Health officials in Maryland are educating residents to help prevent a widespread infestation of bedbugs in Montgomery County.
Dr. Ulder Tillman, the county's health officer, met with members of the county council this morning to let them know what's going on with bedbugs.
"…[W]e've only had sporadic complaints that have come into our department about bedbugs, but they have been in a few nursing homes, even in a few hospitals and in some hotels, and obviously in some shelters, so it's something that is growing and becoming more of a concern," Tillman says.
Although county health officials have been keeping watch on infestations since 2007, the presence of this troubling insect in the county is not a reportable event like measles, for example.
Tillman says avoiding the little buggers is a matter of personal responsibility.
"You want to get a pest management person in to help you..and you have to be diligent about it, because these bedbugs can last a long time so one treatment alone is not going to do it," she says.
Tillman also suggest getting rid of clutter, vacuuming rugs and carpets regularly, and sealing cracks and crevices to remove hiding places.