Diseases spread by cockroaches

Cockroaches live on food scraps, trash, and feces. Therefore, they can inevitably carry bacteria and pathogens that are dangerous to human health. Here’s an overview of adverse health conditions that cockroaches can activate or exacerbate in humans.

Intestinal diseases

Cockroaches carry harmful bacteria. When spread to your food or kitchen surfaces, these germs can include and cause salmonella, staphylococcus, and streptococcus infections. The most common disease spread by cockroaches is gastroenteritis, characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, and fever. They haven’t been linked directly to specific outbreaks, but cockroaches have been known to cause dysentery, cholera, typhoid fever, and polio.

Cockroaches sometimes carry parasitic worm larvae, which can move into the human body. People with intestinal worms have reported alarming symptoms, including diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal cramping, and fatigue.


Cockroaches are also notorious carriers of indoor allergens. If you have cockroaches within the walls of your home, you may experience allergy symptoms like sneezing, coughing, wheezing, nausea, fever, and muscle or joint pain. Allergic reactions can also present as digestive tract problems like diarrhea and vomiting.

People with respiratory conditions are particularly vulnerable. Both cockroaches and their egg sacks have been known to trigger asthma attacks. Studies have suggested that children are more vulnerable to cockroach allergens than adults. If your child shows increased respiratory issues, a cockroach infestation may be to blame.

Cockroach control for a healthy home

If your cockroach problem isn’t too advanced, you may be able to manage it on your own with a commercial cockroach solution. Try taking these preventative measures to prevent their return or avoid an infestation altogether:

  • Inspect items carefully before introducing them into the home
  • Limit excess moisture with a dehumidifier
  • Seal up cracks in floors and walls
  • Fix leaky pipes
  • Prevent cockroach access to drains and other water sources such as plant containers
  • Keep trash containers tightly sealed
  • Store food in airtight containers
  • Clean up crumbs and spills immediately
  • Tidy up clutter and stored objects
  • Make a regular habit of cleaning under and behind furniture and appliances

To ensure your family’s health, have a pest management professional visit your home and advise you on cockroach elimination and prevention.

Cockroach exterminators in Western Canada

Whether you need a professional to handle your cockroach problem or you think you can manage on your own, make Poulin’s Pest Control your first call. Residential and commercial customers in Alberta, Saskatchewan or Manitoba count on us to provide effective DIY solutions and advice, as well as full extermination services. If you’re unsure how serious your cockroach problem is, we’ll visit your property assess the issue. Contact us today to request an inspection.

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