Are cockroaches dangerous?

I just rented a cabin for the month and there are roaches.
Not many, but I’ve never found a 1-month cure for them. Takes 3 Orkin visits, I’ve found.

All my food is in 2’x4’ tupperware-style tubs and the fridge, so I don’t worry about that.

They do scatter when I open the dish cupboard, however.

If disease is the only remaining concern, wouldn’t I be safe? There’s no one living within a half mile and roaches stick close to home, as far as I can tell.

I can live with a few mosquitos and a few spiders and a few ants. Are roaches any different?

Ok… first off let me just say… EEEWWWWWWWWWWWW…

Maybe get some of those little trap things where they eat the food and then take it back to the rest of them… That seems like the best way to wipe them out. You have to find a way to get to the ones behind the walls. I’ve heard for every one you find there is 50 more behind the walls…Hmm I don’t think I’m helping here… :smiley:

Hmmm not sure what to tell you. May I suggest sleeping with a big stick and a light on…? :wink:



Speaking generally, no.

I’m not aware of any nasty diseases for which they are vectors, although there might be some. They very rarely bite (they can bite) and if they do you’ll be hard pressed to actually feel it. They’re annoying and, wherever they go, they poop. So watch that on your dishes.

I live in cockroach country and I just scatter a few roach motels around - I almost never see them. Soapy water (e.g., Formula 409) kills them, so don’t waste your money on Raid or the like. A shoe’ll do the trick, as well.

You should try “RAID-Max with Egg Stoppers”

They cost more, but there’s a separate tube thing you break so the bait is really strong and fresh. That’s the key, that they find it.

Your’re right that the stick to home, so be sure you put the bait right where you’ve seen them, not in every corner of the room like the instructions say, unless you get two packages.

What you want is Boric Acid (many brands, all alike), which is a powder that comes in a plastic squeeze tube, like an old diner’s ketchup bottle.

It’s safe around pets, cheap, and at every Ace hardware, and many drugstores.

Be sure you move your dishes first.
It’s not harmful to humans but must taste something terrible, I’m sure.

cover your ears.

You’re right in saying there’s no one-month cure. Roach eggs hatch in about 30 days, so even ones you kill now may have already dropped egg cases, in which case you’ll have a whole new generation to worry about in less than a month. Another kicker is that if you hit them with a spray they’ll drop an egg case if they’re carrying one. And the egg stoppers, as far as I know, are insect growth regulators, which will mess up the hatchlings and nymphs so they won’t mature sexually, but will not kill them and will have no effect on the ones which are already sexually mature and have already mated.

Some bait gel placed in corners and cracks and crevices where it’s dark and moist will probably help keep the immediate population down. Look under cabinets and sinks with a flashlight. You’ll probably see either the roaches themselves hiding out or you’ll see their fecal matter collected around those cracks (these are small, dark brown pellets that look like sand and will be sticking to surfaces where roach traffic is heaviest). Read and follow label directions.

As far as roaches being harmful, their droppings as well as the dessicated bodies of dead ones create airborne allergens that may be linked to asthma. Roaches have been suspected in aggravating other respiratory problems as well, although it probably takes a pretty serious infestation to cause a real problem.

I think bait works best (I’m a professional, by the way), so limit the competitive food sources as much as possible. Keep your food in sealed containers, wash your dishes immediately after use (and maybe before using, if the little devils are in the cabinet with them), don’t let grease build up on countertops and cooking surfaces and keep your garbage covered.

Also, make sure you don’t bring any back home with you! Roaches are notorious hitch-hikers, and the last thing you want is to infest your permanent living space with the little rotters. Pack carefully, and clean your things out (suitcases and boxes included) thoroughly when you get home.

Oh, and have a nice vacation.


Hitchhiking home?

I sure wish I’d opened the cupboards before I rented.

Well, I guess if I’m not alergic, I’m safe enough.

Thanks for all the tips, guys.

Hey—who are you and why are you using Ukulele Ike’s alternate nickname?

—“Penny Dreadful”

I think the little label on their back reads “Not to be used internally”.

I found a partial cure for a couple of the critters.

We left out frypans soaking in the sink last night.
This morning there were roaches floating in the suds.

I guess it was dry enough here they got a little too thirsty.

Worth a try again tonight. Get 'em while the gittin’s good.


Willie, that is like spitting in the ocean. As an earlier poster on this thread mentioned, for every one you see in the sink, there are about 50 more hiding in the walls. Hie yourself to the nearest hardware store, find some bait gel syringes and daub the stuff into the cracks and crevices under the sink. A little dab’ll do ya, no need to go at it like you’re caulking a bathtub. And while you’re at it, see if the upper cabinets are shimmed out from the wall. Dollars to doughnuts they’re hiding behind there as well.

No, cockroaches are pretty harmless. Unless seeing one causes you to have a panic attack.