Are Cockroaches Dangerous?

It is estimated that nearly 78% to 98% of urban homes have cockroaches.

cockroach in sink

Cockroaches can live and breed in any place where they can find water, food and shelter. Obviously your home supplies all these necessities to cockroaches. It is no wonder, these insects have multiplied and invaded many homes, and have become an unbearable nuisance for homeowners.

Official records state that nearly 78% to 98% of urban homes have cockroaches. Many of homeowners are not even aware of the presence of these insects because they are very good at hiding. If you happen to see one, you can be sure that there are likely many more lurking nearby. Unfortuantely these pests are also potentially dangerous to your health.

They Cause Allergies and Breathing Problems

Tiny parts of the cockroach’s body can be left behind and become a part of the dust in the house. These are allergens which cause breathing problems, asthma and allergies.

Cockroaches produce a protein which can lead to an allergic reaction in some people. In fact, their saliva, moltings, waste, and even dead cockroaches can act as triggers. Some common signs that a person is suffering from a cockroach allergy are nasal congestion, headache, sinus pain, wheezing, and coughing.

Research shows that when asthmatic children are exposed to cockroaches their condition becomes worse and they have to be treated more frequently when compared to the children who suffer only from asthma.

They Carry Pathogens

Cockroaches play an important role in spreading some infections. A study conducted by a University in 50 apartments identified 30 species of bacteria which are associated with the cockroaches.

The World Health Organization states that cockroaches may carry microorganisms which cause dysentery, diarrhea, plague, cholera, typhoid fever, leprosy and viral diseases like poliomyelitis.

They Contaminate Food

Cockroaches love to stay in warm, moist and dirty environments. They live in drains, dumpsters and bathrooms where a there are plenty of dangerous bacteria. The bacteria get attached to their body and are carried to the food on which the cockroaches sit and eat. For instance, the salmonella bacteria which is transported in this manner may cause food poisoning. Cockroaches often defecate or lay their eggs near the food or in the area where the food is prepared. This further increases the chances of contamination.

They Can Bite

Some species bite human beings. If the house is heavily infested with cockroaches, the people living there should be very careful. Sometimes the cockroaches nibble on the soft skin, toes and fingernails and cause wounds. Their heavy leg spines can scratch the skin.


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