The Cities With the Most Infested Bed Bugs

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Written By Jim J Neal

An inglorious list, indeed. Here’s how to prevent bringing bed bugs home to yours.

This is one list no one wants their city to make.

Pest control company Orkin released its 2022 Top 50 Bed Bug Cities List, noting where Orkin performed the most treatments from Dec. 1, 2020, to Nov. 30, 2021. So where are the worst bed bug infestations?

For the second year in a row, Chicago took the top spot on Orkin’s list. Jumping a whopping 12 spots to the No. 2 slot: Philadelphia. And rounding out the top three is New York City, the Big Apple climbing a notable nine spots from last year.

Here are the top ten cities on Orkin’s 2022 list:

  1. Chicago;
  2. Philadelphia;
  3. New York City;
  4. Detroit;
  5. Baltimore;
  6. Indianapolis;
  7. Washington, D.C.;
  8. Cleveland, Ohio;
  9. Columbus, Ohio;
  10. Cincinnati.

Baltimore fell three spots compared to last year, and Washington, D.C, fell four spots. Cities dropping out of the top ten include Grand Rapids, Michigan (No. 11 this year) and Los Angeles (No. 12).

If you live in or visit any of these cities, it’s wise to be more vigilant about looking for signs of bed bugs — and maybe stock up on some bed bug killer.

On This Page

What is the Main Cause of Bed Bugs?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC), bed bugs like attaching themselves to luggage, bags, clothes, bedding, furniture or anything else that lets them easily hide and hitch a ride. That means that if people travel somewhere with a bed bug infestation, they can bring home unwanted souvenirs.

Long story short: Always inspect hotel rooms or any place you might be staying while traveling.

Bed bugs have a long and pesky history that dates to ancient Egypt. Colonists brought them to the U.S. But by the 1950s, they had been pretty much eradicated by modern cleaning and pest-control products. Thank you, vacuums and washing machines.

They made an unfortunate comeback in the late 1990s, due to an uptick in international travel and a lack of public awareness. In short, we forgot about them.

How Long Do Bed Bugs Live?

According to Orkin, bed bugs typically live four to six months, but some can survive for up to a year in the right conditions. Bed bugs thrive in cluttered spaces where they can go unnoticed. Yuck.

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