Bed Bug Conference Takes Over Northeast Ohio

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The disgusting house guests that just won't leave continue to multiply in Cuyahoga County.

In fact, the local bed bug problem is doubling each year, said Rick Novickis, supervisor of Environmental Health Programs for the Cuyahoga County Board of Health.

"Bed bugs are a tough one. They are very difficult to control," Novickis said.

The Second Annual Cuyahoga County Bed Bug Task Force Conference was held in Middleburg Heights Thursday.

The fact that the county not only has a Bed Bug Task Force, but now holds yearly conferences about them speaks to the severity of the problem.

Anywhere there is a lot of daily foot traffic, there is a good chance a bed bug, or a bed bug egg, is in the building.

"Any place that you congregate a lot of people together at one point at one time, there's a very good percentage that somebody is coming from an environment that might have bed bugs," Novickis said.

Why so many?

Bug bugs are not easy, or cheap, to get rid of.

A professional bed bug killer charges between $600 for a small apartment to several thousand dollars for a home.

"In many places, the tenants or homeowners can't afford to have the problem taken care of," Jeff Saltzman, of Rose Pest Solutions, said.

Saltzman believes that is one reason why the bed bug problem is multiplying.

"Right now, the problems spreads," Saltzman said.

Some pest control companies will work with people with an infested home by offering a payment plan.

"Certainly cost is a concern to a lot of people but the cost of doing nothing is much greater," Shawn Whiteman of Eco-Treat said.