As if the road to romance wasn’t hazardous enough, Cornell University entomologist and renowned bed bug expert Jody Gangloff-Kaufmann recently told Marie Claire magazine recently that dating basically doubles the odds of infestation. Preventive measures include:
- Running your date's address through the Bedbug Registry (bedbugregistry.com) to see whether he or she lives in an infested apartment building.
- Checking out your potential paramour's arms, face, back of hands and neck for telltale red blotches (but remember--not everyone has a physical reaction to bed bug bites)
- Asking outright if your date has (or recently had) bed bugs.
- Avoiding the movies, as bed bugs love plush furniture and human targets who sit still for long periods of time. Opt for ice-skating, bars without padded booths and museums.
- Choosing your place over theirs if things get intimate. (For extra protection, toss your guest's clothes in the dryer on high heat to kill any hitch-hikers.)