Cincinnati is the Fifth Worst City in America for Bed Bugs

Or the best — if you're a bed bug

click to enlarge A bed bug nymph - PHOTO: CREATIVE COMMONS
Photo: Creative Commons
A bed bug nymph

Pest control company Terminix has released its annual ranking of the 25 most bed-bug infested cities in America and, surprise, Cincinnati was in the top 5 — No. 5 to be exact. 

Just like the rankings in 2018, Ohio had the most cities on the list, with six in the top 50; Cleveland and Cincinnati were in the top 10.

Last year (and the year before) Cleveland ranked No. 1, falling this year to No. 7, with Philadelphia claiming the 2019 crown as the worst city in America for bed bugs infestations. The data was collected based on Terminix services rendered between April 16, 2018 and April 19, 2019. 

According to Terminix, "New research reveals one-fifth (22 percent) of Americans polled have had a bed bug encounter, and the odds are much higher for those with children (35 percent). Despite the high incidence rates and increased awareness of bed bugs, this research shows nearly half of the country who travel (48 percent) do not know what precautions to take to guard against them."

Bed bugs are small, oval-shaped wingless reddish brown bugs that are most active at night. They are hard to spot directly, so look for signs of their existence, like bed bug skins and blood spots on mattresses or sheets.

If you're traveling this summer, Terminix has these disgusting but helpful tips:

  • Check hotel headboards, mattresses and box springs for live bed bugs, their exoskeletons and/or dark blood spots.
  • While full-grown bed bugs are about the size, shape and color of an apple seed, travelers should also look for newly hatched nymphs, which are cream-colored and the size of letters on a penny, as well as small translucent eggs, which may be found in the tucks and folds of sheets.
  • Hang all clothing. Leave nothing lying on the bed or furniture.
  • Avoid storing clothing in a hotel’s furniture drawers.
  • Store suitcases on a luggage rack as far away from the bed as possible.
  • Vacuum suitcases when returning home, and immediately wash clothing in hot water.
  • Between trips, store luggage in a sealed plastic bag in a garage or basement, away from bedrooms.

If you think you have come in contact with bed bugs, call a pest control company and remember that they can be killed with heat. While you shouldn't light yourself or your clothing on fire, the pest control company does recommend that you launder clothing or other belongings that may have come in contact with the bugs on the highest heat setting allowable on the label or use a portable heat chamber. Or also just burn it.

And without further ado, here are the top 25 places to avoid visiting this summer...


Terminix Top 25 Bed Bug Cities: 

  1. Philadelphia
  2. New York
  3. Dallas-Fort Worth
  4. Indianapolis
  5. Cincinnati
  6. Los Angeles
  7. Cleveland, Ohio
  8. Washington, D.C.
  9. Chicago
  10. Boston
  11. Columbus, Ohio
  12. Houston
  13. Baltimore
  14. Atlanta
  15. Detroit
  16. Pittsburgh
  17. Memphis, Tennessee
  18. Nashville, Tennessee
  19. Orlando
  20. Tampa, Florida
  21. Louisville, Kentucky
  22. St. Louis
  23. Little Rock
  24. Dayton, Ohio
  25. Charleston-Huntington, West Virginia

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