October 1, 2012
The fact remains… pests and rodents can have harmful effects upon your health and your family’s health. It is important to fully understand the dangers stemming from these types of infestations. Did you know that some of the most common pests in homes are cockroaches, rodents, and ants? It is unsettling to think of us sharing our homes with these pests because of the serious threats they pose. Below is a more detailed overview of the health risks associated with particular pests.
The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) reports that one-in-five children in the United States have severe sensitivities to cockroach allergens, which increase the severity of asthma symptoms. These allergens are most commonly introduced in homes through cockroach saliva, droppings, and the decomposing bodies of these pests. Cockroaches can also carry bacteria such as E coli and salmonella on their bodies, which can contaminate food, cooking equipment, and food surfaces.
Rodents can enter a building through almost any opening or crack. It is important to inspect for rodent droppings, especially in undisturbed areas such as pantries, under baseboards, and along walls. Rodent droppings most often cause allergic reactions in human beings but can also cause disease, including the potentially deadly Hantavirus. More frequently, though, rodents serve as vectors, carrying bacteria, such as salmonella, on their bodies and contaminating food sources, kitchen surfaces, and equipment.
With the increased prevalence of West Nile Virus in the summer months, mosquitoes continue to be, not only a summer nuisance pest but also, a major health threat. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), West Nile Virus infections have appeared across the United States in recent years, which makes avoiding mosquito nesting and breeding sites as well as eliminating standing water in or around the home even more important to the protection of public health. In addition, to the potential for West Nile Virus, mosquitoes can also cause itchy, unsightly marks and severe allergic reactions in human beings.
Lyme disease has emerged, in recent years, as a major health risk to human beings. Transmitted by ticks, typically between May and October, Lyme disease is largely found in the Northeastern, upper mid-western Western states of the U.S. However, there has been an increase in the diagnosed cases of Lyme disease in the South. It is critical to be vigilant of ticks, especially if you are in wooded areas. Symptoms of Lyme disease include a “bull’s eye” rash around the bite, flu-like symptoms and extreme fatigue.
Summer Stingers (Bees, Yellow Jackets, Hornets, Wasps, etc)
Stinging pests send more than 500,000 people to the emergency room each year. These pests are aggressive in nature and often sting as a way to protect their colonies or larvae from human beings who attempt to remedy an infestation on their own. This aggressiveness, combined with being disturbed, often means that these pests tend to sting repeatedly, which adds to the potential for greater skin irritation or a serious allergic reaction.
Ants are social insects. Therefore, spotting one ant unfortunately signifies there are many more to follow. Ants are not simply unsightly â€” they can also be dangerous contaminates to food. Considering that you likely eat multiple meals a day in your home, the presence of ants and the potential for food contamination from their presence is an issue that must be addressed when considering your health and the health of your family.
Fleas aren’t just a problem for man’s best friend. These pests, which commonly appear in warmer months, feed on the blood of any warm-blooded body. Typically biting human beings, fleas can cause itchy, unsightly marks as well as severe allergic reactions. Fleas tend to travel with mammals on the move, which can include not only you and your pet but also rodents. If you have a rodent problem in your home, fleas may be soon to follow.
Pest Ops can offer the necessary expertise and knowledge to best protect your health and to rid your home of infestations. If you have an infestation, be sure to take action! Contact Pest Ops to treat and to aid you in preventing future infestations. To schedule an appointment or inspection with Pest Ops, click here or call our office at (865) 966-0750.