Mom’s comforting tuck-them-in-words – “Sleep tight, don’t let the bedbugs bite” – is becoming an impossible dream for millions of people as the world experiences a resurgence of an ancient scourge that is fostering human misery, financial burdens and the risk of exposure to potentially toxic materials. That’s the message from the cover story of the current edition of Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), ACS’ weekly newsmagazine.
In the article, C&EN News Editor William G. Schulz points out those bedbugs represent a growing epidemic that is difficult to control. The bugs hide in mattresses, box springs, nightstands, and other areas, emerging at night to dine on human blood. Their bites can cause allergic skin reactions, mental anguish, and loss of sleep. Infestations can be a financial burden, with professional extermination sometimes costing thousands of dollars and taking eight weeks or more. Continue reading