Home » Bed Bugs » Can Bed Bugs Live in High Altitudes?

Can Bed Bugs Live in High Altitudes?

Living in a high-altitude area may make you think you’re safe from bed bugs. 

Bed bugs can live practically anywhere, including at high altitudes. Since bed bugs need humans to survive, they have adapted to survive pretty much everywhere humans can, even high up in the mountains. Thus, there really isn’t anywhere you can go to get away from these insects. 

Are Bed Bugs Bothered by High Altitudes?

Close-up photo of a bed bug on a fabric.

Bed bugs do not care about high altitudes. 

Many animals and insects can not live at high altitudes because there is less oxygen at these heights. 

The lack of oxygen makes some organisms, including certain people, sick and can often lead to headaches, dizziness, and vomiting

In extreme cases, high altitudes can cause fluid to build up in a creature’s body. 

None of these problems affect bed bugs, though. 

In fact, bed bugs are one of the few insects that live in almost all of the world’s environments. 

Where Are Bed Bugs the Worst?

There really isn’t a specific area of the world that bed bugs prefer. 

You can find them on every continent of the globe, except Antarctica. 

They also don’t discriminate between developed and developing countries. 

Developing nations do tend to have a more challenging time getting rid of them because many people lack access to safe pesticides that can kill bed bugs. 

However, those in developed regions are more likely to sleep on mattresses with bed frames which give the bed bugs more places to hide, more so than on mats or hammocks. 

Are There More Bed Bugs in the City or the Country?

A photo of a busy street in New York City.

There tend to be more bed bugs in urban areas simply because there are more people around to spread them. 

Yet, rural regions aren’t necessarily safe. 

Overall, though, the most sparsely populated US states, like North Dakota and Wyoming, do have fewer bed bugs. 

Which US States Have the Biggest Bed Bug Problem?

The states with the biggest bed bug problems are Illinois, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Ohio, in that order. 

However, though not a state, Washington DC actually has the most bed bugs in the country. 

Which US Cities Have the Most Bed Bugs?

When it comes to US cities with the worst bed bug infestations, Chicago frequently tops the list. 

The other cities in the top nine are: 

  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 
  • New York City, New York 
  • Detroit, Michigan 
  • Baltimore, Maryland 
  • Indianapolis, Indiana 
  • Washington DC 
  • Cleveland, Ohio 
  • Columbus, Ohio 
  • Cincinnati, Ohio 

Which US States Have the Least Amount of Bed Bugs?

Close-up photo of the map of the United States.

The US states with the least amount of bed bugs are Wyoming, North Dakota, Montana, Louisiana, and Maine. 

Are Mountainous States Less Likely to Have Bed Bugs?

Overall, mountainous states are not less likely to have bed bugs. 

I mean, you may have noticed that some of the states with the least amount of bed bugs hold significant portions of the Rocky Mountains. 

And, yes, Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, and Utah are some of the US states where you’re the least likely to get bed bugs. 

Yet, West Virginia and North Carolina contain some of the highest peaks of the Appalachian Mountains, but they both have relatively high numbers of bed bugs. 

Can Bed Bugs Live in the Cold?

An untidy bed next to a window with a view of snow-covered trees.

Bed bugs do not particularly like the cold. 

You see, bed bugs are cold-blooded insects, meaning they can not produce their own heat as humans do. 

Instead, they must obtain the warmth they need to live from their surrounding environment. 

But, bed bugs live indoors, so they seldom have to deal with extreme cold. 

That’s why bed bugs are a problem even in cold countries like Canada. 

Are Bed Bugs a Problem in Europe?

Bed bugs are an increasing issue in Europe. 

Unfortunately, though, because there is no universal data set on bed bugs in European countries like there is for US states, it is hard to tell which regions have the worst problem. 

But, for the most part, like in most places in the world, bed bugs are usually worse in cities rather than rural areas because there are more people to help them move around. 

For example, Paris has often appeared in international headlines because of its trouble with bed bugs. 

Paris is a hot spot for bed bugs because it is one of the continent’s biggest and most densely packed cities, and it welcomes more tourists than other areas. 

Are Bed Bugs a Problem in Canada? 

Photo of the flag of Canada.

Yes, just like in Europe and the United States, bed bug populations have been increasing in Canada. 

The cities with the biggest bed bug problems are Toronto, Sudbury, Vancouver, St. John’s, and Oshawa. 


Bed bugs live in all parts of the world and definitely can be a huge pest in high altitudes. 

However, in the US, Appalachian states have a worse problem than those in the Rockies.