Food Drade Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is not harmful to humans, but is very lethal to bedbugs. Once the bedbugs come into contact with the treatment, they die since the treatment severely dehydrates their bodies. Before you begin the application process, you will have to steam clean or vacuum your box springs, carpets, mattresses and all upholstery.
In addition to this, you’ll want to vacuum your bed frame and other pieces of furniture paying special attention to screw holes, cracks and any other location where the bed bugs can hide. Remember to spray some DE on the bag of the vacuum cleaner bag before discarding its contents; this will wipe out all live bedbugs and eggs that may have survived.
Though DE is generally not harmful to humans, I found out, through online research, that it might irritate your lungs and mucous membranes. Hence, for safety purposes, always wear a dust mask and take time to read the safety precautions written on the product label. After vacuuming all the potential hiding places, it is now time to apply DE to these areas.
Use a powder duster or spray to target the cracks and holes, and a shaker to apply it larger areas and surfaces such as under the bed, the carpet, mattresses and box springs. Do not apply too much of the DE on these areas – a light covering will be enough to kill all bedbugs that crawl through it. Conversely, your floor and legs of your bed will need a heavier coat of the solution.
The diatomaceous earth kills all bedbugs in 10 to 14 days. Clean it up only when you are satisfied that all bedbugs have been exterminated. However, you might not want to wash away remove the applied on holes, crevices and cracks of surfaces, as it could safeguard your home from future infestations. The key here is to be very thorough and diligent and you can eventually use a combination of Diatomaceous Earth and heat treatments to naturally kill the bed bugs in your home.