Dr. Joel Schlessinger notes the importance of studying historical research when dealing with bed bugs

Taking notes from history, researchers are studying natural and safe ways to eliminate the common bed bug problem. The article “How a Leafy Folk Remedy Stopped Bedbugs in Their Tracks” recently published in the New York Times discusses one study that may remove the need to use harsh chemicals when dealing with bed bugs.

Researchers are attempting to replicate an old European technique where women would cover the floors of infested rooms with bean leaves. The unique texture of the bean leaves would hook onto protrusions on the bed bugs outer shells to prevent them from escaping. Research such as this, explains Dr. Joel Schlessinger, highlights the importance of studying history when conducting new research.

Historically, bed bugs are a common problem that cause rashes and other allergic reactions, explains Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

Bed bugs dwell in dark, confined places and they often cause allergic reactions that can itch or become irritated. Traditionally, bed bugs are treated using a combination of chemicals and pesticides that can have drastic effects on an individual’s health and the environment. Research into a natural and safe alternative, such as replicating the bean leaf technique, is an important area to study.

“This is a natural, chemical-free and pesticide-free way to treat the problem, as opposed to the alternative, DDT, which nearly killed off an entire species,” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

Learning to replicate historical techniques is an excellent way to develop technology today, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

Scientists are continuing to study the effectiveness of the bean leaf technique and how it can be replicated today. Because bed bugs are developing a resistance to pesticides, it is becoming increasingly important to eliminate the need for harsh chemicals.

“It pays to know what was researched years ago,” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger. “If people knew what had been discovered historically, we would have a much better world.”

Posted Thursday, April 18th, 2013 at 4:50 pm
Filed Under Category: Research and Studies
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