Ask A Broadsheet Reader



City Renter writes:

I am renting in Dublin 8, I can’t afford to move. Basically, I’m convinced my bed has some bed bugs. I say this because I sometimes wake up with bites and because I have twice seen a small bug in my bed this week.

Is it possible to live side by side with bed bugs? I’m serious. Does anyone have any tips?


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30 thoughts on “Ask A Broadsheet Reader

  1. postmanpat

    I don’t officially live in my house (I can’t even use it as my tax address) ? Are you registered as “homeless” like a lot of couch surfers do?

    1. Owen C

      If you don’t officially live in the house, you don’t officially have a landlord, so its not surprising he won’t do anything about it.

      Genuine suggestion – buy a new cheap mattress. They’re not horrifically expensive. 100 quid for a single, 200 quid for a double.

      1. Seamus

        €40 for an exhotel from ex Des Kelly place in Phibsboro. Cleaned and great quality. I got an orthopedic one. Have it 2 years and still perfect

      2. Pluto

        If you pay rent you are a tenant and you have rights. These would not appear to be ticks. Ticks do not inhabit houses they live in ferns and long grass usually in areas where there are livestock so they have a plentiful of supply of blood.

        If they were ticks you would wake up with dozens of them stuck to you and full of your blood.

        Document everything – pictures of the bugs, contact the landlord in writing repeatedly and request that he do something about it. It is his obligation. Are you living in Dublin 1 by any chance?

    2. Barry the Hatchet

      Dude, surely if you are paying €600 a month you can afford to live somewhere legit, which doesn’t have a disgusting bug problem? I know rents are crazy at the moment but €600 a month will still get you a nice houseshare.

    1. Rob_G

      Ticks aren’t usually active in winter, and Lyme disease isn’t very common in Ireland, so I wouldn’t worry too much about that.

  2. ringusboreum

    Clean bedding, linens, curtains, and clothing in hot water and dry them on the highest dryer setting. …
    Use a stiff brush to scrub mattress seams to remove bedbugs and their eggs before vacuuming.
    Hoover your bed and surrounding area frequently.
    Google it like I did. !

  3. Kippy Wippy

    We had bedbugs. Getting rid of them involved a lot of bug spraying of the mattress, a visit from pest exterminators and (I don’t know whether this helped) baking soda around all the feet of the bedframe.

  4. James

    You could;
    1. Buy a pair of bed bugs pyjamas and try to fit in, befriend the most popular one first.
    2. Ask them to start paying rent and bills, make them pay their way at least.
    3. Set the mattress on fire to burn their habitat down.
    4. Find a boyfriend/girlfriend who lives somewhere nicer than you and move in with them
    5. Google your problem

  5. Anomanomanom

    You sure it was a bug. I ask because believe it or not the area around the binary hub in dublin 8, since the week they started building, is infested with mosquitos. They come and go lately. But for up to two years, constantly, we were getting bites. Any building work near you.

    1. edalicious

      There’s mozzies everywhere these days. I keep having to kill the feckers in my bedroom at night.

      1. Anomanomanom

        Dublin 8 seems especially bad, iv spoken to people from Oliver bond to James street and they all have or had a huge problem with them. But in all my life living in Dublin 8 it was never an issue, only when building work on some of the older land Guinness sold.

      2. Anomanomanom

        By the way, we bought the boots brand plug in works perfectly. We haven’t had to use them in months though. But they really do work.

  6. edalicious

    I’m not sure what the potential risks are but you probably should get onto the RTB. Your “landlord” might decide to give you the boot if you do though. I’m sure that would leave him open to legal action but sometimes it’s not worth the hassle.

  7. Jade

    A way to tell if it is Bed Bugs is Bed bug bites usually occur in a line on your body as they bite as they move along. Mosquitoes are more random and where you are exposed. Some people hardly react to the bites at all. I myself get giant welts from the feckers.
    They not only live in your bed frame/mattress but they can be in any small space in your room, even the plug sockets.
    From what I gathered while in Australia insecticide will only kill the bugs not the eggs, they can stay alive for up to a year. Heat is the only way to kill the eggs. So wash and dry your cloths/bed linen on hot but if you can also get hold of a steam cleaner try heating along the skirting boards. Obviously dont spray into the power sockets but maybe check in them to see if there are any bug droppings.

    1. Shane

      Not true, I didn’t react to them at all, except for the odd isolated bite. It was only when someone was stayong over and she got the bites that I started looking

  8. GiggidyGoo

    They’re part of the contract. Michael D signed it into law last Christmas Day. They’re to ensure you get up early in the morning.

  9. Johnner

    we had these. boil EVERYTHING thats made of material in your house and they’ll die. Pain in the ass, but worked.

  10. petey

    take rhe topsheet and drape it over the mattress as the bottom sheet. the buggers would have to make an epic journey to get to your blood that way.

    grease the legs of your bedframe with Vaseline. tbey will not be able to clinb.

    vacuum REALLY thoroughly all about the floor anent the bed.

    i believe this will put a stop to your problem.

  11. Benny

    They’re difficult to get rid of – you will need to (at a minimum) get rid of the mattress, duvet and pillow (fumigating them doesn’t work), and clean out (someone suggested build washing, which sounds about right) all fabrics in the room. If you have carpets in the room that could be a problem. They look exactly like the critters in the photo; they’re not small, so you should be able to confirm if you’re affected quickly enough.

    Best of luck with them – I was living in a place that was infested with them about 15 years ago, and it was awful. If you’re one of the people they like (I was) then you can feel like you’re being eaten alive. I’d suggest chowing down on some raw garlic, as they can be repelled by the smell if it coming from your pores.

  12. gerry

    Buy an anti dust mite mattress cover that encloses the mattress entirely. If they are in the mattress they will be sealed in and will hibernate. They will die after about 18months.

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