How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs in a Mattress

Dealing with bed bugs in a mattress can be a frustrating and challenging experience. There is nothing worse than sleeping and knowing tiny bugs crawl into bed with you to suck your blood.

This is very creepy and really gross once you start thinking about it. How to get rid of bed bugs in a mattress is what we will review today, to help you to get rid of bed bugs quickly.

You need to know if you have bed bugs before you can create a plan of attack to get rid of them. There are several ways to see if you have bed bugs in your bedroom and on your mattress.

We will look at how to spot the signs that bed bugs have invaded your home and review the best ways to get rid of them.

Signs of Bed Bugs in a Mattress

Group of bedbugs on the matress cloth macro. Disgusting blood-sucking insects. Adult insects, larvae and eggs. Traces of vital activity of the insects.

1) Dark Spots and Droppings

Bed bugs poop after drinking blood, the poop looks like little flecks of pepper which you can find in the seams of the mattress, walls, trim, or anywhere they congregate.  

You will want to inspect your mattress thoroughly, focusing on the seams and corners, where bed bugs tend to hide.

2) Live Bed Bugs

The existence of live bed bugs is a clear indication of an infestation. Bed bugs are very small, with a flat body, that is oval-shaped, and they look reddish-brown in appearance.

Look for them in crevices, folds, and seams of your mattress, as well as behind headboards, behind picture frames, and inside box springs.

3) Itchy Welts and Bites

If you’re waking up with itchy welts or bites on your skin, this could be a sign of bed bugs. Bed bug bites are often found in clusters or straight lines, usually on uncovered areas of the skin, such as the legs, torso, back, neck, or arms.

Remember, though, that not everyone reacts to bed bug bites – some people may not exhibit any visible bite signs.

4) Clusters and Reddish-Brown Stains

Another sign of bed bugs in your mattress is the presence of clusters of bed bugs, their eggs, nymphs, or shed skins.

You may also notice reddish-brown stains resulting from crushed bugs or their excrement. These stains can be found on sheets, pillowcases, and the mattress itself.

5) Unpleasant Odor

Bed bugs release a distinctive, musty odor caused by their scent glands. If you notice a bad smell in your bedroom, particularly around your mattress, it could indicate a bed bug infestation.

Checking for and addressing these signs can help you identify and tackle a bed bug infestation in your mattress and your home.

By detecting and killing the bed bugs early on, you’ll be better equipped to prevent further infestations and maintain a comfortable, bug-free sleeping environment.

I do remember my wife calling for me one night and I went downstairs to see what she was freaking out about. She showed me a bug she found on the couch, and it was a bed bug.

I started spraying and treating that area that night and we blocked off that area for two weeks. That was the only bed bug we found, and the quick spraying and quarantine stop them from spreading.

Inspecting for Bed Bugs

1) Using a Flashlight

To inspect for bed bugs, grab a flashlight and turn off any other sources of light. Bed bugs tend to hide in dark places, and a flashlight will help you see them better.

Shine the light in all corners and crevices of the mattress, especially where seams and folds are present. Look for an actual live bed bug, their translucent eggshells, or any reddish-brown stains, which all indicate the presence of bed bugs.

2) Checking Upholstered Furniture and Linens

After examining your mattress, move on to upholstered furniture and linens. This includes sofas, chairs, and curtains, along with bed sheets and pillowcases.

Take the flashlight and carefully inspect the seams, folds, and crevices of these items. Just like with the mattress, you’re looking for the same signs of bed bugs.

3) Identifying Hiding Spots

Bed bugs are known for their expert hiding abilities. They love to squeeze into tight spaces and will take advantage of any nook or cranny available. Be sure to check under mattress tags, the plastic around the box springs’ edges, and any other spots with seams or folds.

Also, keep in mind that bed bugs might not confine themselves to your bedding – they can hide in nearby furniture, baseboards, and electrical outlets.

Eliminating Bed Bugs from a Mattress

I. Vacuuming the Mattress

First, you need to vacuum your mattress thoroughly. Use your vacuum cleaner’s hose attachment for the most effective results.

Avoid using a brush, as bed bugs can stick to the bristles. You need to check under the seams, where bed bugs might be hiding. The other thing you can do is lift your mattress on its sides to vacuum underneath it.

II. Using a Steamer

After vacuuming, using a steamer is an effective method to kill bed bugs and their eggs. Heat the steamer to at least 212°F (100°C) and slowly apply steam to all sides of the mattress, especially seams and crevices.

Be careful not to soak your mattress, as too much moisture may cause mold or mildew issues.

III. Applying Insecticides and Pesticides

Incorporating insecticides and pesticides can help with bed bug removal. Before using any insecticides, follow the instructions carefully and do what the directions tell you to do.

You need to make sure that the insecticide you are using is allowed to be used on a mattress or furniture. You should not be spraying insecticide on your mattress if the product label says it is not to be used for that purpose.

Apply the product to all infested areas, as directed by the manufacturer. Always ensure your space is well-ventilated when using chemicals.

Best Insecticide

Temprid FX

Temprid bed bugs
  • Quick knockdown
  • Long-lasting control
  • Broad-spectrum insecticide
  • Kills bed bugs
  • Concentrate spray
Best IGR

Gentrol Aerosol

  • Disrupts development
  • Growth regulator
  • Stop reproduction
  • Hard-to-reach areas
  • Works on bed bugs

IV. Encasing the Mattress

To prevent further infestation, consider using a mattress encasement or mattress protector. These products are specifically designed to keep bed bugs from getting into or getting out of your mattress.

Make sure to choose a product specifically labeled for bed bug protection and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for installation.

I have rental properties and when my tenants get bed bugs this is the first thing, I tell them to buy.

Our Pick

Healthy Sleep Mattress Encasement

Keep your sleeping quarters bug-free with the Healthy Sleep Bed Bug Encasement!

For peace of mind, it boasts a 10-year manufacturer warranty and is made from durable, yet soft waterproof materials – making sure bed bugs don’t get in while still providing comfortable protection.

V. Laundering Clothing and Bedding

To eliminate bed bugs from your clothing and bedding, place them in the washing machine with the usual amount of laundry detergent.

Wash everything using the hottest wash cycle, then transfer them to the dryer and dry them on high heat to kill all bed bugs. I would run everything through the washer and dryer to kill the bed bugs.

Then you need to put the clothes you washed in a plastic bag to keep bed bugs from hiding there again. You can put the sheets back on the bed and you will just have to run them through the laundry more frequently until the bed bugs are gone.

Seeking Pest Control Company Help

Even though you can follow some steps to eliminate bed bugs on your own, sometimes, seeking professional help might be necessary.

If the infestation is too extensive or difficult to handle, hiring an exterminator will provide a more effective and thorough solution to your bed bug problem.

Hiring an Exterminator

When choosing an exterminator, make sure to consider their experience and expertise in dealing with bed bugs. It’s essential to ask for references and verify if they are licensed and certified.

Also, inquire about their treatment methods and the number of visits required to effectively get rid of bed bugs from your mattress.

Remember a few key aspects when hiring a professional to handle the bed bug issue:

  • Experience: Opt for professionals specializing in bed bug extermination and having a proven track record of successful treatments.
  • Treatment Methods: Effective exterminators will likely use multiple methods such as heat treatments, chemical treatments, and vacuuming to ensure that all bed bugs and their eggs are eradicated from your mattress.
  • Follow-Up Visits: Bed bugs are stubborn pests, and a single treatment may not eliminate them. Choose an exterminator who offers follow-up visits to ensure the problem is fully resolved.

Here is a resource to help you find a local exterminator to help get rid of the bed bugs.

Don’t hesitate to ask questions throughout the process and ensure you understand their treatment plan. It is also crucial to follow any post-treatment instructions provided by your exterminator, as this can help prevent a recurrence of bed bugs in your mattress.


In your journey to eradicate bed bugs from your mattress, it is essential to be thorough and patient. First, remove clutter and wash all your bedding materials, ensuring they are dried at high heat. Cleaning the mattress is vital; use a stiff brush to dislodge hidden bed bugs and eggs.

Following the brushing, vacuum the mattress meticulously, focusing on seams and other hiding spots. Be sure to clean the surrounding area too, as bed bugs might be lurking nearby. After vacuuming, seal the waste in a plastic bag and dispose of it outside.

Remember, if the infestation is severe or persistent, it might be a good idea to call in professional help. Pest control experts have the expertise and tools to effectively eliminate bed bugs and restore your peace of mind.

Similar Posts