Unwelcome sight pests that you find in your home or office could pose a more serious threat to your health and well-being. Pests transmit disease by biting or stinging, others pick up disease-causing bacteria and parasites as a result of their less than hygienic nesting and feeding habits and contaminating the surfaces and food that we then touch and consume
Bed bugs are not known to spread disease. Bed bugs can be an annoyance because their presence may cause itching and loss of sleep. Sometimes the itching can lead to excessive scratching that can sometimes increase the chance of a secondary skin infection.
Tapeworms are intestinal parasites that inhabit the gastrointestinal tract of rats. There are two types of rat tapeworm, Hymenolepis nana and H. diminuta. H. nana is the most common as it can have a complete life-cycle in human intestines and spread from person to person through eggs in feces.
Cockroach will eat virtually anything ranging from food spills on a kitchen floor to fecal matter. Ingested bacteria can survive in the cockroach's digestive system, sometimes for months or even years, and are passed in its droppings. Cockroaches will vomit and defaecate on food and it is thought that disease may be transmitted to humans when humans eat food contaminated by cockroaches.
Spiders do not often enter homes, except as pets, but are frequently spotted outdoors throughout the Tucson area. They are not dangerous, but their bite can be painful, and many people are afraid of their large size. Numerous other types of spiders make their homes inside human habitats. Arizona is home to both the black widow and the brown recluse. These spiders have dangerous bites, making it important to seek medical treatment right away.
Scorpions are considered venomous, though most have a sting no worse than a bee sting. The smallest Arizona scorpion is also the most dangerous, the bark scorpion. Only about 2 to 3 inches long including the tail, bark scorpions inject a highly toxic venom that causes intense pain and, in some cases, breathing difficulties and even convulsions. Swift medical treatment is always recommended for a bark scorpion sting.
Ants are a major problem throughout the United States, and Tucson is no exception. Among the most damaging are fire ants, which have a painful sting, and carpenter ants, which tunnel into damp wood to build their nests. Although they do not eat wood, carpenter ants can wreak havoc in moist areas such as bathrooms and kitchens.