In the West, we almost had bed bugs eliminated through the use of powerful insecticides, such as DDT, until the environmentally-negative effects of DDT became known to us and its use was discontinued. These days, it is a constant struggle to find new weapons to use in what seems to be a never-ending battle against bed bugs, as the insects evolve resistance to pesticides fairly quickly. Despite enormous advances in the creation of new pesticides, bed bugs have again become epidemic in the United States. The only comfort we can take is that they aren't known vectors for any diseases.
For now, certain things remain effective, like heat treatments and enzyme-based insecticides. However, the cost of such treatments puts them out of reach for a lot of people who can't afford the thousands of dollars these treatments cost and there's nothing stopping the bugs from eventually coming back to bite you again in the future. So, repeatedly needing such treatments could become a serious financial drain for people who can't afford it, in addition to the cost of replacing infested furniture and clothes that had been discarded after bed bugs had been found on them.
Low-cost alternatives are often held out to people without high incomes. I felt so proud of myself when I discovered that 91% isopropyl alcohol kills them on contact, but my self-satisfaction was short-lived when I learned that it only kills the adults, while leaving their eggs unscathed. So, I was killing one generation while another was soon to hatch and plague me again. I poured boiling water over the eggs in an attempt to stop the next generation in its tracks, but this was impractical to use in various parts of my home. and I couldn't wash my clothes in water that hot because it would destroy them.
Buying cans of Hot Shots Bed Bug and Flea insect spray proved useless when the bed bugs proved completely immune to it. Raid Ant and Roach was a more effective killer, but I would have clouds of the spray all over my apartment, which was something I wasn't desperate enough to live with for a long time. I found numerous websites offering "guaranteed" methods for winning the fight against bed bugs, but with so many to choose from, I had no way to know which ones really work without trying them all and I didn't want to set myself up for more disappointments.
I finally found the answers I needed in a Facebook group run by a Canadian woman, Septina Samantha Smith. Like me, she tried everything to finally beat her bed bug infestation and met disappointment after disappointment. In the Bed Bug Support & Education Group, Septina provides a forum where people in circumstance similar to her's can ask questions and relate their own struggles against infestations. Members are free to ask questions, offer advice and relate their own experiences in fighting bed bugs. Sometimes, a new member will ask if a particular product works against bed bugs and it's almost guaranteed that someone in the group has already tried it and will say that it doesn't work.
Septina has taken a very scientific approach to the fight, trying various products and methods before finding one that 1) kills bed bugs and their eggs, 2) can be done by anyone and 3) doesn't cost too much. Members have stated that they had paid good money for a professional treatment, only for the infestation to return at a later time, so whatever method was developed would need to be inexpensive and easily done by a layperson.
Septina finally developed what she has called "The Persil Method©". She tried it herself and then asked members of the group to give it a try. Once the method itself was put into its final form, she posted the instructions in the group and you can see her accompanying video here:
Products like Eco Raider and Nature's Eradicator have received Septina's nod of approval, but they cost more ounce-for-ounce than the detergents I mentioned above. If you've got the cash, get Eco Raider and/or Nature's Eradicator. If you don't, the Persil Method© is the way to go.
So, here's what you should be doing next:
- subscribe to Septina's YouTube channel
- send a membership request to Bed Bug Support & Education Group
If you don't have a YouTube account, just watch the videos. But, if you don't have a Facebook account, you'll need to set one up to join the group. If you'd rather not set-up a Facebook account just to join one group, post your questions in my comments section below and I'll pass your questions to her when I get the chance, but it's better if you ask her yourself.
Septina developed The Persil Method© through trial and error, trying various products, finding what works and discarding what doesn't. She's put a lot of thought and hard work into it.