Local News

Raleigh woman fights losing battle against bedbugs

Posted January 25, 2010 9:41 p.m. EST
Updated August 4, 2010 11:37 a.m. EDT

— Yolanda Young feels surrounded by creatures out for blood. She is so fearful that she sleeps with her lights on.

“I am frustrated. I am frantic,” Young said. She knew something was biting her, but wasn’t sure what.

Recently, Young took her 10-month old son Nathan to the pediatrician because he had several red marks on him.

Dr. Selam Bullock told Young the problem was bedbugs crawling around the dark corners of her home.

Bullock says judging by her waiting room, bedbugs are spreading in the Triangle.

“I kept seeing these kids coming in with these red welts on their bodies,” Bullock said.

Getting rid of the pests can be difficult. Young said her apartment has been sprayed twice for bedbugs but they are still around. She has also thrown out nearly all of her furniture.

“I ended up having to throw my couch away and I have to throw his (Nathan’s) bed away,” Young said.

But the bedbugs are still around and they are leaving tracks on her walls.

Entomologist Dr. Mike Wladvogel urges that people with bed-bug infestations turn to professionals to get rid of the pests. Bed bugs are resistant to certain pesticides, a problem that N.C. State is researching, he said.

Getting rid of an infestation doesn't come cheap. Most companies charge from $300 to $1,000 to treat the area.

Experts say complaints of bed bugs rose 50 percent in the Triangle last year.

“There is a significant problem,” Bullock said.

Bedbugs do not transmit infection, Bullock said, but people who scratch too much from the bites can cause an infection.