dream vacation would take an unexpected turn. Upon arriving at their hotel in Kissimmee, the family discovered that their daughter’s bed was infested with bedbugs. The consequences were severe, with their young daughter suffering from numerous insect bites. The family documented the evidence and sought medical attention, only to hear the shocking words from the doctor: this was the worst case of bedbugs he had ever seen.

The Impact of Bedbug Bites

Bedbug bites can have a significant impact on those unfortunate enough to encounter these pests. While not everyone has a skin reaction to bites, many experience itchy red bumps within 15 to 30 minutes of being bitten. These bites can last for several days, causing discomfort and irritation. Although bedbugs are not known to spread diseases, their presence can be distressing and lead to psychological distress.

Understanding Bedbugs: The Silent Intruders

To better understand the Streble family’s ordeal, it is essential to grasp the nature of bedbugs. Bedbugs are attracted to heat and carbon dioxide, making human blood their preferred source of nutrition. These nocturnal insects emerge from hiding places, such as mattresses, to feed on unsuspecting victims while they sleep. Their ability to hide in tiny cracks and crevices makes them difficult to detect.

Preventing Bedbug Infestations

Prevention is key when it comes to dealing with bedbugs. Here are some essential tips to keep in mind:

1. Thoroughly Inspect Hotel Rooms

When checking into a hotel, it’s crucial to inspect the room carefully. Start by examining the mattress, paying close attention to the seams, edges, and corners. Look for any signs of bedbugs, such as live bugs, shed skins, or dark spots of excrement. Additionally, inspect upholstered furniture, curtains, and baseboards for any signs of infestation.

2. Keep Luggage Elevated

To minimize the risk of transporting bedbugs back home, it’s advisable to keep luggage elevated off the floor. Use luggage racks or place suitcases on hard surfaces, such as tile or hardwood floors. Avoid placing luggage on beds or upholstered furniture.

3. Wash and Dry Clothes on High Heat

After returning from a trip, immediately wash and dry all clothing on high heat. The high temperatures will kill any potential bedbugs or their eggs that may have hitched a ride on your clothes.

4. Use Protective Encasements

Invest in protective encasements for your mattresses and box springs. These encasements create a barrier, preventing bedbugs from infesting your sleeping area. Look for encasements designed specifically for bedbugs, as they should be bite-proof and have a zipper that fully encloses the mattress.

Dealing with a Bedbug Infestation

Despite taking precautions, bedbug infestations can still occur. If you suspect that you have a bedbug problem, it’s crucial to take immediate action. Here’s what you should do:

1. Capture and Identify Bedbugs

If you encounter bedbugs in your home, try to capture a few specimens for identification. Place the bugs in a sealed container or a Ziploc bag to prevent them from escaping. Proper identification will help in determining the best course of action.

2. Contact Professional Pest Control

Bedbug infestations are notoriously difficult to eradicate, requiring the expertise of professional pest control services. Contact a reputable pest control company specializing in bedbug removal. They will assess the extent of the infestation and develop a customized treatment plan to eliminate the pests.

3. Vacuum Thoroughly

In conjunction with professional treatment, it’s important to vacuum your home thoroughly. Pay close attention to areas where bedbugs may hide, such as mattresses, upholstered furniture, and cracks in the walls or floors.

4. Launder Infested Items

Wash and dry infested clothing, bedding, and curtains on high heat. This will help eliminate any bedbugs or eggs that may be present. If an item cannot be washed, consider placing it in a sealed plastic bag and leaving it in direct sunlight for several days.

The Long-Term Effects of Bedbug Infestations

While dealing with a bedbug infestation is undoubtedly stressful, it’s important to address the long-term effects as well. Beyond the physical discomfort of bites, individuals may experience psychological distress, including anxiety and insomnia. Seeking support from professionals, such as therapists or support groups, can be beneficial in coping with the emotional aftermath of a bedbug infestation.


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