Chicago ranks No. 3 on Orkin's list of bed bug cities

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago still has one of the country's worst bed bug problems, according to a cringe-worthy ranking released by Orkin Monday.

The Windy City ranked No. 3 on the list of top 50 bed bug cities for the second year running, though it is an improvement. Chicago previously held the no. 1 position from 2012-2016.

The list is determined by the number of bed bug treatments the pest control company serviced in the last year.

Orkin's Top 50 Bed Bug Cities:

1. Baltimore
2. Washington, D.C.
3. Chicago
4. Los Angeles
5. Columbus, Ohio
6. New York (+2)
7. Cincinnati (-1)
8. Detroit (-1)
9. Atlanta (+4)
10. Philadelphia (+2)
11. Cleveland-Akron (+3)
12. San Francisco (-3)
13. Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (+2)
14. Indianapolis (-3)
15. Dallas (-5)
16. Norfolk, Va. (+2)
17. Richmond, Va. (-1)
18. Greenville, S.C. (+7)
19. Charlotte, N.C.
20. Grand Rapids, Mich. (+3)

21. Buffalo, N.Y. (-1)
22. Knoxville, Tenn. (-1)
23. Nashville, Tenn. (-1)
24. Champaign, Ill. (+2)
25. Pittsburg (-1)
26. Houston (-9)
27. Denver (+1)
28. Milwaukee (+1)
29. Miami (+8)
30. St. Louis (+5)
31. Charleston, W.Va.
32. Lansing, Mich. (new to list)
33. Syracuse, N.Y.
34. Phoenix (-7)
35. Tampa, Fla. (+14)
36. Greensboro, N.C. (+10)
37. Omaha, Neb. (+2)
38. Boston (-6)
39. Seattle (-3)
40. Las Vegas (+5)
41. Orlando, Fla. (new to list)

42. Davenport, Iowa (new to list)
43. Hartford, Conn. (-13)
44. Cedar Rapids, Iowa (-4)
45. Dayton, Ohio (-11)
46. Honolulu (-3)
47. Flint, Mich. (-9)
48. Ft. Wayne, Ind. (new to list)
49. San Diego (-8)
50. Youngstown, Ohio (new to list)

According to Orkin, bed bugs are capable of rapid population growth, with an adult female laying two to five eggs per day - up to 500 in a lifetime. Adult bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed and are typically reddish brown in color.

Here are proactive tips Orkin recommends for homeowners and travelers:

At Home:
Inspect your home for signs of bed bugs regularly. Check the places where bed bugs hide during the day, including mattress tags and seams, and behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets and picture frames.
Decrease clutter around your home to make it easier to spot bed bugs on your own or during professional inspections.
Inspect all secondhand furniture before bringing it inside your home. This is a common way for bed bugs to be introduced into homes.
Dry potentially infested bed linens, curtains and stuffed animals on the hottest temperature allowed for the fabric.

During travel, remember the acronym S.L.E.E.P. to inspect for bed bugs:
Survey the hotel room for signs of an infestation. Be on the lookout for tiny, ink-colored stains on mattress seams, in soft furniture and behind headboards.
Lift and look in bed bug hiding spots: the mattress, box spring and other furniture, as well as behind baseboards, pictures and even torn wallpaper.
Elevate luggage away from the bed and wall. The safest places are in the bathroom or on counters.
Examine your luggage carefully while repacking and once you return home from a trip. Always store luggage away from the bed.
Place all dryer-safe clothing from your luggage in the dryer for at least 15 minutes at the highest setting after you return home.
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