With as much traveling as we’ve done, we’re not sure how we were lucky enough to avoid the nightmare that is dealing with bed bugs. These tiny, but repulsive bugs are night owls that survive by feeding on the blood of innocent people while they sleep. 

Because bed bugs inject their prey with their own anesthetic and an anticoagulant, there's a very good chance that you won’t realize what happened the next morning. The CDC explains that bed bug bite marks may not be visible for several days. It’s possible for them to swell and become itchy, like mosquito bites which is annoying but the non visible symptoms of bed bug bites are even worse. They could cause insomnia and anxiety, too. 


The very thought is enough to send chills up your spine, but what’s worse is the nightmare doesn’t end there. Bed bugs are notorious stowaways that will find their way into the seams of your luggage, folds of your clothes and inside the pillowcase on the pillow you brought from home. Since they have skinny and flat bodies, they can hide in what seems like infinite places and they’ll stay there for as long as they need to. Then when you’re least expecting it, they’ll emerge, bite you again and start infecting the bedding and furniture at your home. 

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They don’t discriminate either. They’re just as likely to infest five star hotels and luxury cruise ships as they are shady no-tell motels, college dorm rooms and homeless shelters. 

How Can I Tell If A Bed is Infested with Bed Bugs?

Budget hotel room
Yong Hian Lim

It’s not an easy task since the CDC says they’ll hide in cracks, crevices, indentations in your head board, behind wallpaper and other objects in your bedroom until you go to sleep and it’s time to feed. Some signs that they may be nearby include finding their molted exoskeletons, rusty colored blood spots on your mattress and bedroom furniture and a sweet musty odor. Of course, you may actually see them too. They can get as large as 7mm, which the CDC says is about the size of Lincoln’s head on an American penny. 

California City Named the West’s “Bed Bug Capital”

Macro photo of a bed bug

Spring break is right around the corner and California is always a popular destination for Idaho families. That’s why we wanted to give you a heads up that one California city ranks among the top five most bed bug infested cities in America.  

Orkin recently released their annual bed bug report that ranks cities based on the number of bed bug treatments they performed between December 1, 2022 and November 30, 2023. The list ranges from mega metropolises to podunk cities like Youngstown, Ohio.

Los Angeles ranked #5 on the list. That’s no change from where they were in 2023. It's the highest ranked city in the west. Only Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia and Cleveland have worse bed bug problems. 

As for the Pacific Northwest? Seattle is the PNW’s bed bug capital. It ranked #44 on the list, which is good news. That’s down five spots from a year ago.

KEEP READING: Top 20 U.S. Cities That Are Crawling With Bed Bugs in 2024

Each year Orkin puts together their list of the Top 50 Bed Bug Destinations in the United States. Let's take a look and see which cities top the list.

KEEP READING: 9 Forbidden Foods That Are Banned in Idaho, Washington, Utah and California

Due to government regulations, these are foods that are forbidden in most of the United States.

Gallery Credit: Michelle Heart

Take a Look at the 15 California Cities Sending the Most People to Boise

Our sources include Neighborhood Scout, which uses FBI crime data or their safety rankings, the American Census Bureau, BestPlaces.net, Niche.com, which allows current and former residents to grade their state/city/town and Realtor.com. Crime Index means the city is safer than (X)% of cities in America. Home prices reflect the current availability in September 2023.

Gallery Credit: Michelle Heart

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