Up until somewhat recently, there were very few reliable cockroach control methods available to both consumers and licensed pest control professionals. Insecticides have traditionally been the control method of choice for cockroach pests, but it did not take long before cockroaches evolved a resistance to virtually all insecticide formulations. Due to several research publications concerning cockroach-related health hazards, it is now clear that cockroaches serve as a significant source of inhalant allergens within homes. In fact, cockroach allergens within homes may be the primary cause of asthma in children. Because of the public health threat cockroaches pose, the pest control industry, public health officials, and medical researchers began working together to develop an effective method of cockroach control several years ago. The introduction of cockroach baiting systems over the last 20 years has greatly improved cockroach control within homes. Amazingly, studies have shown that one single cockroach control intervention using baits can result in a measurable improvement in the health of children who had been living within cockroach infested conditions.

One particular study involved 102 children who had been living within cockroach infested apartments. Half of the children had cockroach baits placed in their home, while the other half remained within untreated homes. Pheromone traps were placed within each home in order to gain a rough estimate of the number of roaches present, and each child’s medical history had been obtained. Cockroach bait gels were placed in 51 homes, and the other 51 homes were left untreated, but the residents of untreated homes were allowed to carry out their own treatments. By the end of the study, the homes that were treated with bait gels showed no signs of cockroach activity, while 20 percent of the untreated homes remained infested. The drop in cockroach infestations within untreated homes was due to control measures undertaken by residents. Children within the treated homes had much better lung functioning than those living in untreated homes. The children in treated homes also missed 47 fewer days of school due to asthma symptoms than children in untreated homes.

Have you ever made an effort to control cockroaches within your home?