Cockroaches have been around for over 70 million years and it is believed that they would survive a nuclear explosion. They have always been around humans where they could easily get food and shelter. You will usually see them at night, but may also see them during the day, scurrying to get to a damp, dark spot, such as a pipe hole, the corner of your refrigerator or a cardboard box. While cockroaches are actually clean bugs, they can carry infectious agents and bacteria that will make you ill.
The bugs themselves are not poisonous – it's what they carry that makes them “dirty.” They carry bacteria that could cause you to suffer from many diseases from food poisoning to diarrhea. Cockroach infestation health risks may come from food contamination, bites, invasion of your body parts such as ear or nose, allergies to the bugs and even the exacerbation of asthma.
Even if your house is perfectly clean, cockroaches will find a way in. If you have bushes against the house, openings where pipes and wires go into the house, cracks in the foundation or any other access point, they will come in looking for food and water. They are more apt to come in if they smell food or garbage left out.
In most cases, roaches are not a health code violation, though some cities and counties may serve you with a violation if the infestation is extreme. One of the cons of cockroaches, other than that they could cause severe illness, is that they are extremely hardy, which makes them difficult to get rid of. A cockroach could live up to three months without food.
Can cockroaches make you sick? What happens if a cockroach bites you? Yes, these little bugs can make you sick. And if a cockroach bites you, you may suffer from one of these diseases or illnesses – or nothing may happen. It depends on the type of bacteria the cockroach is carrying and whether you are susceptible to that bacteria.
This is only a partial list of disease and infections that are caused by cockroaches. Others include other issues caused by the type of bacteria the cockroach is carrying.
To help prevent cockroach infestation, make sure it's harder for them to get into your house by sealing up any cracks in the foundation. Dissuade them from your yard by keeping the thatch cleaned up. Keep bushes away from the house.
Inside, keep all food and crumbs picked up. Seal foodstuffs in airtight containers, especially if something comes in a cardboard box. Keeping the counter tops cleaned and sanitized also helps to keep cockroaches from being attracted to your kitchen.
Take the trash out every day. If you must leave it inside, be sure it's covered. Instead of using a large kitchen bag, use smaller bags so that you can tie them off and take them to an outside trash can each day.
Finally, make sure the cockroaches don't have access to water. Repair any dripping sinks and leaky pipes. Keep pet water and food dishes picked up and clean. And, transfer pet food to sealed containers.
If you see signs of cockroaches or the bugs themselves, contact Clint Miller Exterminating to schedule an appointment to have your home or apartment sprayed for pests.