Can You Get Bed Bugs On An Air Mattress?

Bedbugs cause physical and mental stress because of their painful bite and difficulty in eliminating. Unfortunately, the mattress is the favorite habitat for scary pests, and homeowners use inflatable mattresses to keep the bugs off.

Bedbugs can get on an air mattress, bite you, and crawl to their hideout, but they can’t penetrate the PVC/ vinyl material. To keep an air mattress bedbug-free, vacuum and cover it, steam-clean the floor, change and clean the bedding, wash your pets, or use pesticides.  

Bed bugs can turn your life upside down and even force you to move houses. Investing in an air mattress can prevent an infestation, but these pests can still climb on the mattress surface and bite you. Let’s learn how bed bugs can get on your air mattress and various ways to get rid of these irritating pests.  

Can Air Mattresses Get Bedbugs?

Woman with magnifying glass detecting bed bugs on mattress

Bedbugs are a nightmare to every household owner. The painful bites can cause untold misery for both the old and the young in your home.

The small, red-brown parasitic insects live on human blood, and their small size (1 to 7 millimeters) makes these pests hard to find. In addition, before a bite, a bedbug numbs the skin’s surface, which means you only feel pain long after the bite. 

Heat and carbon dioxide released from your body attracts the bugs. They can stay for days or weeks without feeding, making them even harder to spot. Their flat, round bodies are perfect for hiding, and most homeowners suffer in silence. 

A regular mattress allows the bugs to penetrate and provides an ideal habitat for an infestation. Bedbugs drill holes inside the foam and lay eggs. The easiest solution is to throw away your regular foam mattress in such cases. 

An air mattress has a unique construction featuring polyvinyl chloride (PVC), rubber, or other elastic materials and features a smooth fabric top to create a comfortable sleeping surface. The inflatable structure differs from ordinary foam mattresses because there are no sewn seams.

Using air mattresses is one solution homeowners apply to avoid bedbug infestation, but this is not foolproof since bedbugs can get on the surface and bite you before crawling away fast. 

How to Find Bedbugs

Spotting bedbugs isn’t easy, but you can find signs of an infestation around your home. The obvious sign is a bite on the arms, legs, face, feet, or neck. And some people have allergic reactions to bedbug bites and get larger swellings and other reactions. 

Other signs of bedbugs include blood stains on the bedding. Dark or rusty spots on your mattress could be signs of bedbug excrement, eggshells, or shed skin. They also release a strong, offensive, musty odor with continued infestation.

By the time you notice these signs of an infestation, you’ll have suffered a lot of distress. Bedbugs cause horrible nights by affecting your sleep quality. In addition, if you have a baby or young kids in your house, they won’t sleep comfortably, adding to your mental trauma. 

How Do You Get Rid of Bed Bugs in an Air Mattress?

If you’ve discovered signs of bedbugs on your air mattress, act fast to prevent the infestation spread around the house. Removing bedbugs on your air mattress is easier than on a traditional foam mattress. 

You have the option of calling an exterminator, but there are simple steps you can take to get rid of bedbugs in an air mattress. Here are some successful ways to remove the scary insects from your bed:

Wash Your Bedding 

One advantage of an air mattress is the compact seamless construction using sturdy PVC or other plastics. This means bedbugs can’t chew into the bed or hide along the seams.

The only place to hide with an air mattress is in your bed linen. Washing the bedding is the easiest way to get rid of bedbugs on your air mattress. 

Strip the air mattress off any covering and clean the bedding in a washing machine. After removing the bedding, seal them tightly into a plastic bag to prevent the bedbugs from escaping. Next, add all the fabrics in and around the bed, including pillows, floor mats, and curtains. 

Remove bedtime wear, including pajamas, caps, socks, and any other garments you use when sleeping. Then, choose a high heat setting in the washing machine and dryer to kill the bedbugs. The high heat setting also eradicates any eggs on the fabrics. 

Vacuum Your Air Mattress 

Using a HEPA-filtered vacuum cleaner on your mattress is an effective way to eliminate bedbugs. To clean the mattress effectively, vacuum every side, including the area around the bed, and turn it around to kill the bugs and eggs.

Now that bed bugs can’t live on an air mattress, and they’ll hide in other places near the bed and come out at night for feeding. 

Steam Clean Your Flooring

Steam cleaning is an eco-friendly way to get rid of bedbugs. If you’ve checked the air mattress for bed bugs, use a heavy-duty steamer to clean the area around the bed. Heat is the biggest threat to a bedbug, and you can exterminate these pests from your bed with a steam cleaner.

Steam cleaning is a natural disinfecting solution that won’t leave any toxic chemicals in your home. It is also less costly compared to the use of pesticides for bedbug extermination. 

Freeze the Bugs 

If you have a bedbug infestation on your air mattress, deflate the mattress first. Then, place the bed in a garbage disposal bag and seal tightly. Finally, place the bag in a freezer for about four days to kill any bedbugs.  

Bathe Your Pets Thoroughly 

Unfortunately, bed bugs also feed on animal blood, and If you’ve pets, bedbugs might hide on their underbelly or other parts of their bodies. And you’ll notice your pets get increasingly uncomfortable. 

If you notice signs of a bedbug infestation on your air mattress, check your pets closely for bites. To protect your cat, dog, or other pets from bed bugs, bathe them thoroughly in warm water and use a disinfectant.

Use a Bedbug Spray 

Use a bedbug killer around the house if you spot signs of a bedbug infestation. Pesticides come in the form of dusting agents or sprays. Take care when handling these products to avoid poisoning. 

How to Keep Bedbugs off Your Air Mattress

Bed Bug

When dealing with bedbugs on an air mattress, the maxim prevention is better than cure applies aptly. Preventing the infestation is easier and cheaper, and you won’t have to go through the physical and emotional trauma caused by bedbugs. To keep bed bugs off your air mattress, here are some simple steps:

  1. Use a mattress cover: After buying an air mattress, use an impenetrable cover to protect the mattress and keep away bed bugs. 
  2. Stay on the lookout: Whether you’ve suffered a bedbug infestation or not, always stay alert and look out for signs of infestation. If you notice any signs of infestation, use effective steps to remove the pests.
  3. Scrutinize second-hand furniture: Most household owners bring bed bugs along unknowingly after buying used furniture. Before bringing the items home, inspect the furniture and disinfect it to kill any bedbugs. 
  4. Keep your bedroom clean: To keep bed bugs off your air mattress, clean your bedroom thoroughly. Steam the floors and wash all fabric on and around your bed. 
  5. Change bedding: Don’t use the same linen several days in a row. Changing bedding regularly and washing them prevents bed bug infestation. 

An air mattress is an excellent idea to prevent bedbug infestation, but they can still get on the surface and bite you, so use these tips to get rid of the pests.