The cooler temperatures that winter ushers in make allergy sufferers feel a little better, because pollen levels take a serious nosedive. Still, it doesn’t mean an end to all allergies. Indoor allergens, including cats, dogs, dust mites, mold, and cockroach droppings – yes, cockroach droppings – can present a threat to your family’s health.
What do pests have to do with allergies, you might ask? Plenty, as it turns out.
A study conducted by the National Pest Management Association and the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America found that nearly nine out of 10 allergists surveyed believe a pest-free home is an important first step in preventing asthma and allergy symptoms.
The survey also revealed that 76 percent of allergists surveyed indicate that, aside from dust mites, cockroaches are the most problematic pest for patients who suffer from asthma and allergies.
Many people know that cockroaches can contaminate and spoil food, but may wonder how these pests can cause asthma and allergy problems. The answer is that the allergens that cockroaches leave behind inside a home linger in the air or settle as dust.
Those allergens become airborne when the air is stirred up by movement, like children playing or running through the house, during home renovation projects, or even dusting furniture.
Determining if a person with persistent asthma is allergic to cockroaches can only be made by a skin test performed by a health care professional. They will scratch or prick the skin with cockroach extract, and if redness, an itchy rash, or swelling appear, then it’s likely the person is allergic to cockroaches.
How can homeowners protect themselves from pest-related asthma and allergies? We recommend using strict IPM techniques which attaches the root cause of the problem – the cockroach.
Withe over 40 years of experience Stafford Unlimited have the experience needed to prevent and eliminate cockroaches from inside customers’ homes, and has put together the following checklist to your home cockroach (and allergy) free:
The Cockroach Prevention Checklist
- Keep kitchen counters, sinks, tables, floors, cabinets, and pantries clean and free of clutter
- Clean dishes, crumbs, and spills right away – cockroaches love grease and waste
- Store food in airtight containers where cockroaches cannot access it
- Seal cracks or openings around home foundations and inside cabinets
- Eliminate excess moisture buildup (e.g., a leaky faucet)
- Inspect packages, school backpacks, or laundry bins for signs of cockroaches and other pests. Don’t be afraid to give items a good shake!
- Keep the landscape plants next to your house trimmed and don’t use too much mulch, as it provides an ideal harborage for cockroaches