Silverfish problems: the expert answers on silverfish (Lepismatidae)

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Many insects belonging to the family of Lepismatidae they often roam around the house. I meet them frequently in the morning and can't get rid of them.

I look forward to your kind suggestion.



Dearest Manlio,

I need some additional information to know the type of intervention to do. In fact, I do not understand if it is a real infestation or simply some lepismatidae that runs around the house.

I need to understand this because the types of intervention are different. A disinfestation in an inhabited house must be done wisely and only in case of actual need, otherwise other precautions must be implemented.

Do you have a fair amount of books or magazines? Do you have carpet? Do you have parquet? Are several rooms in the house affected or does their presence only concern one room? Approximately how many are there and how often do you see them circulating around the house?

I'm waiting for your answer.

See you soon


First of all, thank you for your interest and here is the additional information:

1- The books are many, but closed in showcases, moreover I have never had the opportunity to see lepismatidae in those places. 2 - There is no carpet or parquet in the house. 3 - They are present in all the rooms; less frequent in the bathroom. 4 - I see from 2 to 5 specimens every morning, which in most cases are eliminated.

I have been living in this apartment for almost a year and the lepismatidae are a legacy left to me by the previous tenant.

When I took possession of the apartment, I saw several lepismatidae, but after having treated all the corners of the apartment with a jet of steam, the quantity was decidedly diminished; now, a year later, there is a significant increase.

Thanks in advance for your help.



Dear Manlio,

in answer to your question I would suggest you to use the steam jet again but this time mixing boric acid water (you can find it in the pharmacy).

Boric acid is used specifically for the treatment against lepismatidae and if combined with the jet of steam, the result will undoubtedly be more than positive. With this system, you do not definitively eradicate the problem as from what I understand, considering that you do not have carpet or parquet, the lepismatidae have certainly nested in the baseboards or in the recesses of the windows or drawers, in short, in places that are not normally frequented. .

It is not possible to carry out a definitive "eradication" in an inhabited domestic environment as the insecticides to be used would be toxic to the health of the people who live there, considering that fumigations should be carried out (precisely because it is a very mobile insect and that nest in the most inaccessible corners). This more drastic treatment you should have done before you started living in it.

In any case, you will see that with the jet of steam and boric acid you will solve the problem for a long period of time, but take care to also pass it along all the skirting boards, drawers, doors, windows, in short, reach everyone the hidden corners. Eventually, after having done the treatment, you can also put boric acid powder directly in the places where you see them most circulating.

I remain available for any clarification.


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