Cockroaches are repulsive. Having them around the house can cause anxiety. But people don’t just hate roaches because they’re disgusting.
Roaches are associated with filth and dirt so having them around the house can be one of the worst nightmares. If you have roaches infestation, then you should make sure that you’ve done your best to put it under control.
Having cockroaches around made me wonder if I’ve done the best to keep my house clean. So in addition to their disgusting appearance, are there any dangers associated with having cockroaches in the house? Can roaches bite me or someone in my family?
Can Cockroaches Bite?
These tiny crawling creatures live in hidden corners and crevices in the house. But they might crawl around at night and find their way to your body. Do they bite?
Roaches are omnivores, and this means that they eat meat and plants. When cockroaches can’t find lots of food, they actually practice cannibalism. They will turn to eat the weakest members of their family.
As a matter of fact, roaches’ diet is composed of anything that they might come across. They can eat pieces of fabric, glue, and pieces of furniture to keep themselves full. But the real question is – do roaches bite humans?
Although this happens on very rare occasions, roaches can actually bite you or any member of your family. Nevertheless, the bite of a cockroach is different from the bites of other insects like mosquitoes and fleas.
Why do Cockroaches Bite?
Cockroaches might bite humans if there is extreme infestation in the house. In these conditions there will be a large colony where all members are competing for food. It could be the case that there is not enough food for every member of the colony, which pushes the roaches to look for unusual food sources they wouldn’t normally eat.
When there’s enough food for roaches like rotten food, garbage or corpses of dead animals, they won’t try to bite humans. Roaches might bite humans intentionally if there’s food residue on your hands and face. They can also be tempted to eat some of the dead skin found on your extremities.
If there is infestation in your house cockroaches might bite your unsuspecting pets. You should inspect your little friends from time to time to check for bite marks and take the necessary actions. It is recommended to clean your pets after they’ve eaten their food to protect them from roach bites.
Nevertheless, if you find roaches you should make sure to fight them off quickly before the infestation gets out of control.
How is a Cockroach Bite Different?
Roaches don’t depend on humans to complete their life cycle. They don’t primarily depend on human’s blood as a source of food so they might spend their whole lives without biting any human.
The roach doesn’t produce any poison so the bite doesn’t sting. However, it doesn’t look different from other insect bites.
Which Parts Do Cockroaches Bite the Most?
Roaches will crawl mostly at night when people are sleeping. They might bite small pieces of fingertips, toes, nose, lips, ears, eyelashes, fingernails, and any dead skin found on your body.
People who fear a roach bite might choose to wear gloves and socks. Sailors used to do this at sea to protect themselves from roaches’ bites.
People usually ask “Do house roaches bite?” Not all of them do. Some species like the American and German cockroaches are known to bite humans when there’s a shortage of food.
Cockroach Bite Signs
Because they’re nocturnal, cockroaches are usually shy and will hide until humans are sleeping. At night, humans are at a higher risk of experiencing roaches bites.
Most people confuse bites from cockroaches with bed bug bites or mosquito bites. However, there are a few differences that can help you identify the difference once you look at a cockroach bite picture.
- These bites are usually bright red, just like the ones that you can experience from bed bugs.
- They’re typically larger than bed bugs bites measuring between 1 and 4 mm.
- Bed bugs usually bite several bites arranged in a straight line, but you’ll be able to find only a single cockroach bite at a time.
- Although the cockroach doesn’t produce any poison or toxin, the bite usually stays swollen for a few days.
- In many cases, the bite will resolve on its own. However, in some cases, you might experience a serious infection.
Are Roach Bites Dangerous?
Unlike other insect bites, roaches bites aren’t that dangerous. They can’t transmit any diseases through their bites and won’t lay eggs in human’s body.
Nevertheless, it’s important to treat roaches bites to make sure that your skin stays in perfect health.
- Roaches might not produce any poison but they feed on dirt and garbage so their bodies are full of germs and bacteria.
- Cockroaches’ bodies carry pathogens so they might transmit diseases through their saliva, vomit, urine, and feces.
- The proteins found in the saliva of cockroaches can cause a dangerous reaction.
- Roaches can trigger asthma and respiratory allergies.
Treating Cockroach Bites
The best way to deal with roaches bites is to prevent them in the first place. However, if you happen to suffer from a bite, you must act quickly to help the swelling resolve and prevent the infection.
- Wash the area with warm soapy water. This will help get rid of any saliva left on the skin which might trigger an allergic reaction later on.
- If possible, use disinfectant soap to remove germs and bacteria that have been left by the roach.
- Keep an eye on the bite to see if swelling happens. In case of swelling, use an ice pack or cold compress.
- Take an antihistamine to stop any itchiness.
- Lemon juice is a mild disinfectant and it also helps the bite to heal. Roaches also hate the scent of lemon so you might need to use more of it to keep roaches at bay.
- Use aloe vera to help soothe the skin. It also helps with fast healing.
How to Prevent Cockroach Bites?
There are cases when roaches are likely to get extremely hungry so they might decide to bite humans. This usually happens on sea vessels where there isn’t enough food.
Roach bites can also occur at home if you have a very large colony. Unless you get rid of all roaches and their eggs, the cockroaches will keep on crawling around foraging for food. To prevent roaches bites, there are a few things that you can do.
- Keep your kitchen and dining room clean. Make sure to remove all food residues.
- Sweep the floor to pick up any food crumbs off the floor.
- Wash your hands and mouth after eating.
- Avoid eating in bed.
- Clean your pet after mealtime.
Keep an eye on the signs that might tell you that you have roaches in the house. Take the necessary measures to get rid of them as soon as you see the telltale signs.
Cockroaches are filthy creatures that can quickly establish a colony to roam around your house if they can find food, water, and shelter. Depriving them of their basic needs is the best thing to do so you can make your house roaches-free. But if you already have them in the house, you should act promptly.
Can roaches bite? Yes, they can, but on very rare occasions. Identifying the signs of roaches bites will help you act accordingly. Make sure that you get rid of cockroaches quickly so that they don’t get a chance to bite you.