Turns Out Bedbugs Are Attracted to Your Dirty Laundry

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Photo: dblight/Getty Images

If you’re not gripped by constant low-grade terror and anxiety about the possibility of getting bedbugs, that sounds nice. For everyone else, scientists have newly discovered one thing that tends to attract them — which means you can be better equipped to prevent them, and maybe even spend less time up at 3 a.m. feverishly Googling pictures of different bug bites.

The Guardian reports that a new study in Scientific Reports found that bedbugs are highly into dirty laundry — in fact, they’re twice likely to cling onto it as they are clean clothes. Ecologist William Hentley, the first author on the paper, said, “It is the first time human odour has been considered as a potential mechanism facilitating long distance dispersal in bedbugs.”

So if you’re worried about bringing bedbugs back from your next vacation, make sure to wrap up your dirty clothes as tightly as possible — Ziploc bags are a good option — to avoid carrying them back with you.

One day, bedbugs, we will win.

Here’s One Thing That Can Really Attract Bedbugs