It’s Not Just Flu Season. How Pests Get You Sick Too.

pests get you sick

Both the flu and the common cold are no laughing matter—we all try to avoid getting sick whenever we can! It makes us feel awful, we risk passing it on to our loved ones, and we may have to miss work or fun plans because of it. 

But your sneezing coworker isn’t the only thing you should avoid this winter. Did you know that many kinds of common household pests can spread disease or get you sick? That’s right! Keep reading for more information. 

Can Pests Get You Sick?

When we think about catching something, we usually think about our fellow humans. But the reality is there are several kinds of pests that can get you sick. Let’s dive into some of the most common ones, and how you can take preventive measures this winter!


These pests are particularly famous for their survival skills. It takes some special knowledge to get rid of them because they’re so well-adapted to living with humans. And while they aren’t particularly linked to any specific disease outbreaks, they are an allergen source and can trigger asthma symptoms. So, if you find yourself sneezing or coughing in your home more than usual, it could be a roach problem. 

The most important thing you can do to prevent cockroaches from taking up residence in your home is to stop them from coming in. Carefully inspect anything that you carry inside your home—whether it’s grocery bags, cardboard boxes, or holiday decorations. Sealing any cracks or crevices around your home where they might sneak in will help, too. Also be sure to put food away and clean up any crumbs or spills as soon as you can. 


Unlike cockroaches, rodents are linked to specific disease outbreaks including plague, murine typhus, leptospirosis, and more. They’re not the kind of house guests you want! Getting rid of them can be difficult, as they’re very intelligent and learn to be wary of things like traps and poison. 

One of the most effective strategies for getting rid of rodents is to eliminate their food sources. That means storing food in airtight containers, taking the trash out immediately, washing dishes right away, and inspecting your home for crumbs or spills regularly. Removing places where mice or rats might breed will help as well. Any trash or firewood you have resting near your home should be removed and stored elsewhere. 


The housefly is considered both the most common and the most dangerous species of fly. Because they live so closely to people, are so abundant in the United States, and can easily spread disease, they’re not something you should take lightly! Typhoid fever, cholera, and shigellosis can all be spread to humans by the common housefly. 

Like a lot of the disease-spreading pests we’ve mentioned, proper home sanitation is the best defense. That means both denying the pests food and convenient places to breed. Take extra care when it comes to leaving food out if you want to get rid of flies. Throwing food scraps away and storing snacks in airtight containers might not be enough—rinse out cans before throwing them away, get all food particles off of dirty dishes, and take your trash out more frequently. 


While people may not have known it at the time, these tiny little insects are what caused the bubonic plague. In fact, while most people’s first thought when they hear “flea” is their pet, their second thought is probably the plague. So it’s not surprising that fleas can transfer other harmful diseases to humans as well. Murine Typhus, some species of tapeworms, and more can be passed onto people. 

The most important thing to remember when treating a flea infestation is that you need a blanket approach. That means targeting all pets and all areas of your home at once—otherwise the fleas can just move around each time you treat a specific area. Vacuuming and steam cleaning carpet will help, as well as getting any pets you have on flea prevention. 

When in Doubt, Call the Experts

Pests are far more than just irritating. They can cause serious harm to you and your family if they aren’t dealt with. If you’ve tried the recommendations mentioned above and are still struggling to get rid of an infestation, it’s time to call Vulcan Termite & Pest Control. We can get rid of even the most stubborn pests—keeping you and your family safe. Get in touch with us today.