First off call a professional. I have been dealing with this pest for years and there is a learning curve for them. There are three popular methods right now for controlling them. Chemical, heat, and a combination of the two.
Bed Bug Chemical Treatment
Treating Bed Bugs with chemicals has been around for a long time. DDT may be a thing of the past but chemical applications are still popular. When approaching a treatment with chemicals you need to do four things. Flush them out, Knock them down, put down some residual and regulate their growth. The advantages to this style treatment are it’s cheaper than heat treating and you have residual when done. The disadvantages are higher chemical exposure, longer down times because chemicals need time to be effective and some Bed Bugs are building a resistance to pesticides.
Bed Bug Heat Treatment
Heat treating is one of the new methods that companies are turning to for many reasons. Bed Bugs, like many other bugs, die rather quickly once they reach a certain temperature. The heat kills all life stages of the insect. The advantages of heat are no chemical exposure, shorter down times for infested rooms and quicker kill than pesticide once optimum temperature is reached. The disadvantages are more expensive than a chemical treatment and no residual left behind.
Heat and Chemical Combo Treatment
This method here seems to be the best of both worlds. Using pesticides in the cracks, crevices and lower room surfaces to give you some residual protection in the room. Then bring the room up to temperature with the heating units to kill off the Bed Bug population. The advantages are reduced chemical exposure, shorter down times and residual protection. The only disadvantage to this method is if you are a bed bug.
In summary, bed bugs are here and they are going to be a problem for a while. Educating yourself on them will help understand what you’re up against if they ever make it into your home. Call a professional and ask questions. The only dumb question is the one never asked.