Termites are feared for the property damage they cause. What is often not considered is the effect they can have on the inhabitants of a home, including the pets. Termites do not themselves carry diseases that can affect humans and animals. Unlike mosquitoes and other parasites, they feed off cellulose, not human blood, so they do not directly spread diseases. However, they can indirectly cause various health problems.
Stings: Although not common, termites can sting humans and pets. The stings are very painful and cause severe localized itching and swelling of tissues. While the pain and swelling generally disappears after a few days;if it persists or if you are very sensitive to insect bites, it is advisable to contact a doctor.
Asthma: Termite infestation causes wood to decompose which often results in the appearance of mold spores and their spread inside a house. If these are inhaled they can cause breathing problems. Those who are prone to asthma will often experience the typical symptoms of the condition like wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath and tightness of the chest.
Contact Dermatitis: If the mold comes in contact with the skin, a painful red rash known as contact dermatitis can develop. The effect of the contact could be almost immediate or it could develop over time with repeated contacts. The rash is usually localized to the area that came into contact with the mold spores and will have clearly defined borders.
Allergies: Termite droppings are in the form of small pellets, also known as frass. These are harmful to human health. These droppings can often be difficult to see and can be found all over the house. For example, termite activity in the ceiling can cause the pellets to fall onto a bed or carpet where they could be almost invisible. Or they could be on a window sill from where they can be carried by the breeze to all corners of a home. These pellets can cause all kinds of allergic reactions, often requiring medical treatment.
Pets: Just like humans, dogs too can be affected by termite bites. The sting can cause swelling and inflammation or result in contact dermatitis. If the dog has a thick coat, spotting the problem is difficult but if left untreated the dog will scratch it and this could result in a more serious infection.
Termites are among the most difficult of pests to control. They are tough and very persistent. Even if you think you have gotten rid of them, there are often enough that remain to form a new colony and start doing damage all over again. Even if they are completely eradicated, unless the right measures are taken, they can return in a surprisingly short period of time. Doing your own DIY termite control is a good thing, but it is usually not enough to provide your home and family with the complete protection they need. For this, you need the services of a professional termite control company that has the experience and technology to offer you the maximum possible protection. Expert termite control is an additional insurance for your home and your family’s health.