One of the busiest travel days of the year is approaching, but one thing travelers might not think about is the risk of picking up bed bugs on their trips. Contrary to their name, these bloodsucking insects can be found in many household objects, including curtain rods and even behind baseboards or switch plates. The bugs are also expert hitchhikers and can spread by being on or in consumers’ belongings as they go about their daily activities using mass transit, staying in hotels and moving around the country through airports.
In anticipation of the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, Terminix has released its 2018 list of the top 25 cities affected by bed bugs.
Where Are Bed Bugs Common?
Using service data from more than 300 branches across the country, Terminix identified 25 cities where residents had the highest number of bed-bug control services*:
- Los Angeles
- Dallas-Fort Worth
- New York
- Columbus, Ohio
- Dayton, Ohio
- St. Louis
- San Francisco
- Tampa, Fla.
- Washington, D.C.
- Louisville, Ky.
- Nashville, Tenn.
- Memphis, Tenn.
Dealing With Bed Bugs
Infestations of these pests are notoriously difficult to treat, and homeowners who suspect that bed bugs may have been introduced or found in their homes should contact a pest control professional. In the meantime, both people staying at home and those traveling can help avoid or control bed bugs with the following tips:
Bed bugs are largely active at night, so infestations can be difficult to spot. Look for signs of the insects like shed bed bug skins and blood spots on mattresses or sheets.
Launder clothing and other belongings, as recommended on the label, suspected of being exposed to bed bugs at high temperatures to help kill off the pests.
Keep potentially compromised luggage in a plastic bag to prevent the insects from spreading to other belongings.
Contact a Bed Bug Control Specialist
Efforts to remove a bed bug infestation are often costly and ineffective, so it’s best to leave pest control to the professionals. Terminix technicians are specially trained to detect bed bugs and implement customized treatment plans to help give you your house back.