Have you ever told your kids or your partner (or someone else who is shrieking in terror at the little creepy-crawly in the kitchen) that cockroaches definitely don’t bite? Well, you were wrong. And a cockroach bite hurts, too.

And without freaking you out too much, consider this: a cockroach is not JUST an omnivore, meaning that it will eat both plants and animals. They’re also nocturnal, meaning they do an awful lot of their nibbling when you’re tucked up in bed. And (brace for this one), cockroaches can even fly!

But don’t panic TOO much. Cockroach bites are actually pretty rare – which is why you’ve never been too worried about it until you started reading this. And a cockroach bite isn’t serious, either. Yes, the wound can last a week, and it will look a little red and angry, but it’s a simple bite that is otherwise pretty harmless and won’t hurt too excruciatingly.

However, that doesn’t mean you should roll out the red carpet for the cockies: cockroaches are filthy, they carry bacteria and spread disease, they trigger asthma sufferers and can infect your food with salmonella. Oh, and they poo absolutely everywhere.

Terrified of your next cockroach bite? We’ve got the lowdown:

1. All cockroaches bite

While that might sound like ominous, given that there are 30 cockroach species that could be living at your place, these little critters don’t attack just for kicks. They’re just looking for food. And, mercifully for you and your family, there’s plenty of that lying about at your house.

2. They could bite your mouth!

Ok, now we really ARE freaking you out! Unfortunately, it’s true: if humans do get a cockroach bite, it’s likely to be on a part of the body that has traces of food left behind. So that’ll be your hands and fingers, but also your mouth.

3. Does getting bitten hurt?

We’ve already said that the after-effects of cockroach bites aren’t terminal, but what about at the moment of being bitten? Well, if you’re unlucky enough to be awake at the time of the attack, you might feel a little something ouchy. But don’t worry: it doesn’t last long.

4. Know your cockroach bite symptoms

Are you going to write off that mysterious red lump as an unidentified insect bite? Because if your wound is 1 to 4 millimetres wide, bright red, a little nasty looking and pretty itchy, you might need to start Googling for a pest control expert because there’s an unwelcome guest (or 1000) at your place!

5. Is a cockroach bite ever dangerous?

While the good news is that cockroaches are not venomous at all, there is a downside here: cockroaches are dirty little critters. Because of that, it’s easy for that harmless bite to become infected – particularly if it’s itchy and you can’t resist scratching it.

6. How do you treat cockroach bite symptoms?

Unless a cockroach bite gets badly infected, there’s no need to rush to the emergency room or even a GP. Use some disinfectant to wash the area clean of any harmful bacteria, and apply ice to deal with any swelling. And for the inevitable itchiness, consider taking an antihistamine.

7. Get rid of your cockroaches!

If your house is fanatically clean, you boost your chances of avoiding a cockroach infestation by a factor of 10. But if it’s too late for a Spring Clean because an army of cockies has moved in already, you’re going to have to call in the experts.

Unfortunately, getting rid of your cockroaches is probably going to require more than supermarket baits. To really get rid of every last cockroach, only true professionals like the guys at Cannon Pest Management are going to do the job properly. Is a cockroach bite the last thing you need on your plate? Call now on 1300 025 948.

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