Cockroaches are some of the most common pests to be found in homes in the United States because they can live in a wide range of temperatures. The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology points out that over 60 percent of homes in the U.S. contain allergens from cockroaches. That number can rise up to as high as 98 percent in urban and highly populated areas.
Cockroaches are also some of the most disgusting pests. They’re known to carry a range of diseases with them, including the plague, dysentery, and gastroenteritis. Bacteria attach to their nauseating, unsightly skins and get carried all around your home. Because of the range that these pests cover, they leave behind a lot of waste. This bodily waste—let’s call it dust from now on—can come from their feces, slimy saliva, or just general shedding of their skin.
Some of the allergic symptoms cockroaches can cause include:
- Skin rashes
- Ear infections
- Itchy and watery eyes
- Postnasal drip
Cockroach dust is also known to induce asthma attacks, where you can find yourself constantly coughing and wheezing, having a general feeling of anxiety, and feeling tightness in your chest. It’s been reported that up to 60 percent of people with asthma who live in cities are allergic to cockroaches, making it extremely important to take cockroach sightings seriously if you have asthma.
What sets apart dust mites from the rest of the pests discussed in this section is that you can actually see the other pests. Dust mites are so small, however, that they’re invisible to the naked eye. The only way you can see them is under a microscope. Despite their size, 20 million Americans are allergic to them. They can causes irritating allergic reactions like watery eyes, a runny nose, and endless coughing.
Dust mites excel in room temperature settings from 68 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit. As unsavory as it sounds, these mites feed on your dead skin, and this can be found all over your home. In other words, there’s no place that dust mites won’t try to set up camp. Their waste (there can be a lot of it) is what causes the allergic reactions as it can mingle with mold and cockroach dust.
Various forms of flies have also been found to cause allergic reactions. Flies are known to harbor and transport at least 65 diseases, and they’re some of the most notorious pests when it comes to coming in contact with food. They can freely fly from plate to plate and restaurant to restaurant, picking up bacteria and cells from foods you’re allergic to and transport them to your area. Some of these species of flies include: