For most people living in apartment buildings, the thought of bed bugs in their homes gives them a case of the heebie-jeebies... and rightly so. Bed bugs are like little vampires that suck blood from victims and sometimes cause allergic reactions, some of which can have serious health implications. They are problematic in apartment buildings because they can easily move from one apartment to the next.
For some people, the thought of these little vampire-like creatures is enough to cause them severe distress, which can impact their mental health and cause them to be unable to think clearly. In fact, a woman in Detroit was so distraught about her apartment being infested with bed bugs that she inadvertently set the entire apartment building ablaze while trying to get rid of the bugs herself. Here's what you need to know about the mental health risks of battling an infestation of bed bugs and what to do about it, especially if your landlord refuses to hire exterminator services.
Mental Health Risks
It is possible to have a phobia of bed bugs. This is more than just a fear of bed bugs being in your bed. It's a terrifying feeling that causes you to be impaired, psychologically and/or physically. Examples of the results of this impairment include insomnia, nightmares, anxiety, distress, PTSD, inability to think clearly, hypervigilance, and suicidal ideation
It's important to determine if the phobia is a new onset condition or one that is worsened by a pre-existing condition in order to get the best mental health care. For example, someone who has obsessive compulsive disorder may find themselves repeatedly checking and rechecking their bedding and furniture for bed bugs.
It's important to understand that, unless the phobia and possible underlying conditions are not dealt with, the person may continue to experience the adverse mental health effects of bed bugs in their apartment long after the bed bugs are exterminated. Therefore, it is crucial to get a psychological consultation so the healing process can begin for mental health.
Of course, if there is a bed bug infestation in your apartment, you'll want to call the landlord to get rid of the little buggers in order to get some peace of mind. Depending on the severity of the infestation, pest control services may need to perform several treatments throughout the entire building before the bed bugs are completely eliminated. Due to the potential high costs, especially if your apartment building is large, your landlord may delay getting the extermination services or not get them at all.
Filing a Lawsuit
Your landlord is legally obligated to provide you with habitable living conditions under what is called the implied warranty of habitability. While this does give you the ability to withhold rent and/or break your lease agreement, there are still other things to consider if you find yourself in this type of situation: your mental health, the loss of property, and the costs of moving and alternative living expenses (either temporary or permanent).
You can file a lawsuit for the pain and suffering of having to live in a bed bug infested apartment, including the effects it had on your mental health, regardless of whether or not you had a pre-existing condition. It's important to have your mental health professional give you a written assessment as to how long your recovery process is expected to take until you can go back to living life as normally as possible. It's important to make sure your compensation will cover the expenses for your mental health treatment.
Also, be sure to include the costs of replacing various personal items and belongings that you may have thrown away due to the bed bug infestation, such as your mattresses and upholstered furnishings. Moving and alternative living expenses can also be included in the lawsuit. Speak with a personal injury lawyer for more information.
For more information about personal injury suits, consider websites like http://www.danielgoodmanlaw.com.