Nov 02, 2022

“Good night. Sleep tight. Don’t let the bedbugs bite.”

Most of us have at least heard this quirky saying, if not said it ourselves. Perhaps you have memories of a parent or grandparent reciting it as they tucked you up in bed for the night. You have probably even said it to your own children! It’s just an amusing little anecdote that many people have gotten into the habit of saying. However, for anyone who has had to call on the services of bed bug treatment in Knoxville, these seemingly innocent words may strike fear in their heart! Bed bugs are not fun and can be one of the most challenging pests to get rid of. Tucking yourself in tight certainly isn’t going to prevent them from turning you into their next meal! So, where does this phrase come from? Let’s explore!

Good Night. Sleep Tight.

The first part of the saying is self-explanatory. It’s just a pleasantry we all exchange when bidding someone farewell before bed. We wish them a good night of restful sleep. It’s the next part of the phrase that seems a little strange. How do you sleep tight, and why would you want to? Some people think that it refers to children often having the bedsheets pulled tight and tucked around them to keep them snug in bed. However, this is not the origin of the phrase! Instead, one version of the story suggests that it dates back to bed design in the 1800s and early 1900s! At the time, most beds consisted of a wooden frame that was strung with a lattice of ropes with the mattress placed on top. Over time, the ropes would slacken from the weight of the person sleeping in the bed, so it was necessary to tighten them frequently so that the lattice support remained taught. Just like saying ‘good night to someone, when you say ‘sleep tight,’ you are reminding them to tighten the ropes - or perhaps simply wishing them a comfortable tightly strung bed!

Don’t Let The Bed Bugs Bite!

Now you may be wondering where the bed bugs come into this story! How do we go from wishing someone a comfortable night’s sleep to warning them of blood-sucking insects lurking between the sheets? The most likely explanation is that the mattresses used at the time were usually stuffed with straw, down feathers, and shredded corn husks. These are all materials that would attract the attention of bed bugs, and infestations of them were a big problem during this time, and they couldn’t just pick up the phone to call for bed bug treatment in Knoxville!

An Alternative Beginning

Some say that this origin of sleep night needs to be revised. The basis of this is that the first printed use of the phrase was in 1866 in a journal titled Through Some Eventful Years by Susan Bradford Eppes. Rope beds had fallen out of fashion by the time the first coil spring mattress was introduced in 1865, so it was unlikely that was what the author was referring to. Instead, the entomology of the phrase suggests that tightly also means safely or soundly. That would mean the term is simply a wish for undisturbed sleep!

Whichever version you choose to believe, there is one thing that is certain - bed bugs are unwanted houseguests, and no amount of tucking yourself up tight in bed will keep them from biting!

Bed Bug Treatment in Knoxville

Hiring professional bed bug treatment in Knoxville is the only course of action if you are struggling with a bed bug infestation in your home. This is not a pest you can take care of alone. Bed bugs are largely resistant to most household pesticides, which is why we use thermal heat treatment to eradicate them instead. This type of bed bug treatment in Knoxville can penetrate even the smallest crack and crevices around your home where bed bugs could be hiding. We raise the temperature to over 120 degrees, which is high enough that bed bugs and their eggs cannot survive. This is the single most effective method of dealing with bed bugs. It also eliminated the need for potentially harmful chemical treatments making it a big hit with pet owners and those with small children in the home. The treatment is also eco-friendly.

At Otis Termite & Pest Control, we guarantee to eliminate your current bed bug infestation. We cannot stop them from returning since they can be carried into your home in luggage, clothing, or furniture, but we will be happy to offer advice on the steps you can take to reduce the risk of future infestations. Above all else, we want you to know that bed bugs are nothing to be ashamed of. It is not a reflection of your cleanliness. Bed bugs are just as at home in a clean environment as they are in a dirty one!


Otis Termite & Pest Control is a full-service pest control company with a focus on outstanding service. We have been serving the East Tennessee area for over 56 years and our reputation is built on prompt and effective service. We’re good at what we do and we’re fast. We do the job right the first time – and that’s an actual guarantee! 

Call 865.690.1662 or visit www.otispestcontrol.net.



Emily Moeck

"I unknowingly moved into a home that had a HUGE bed bug infestation..."Don't you worry, we are on top of this until they are gone, I promise!"... Jack was knowledgeable and honest in his assessment of my house/treatment methods. Thank you, Jack and Rocky and the whole Otis team! My home is home again!"


Joshua Weaver

"Prompt responses and appointment times. Very friendly and knowledgeable. Straight forward service without any "pushing" for extras."


Charlotte Bishop

"These guys were super helpful and kind. Jack thoroughly explained every procedure and made what could have been a horrible situation much more bearable. I definitely recommend them!"


Tamie Ridenour

"Excellent service and staff!! They were at my house the same day I called, for New construction pre-treatment!"


Cathy Amos

"Highly recommend! Jack and Rocky are great! You've got a business and highest recommendation! Great people to work with!"

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