CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH (WOIO) - Health officials say bed bugs are making their way into more homes. They're not just in hotel rooms, they can be in movie theatres or public seating anywhere even on buses.
"We're having such a unique problem here in Cleveland we haven't seen for years and years," said Rick Novickis.
Novickis deals with bed bug issues at the Cuyahoga County Board of Health. He says the critters don't just get here on planes, but also right up I-71.
"The bed bug issue in a sense moved up the highway into Ohio through Cincinnati, and Columbus. We proactively saw Cleveland was next."
One way they get into your house according to experts is on your luggage. Many put their suitcases on beds or sofas in hotel rooms. The bugs latch on and jump off in homes everywhere.
"The idea is to educate people to look for bed bugs, to identify them to know what they're dealing with so that way we can respond accordingly" said Novickis.
The Cuyahoga County bed bug task force hosted a conference. The goal is to educate the public which will help get rid of the bugs. To do that many are turning to mans best friend to even know if they have a problem. K-9's can be a very affective tool according to Gary Brober of Bed Bug Dog Inspections.
"There's no reason for this dog not to be one hundred percent accurate and tell you if there's a bed bug there or no bedbugs" said Brober.
There are other solutions as well including dish like traps that go under your bed's legs. The bugs get stuck inside as they do in mattress bags. They can't penetrate the material and eventually starve because they cant get to you or your blood. Some turn to chemical pesticides and there's environmentally friendly ones as well.
Some companies kill them by turning up the heat in your house to over 130 degrees. Health officials say educating yourself not to bring them home in the first place is the best defense. You can lean more on combating a bed bug problem by clicking onto the link in our seen on section.