Cockroaches are scavengers, eating almost anything that is digestible, including carboard, paper or glue. These insects thrive in warm, humid and dark conditions. It doesn’t take them long to reproduce, making it imperative to have a plan for cockroach control at the first signs of an infestation. Cockroaches aren’t just a bothersome pest but have negative affects to your health:
- Contaminate food by depositing egg shells or droppings anywhere they roam.
- Leaving behind disease-causing bacteria on food or countertops.
- Cockroach bites, although uncommon, do occur. Small wounds from insect bites can be annoying and even painful.
- There have been several cases of cockroaches entering the ear or nose of a sleeping person.
- Roaches carry the bacterium Salmonella, responsible for cases of food poisoning.
- The secretions of cockroaches can cause allergic reactions such as sneezing, skin rashes or watery eyes.
- An infestation can make it difficult to breathe.
- It’s been found asthma symptoms are worsened in a home with a cockroach infestation.
- Cockroaches carry the bacteria that causes dysentery, a form of severe diarrhea.
- Dealing with an infestation can be emotionally damaging, from the (unwarranted) shame associated with having roaches.
Signs of a Cockroach Infestation
Although poor housekeeping is most commonly associated with a cockroach infestation, cockroaches will come into any home where they can find water or food. A small leak in your bathroom could turn into a breeding ground, no matter how clean the rest of your house is.
Seeing roaches themselves are just one indicator that you have a problem. Roaches are nocturnal creatures and prefer the dark, so it might be difficult to see them at first. You may see pepper-like droppings around your countertops or in cabinets, which are the feces of roaches. Sometimes, you may experience a musty smell if the infestation is particularly bad.
Getting Rid of Cockroaches
Cockroach control can be quite difficult, as it can feel as if these insects could survive the apocalypse. Cockroaches can become resistant to some common pesticides. It often takes a strategic approach to rid your home of them, consisting of:
- Chemical management, such as insecticides and toxic bait
- Environmental management, including reduced accessibility by closing gaps in the home, keeping food and water unavailable to roaches and checking boxes and furniture for bugs before bringing them into the home
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