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Does Baking Soda Kill Bed Bugs?

While baking soda is a common household cleaning product, there isn’t any evidence that shows it’s effective against bed bugs. Many people believe baking soda can dehydrate the insects, but this is often a temporary solution that does little to treat an infestation. 

Baking soda is not shown to be effective, but people often perform the treatment using these steps:

  • Sprinkle baking soda on and around the mattress
  • After a few days, vacuum the baking soda
  • Repeat the process
Hand holding bowl of baking soda

How Does Baking Soda Affect Bed Bugs?

Baking soda is said to dehydrate bed bugs by absorbing the thick fluids on their shells and eggs. Some people also say that baking soda granules can cut into a bed bug’s exoskeleton and lead to internal bleeding. This process supposedly kills them off or prevents them from breeding, but in reality, it doesn’t have much of an effect on the insects.

At-Home Remedies for Bed Bugs

Baking soda is just one of many DIY bed bug remedies on the Internet. Though baking soda itself isn’t particularly effective, there are some other techniques that many people believe in:

  • Washing clothes at high temperatures
  • Using rubbing alcohol or tea tree
  • Sprinkling diatomaceous earth around the mattress

Some of these tips could help you deter bed bugs, but if you already have an infestation, they won’t stop the insects from feeding on you. It’s always best to partner with a professional if you have a bed bug problem. 

One of the biggest struggles with DIY bed bug treatments is that these pests can go for months without feeding. Even if you can slow their activity down for a few weeks, the infestation may resurface within a short period of time—and it may have spread to other parts of the house, making it even harder to get rid of. 

If you have bed bugs, the best course of action is to call a professional exterminator who has the tools and expertise to eliminate the insects once and for all.

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