If we're being honest—and we are always honest—you can live with cockroaches. You're not necessarily in immediate danger, and you may not be in serious danger for months, or even years. We say this for two reasons. First, you shouldn't be fearful of having cockroaches in your home. It doesn't do you any good to respond with fear. Cockroach infestations vary in size and threat level. There are many factors involved. Second, you shouldn't shrug off the threat cockroaches present to your health. Cockroaches are naturally drawn to filthy locations and they feed on many things that are filthy. Let's take a sobering look at how cockroaches may spread illness in your home.
Cockroaches Love Rotting Organic Matter
If given a choice between a fresh apple and a rotting apple, guess which one a cockroach will choose. They prefer to feed on organic matter that is in a state of decay. This preference brings them in contact with harmful bacteria and organisms that are too small to see without a microscope.
Some of the places cockroaches find rotting organic matter are:
On the side of ovens
Cockroaches Eat Animal Waste
It is unsavory to think about but cockroaches feed on waste that is deposited by humans, pets, livestock, and wildlife. Do you have pets or livestock animals that spend time in your yard? Their droppings can be a source of attraction for cockroaches. Cockroaches will also be drawn to cat boxes.
Cockroaches Eat Stored Foods
There are many food items in your cabinets and pantry that can be a tasty treat for cockroaches. They'll eat cereals, pasta, sugar, flour, and many other items. When they do, they can contaminate those items.
Cockroaches Eat Dead Skin Cells And Hair
When cockroaches get into your home, your stored foods are far from the only food source cockroaches will be drawn to. Another location cockroaches hang out is in bathrooms where humidity is high and there is an abundance of food in the form of dead skin cells and shed hair. While in your bathroom, it is likely that roaches will crawl on the rim of your toilet and on other unsanitary surfaces because they prefer the smell or decay. But, oddly, they're also drawn to toothpaste. It is a quick skitter from your toilet to your toothbrush bristles where they can deposit bacteria.
Cockroaches Are Attracted To Moisture
In nature, cockroaches are usually found in damp, shaded areas. This is because they require lots of moisture. While some species adapt to drier conditions, most cockroaches will be happier in a home that has high humidity or moisture problems. When humidity and a food source are combined, cockroaches thrive.
Cockroaches Find Filth In Tight Spaces
The behavior pattern of cockroaches brings them into filthy locations you may not even consider. Cockroaches love to be squeezed into tight spaces. They are the opposite of claustrophobic. In these tight spaces, they often find decaying material. They might nibble on grease that has dripped down the side of the oven. They might feed on organic sludge in your drain. They may find dried juice under your fridge. Deep cleaning is one way you can reduce the risk of illness when cockroaches have gotten into your home.
Now that you see some of the many places cockroaches can pick up harmful organisms and spread them around, let's take a moment to talk about their incredible mobility. If cockroaches stayed in filthy places, that would be one thing. But they don't. They have incredible mobility.
Did you know that:
Cockroaches can run across a table, run over the side, and continue on the bottom without slowing down?
Cockroaches can run up a wall and across a ceiling at full speed?
Cockroaches can compress their bodies to slip through gaps that are more than half their height?
Baby cockroaches can run as fast as adults?
How Dangerous Are Cockroaches In Maine?
The cockroach species we have in Maine are capable of spreading more than 33 kinds of harmful bacteria, 6 specifically identified parasitic worms, over 7 human pathogens, and their presence in a home can increase hospital visitations for asthma-related symptoms. They are definitely not good to have in your home.
For assistance with cockroach control in Southern Maine, remember that Big Blue Bug Solutions is always standing by to help you with all your pest control needs. It is best to deal with cockroaches as quickly as possible. We can help you with that.