Do Common House Roaches Bite?

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If the sight of a roach scuttling across the floor makes your flesh crawl, then the thought of being bitten by one might make you run for a shower. While it does not happen often, common house roaches can bite people.

Common house roaches can bite people.
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Common cockroaches found in most houses are not aggressive. They do not bite humans or pets either as an attack or a defense mechanism. If a building is overwhelmingly infested with cockroaches, they might grow desperate enough for food to try feeding on dead skin or the nails on a human. If this happens, the roach might accidentally bite the human on which it is feeding.

Roaches' bites are accidental.
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Unless you are allergic to cockroaches, a roach bite is a minor wound that will not cause any lasting damage. Roaches are a more serious threat to your home and family in other ways. They make you waste food by contaminating it; when you see them in a box of cereal, the whole box must be trashed. Roaches leave behind a trail of discoloring, foul smelling liquid. This trail can ruin fabric, paper and books.

Anything the roach comes in contact with should be washed or even thrown away.
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To get rid of common house roaches, remove their sources of food. Store all food in airtight containers. Use borax, a natural compound that is relatively nontoxic for people and pets, against them. Borax acts like a stomach poison on insects like ants, termites and roaches. Combine equal parts powdered sugar and borax, then add enough water to form a thick paste. Put on gloves and roll the paste into small balls. Place them in areas where you have seen roaches but out of reach of pets and children. The roaches will be attracted to the sugar and get killed by the borax.

Keep foods stored in containers away from open areas.
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Prevent cockroach bites and infestation by keeping roaches out of your home. Make your kitchen less attractive to them by cleaning up dirty dishes and food waste immediately after meals. Sweep spilled dog food out of cabinets and clean up around pet dishes. Seal cracks in your home's walls near the foundation, and sprinkle borax on the ground around the foundation.

Keep your home clean to avoid unwanted pests.
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References

  • "Encyclopedia of Entomology"; John L. Capinera; 2009
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