Common household pests like mice, roaches, and rats aren’t just surprising to find in your home; they also pose a number of health risks. Here are three of the most common health effects of household pests, signs to look for, and how to prevent them from affecting you and your family.


Hantaviruses are a family of viruses which are mainly spread by rodents’ urine, feces, and saliva, causing Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) in humans. According to the CDC, the most critical hantavirus in the United States is the Nombre virus, which is spread by one of Long Island’s most common rodent home intruders: the deer mouse.

HPS, as mentioned above, is a serious and sometimes even fatal illness that humans can contract after becoming infected with a hantavirus. Early symptoms include fatigue, fever, and muscle aches, especially in the thighs, hips, back, and shoulders; additional symptoms may include headache, dizziness, chills, and digestive issues. Late symptoms (around 10 days after the onset of illness) tend to include coughing and shortness of breath.


Salmonella is a bacteria group which lives in the intestinal tract of a variety of animals; this bacteria in turn causes Salmonellosis. Typically, salmonella is transmitted through eating food that’s contaminated. For example, if a mouse or rat with salmonella contaminates a food or water source which is in turn used to prepare a dish eaten by a human, the illness could easily be transmitted.

In humans, a salmonella infection may cause diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps, though often, people with a salmonella infection may not show any signs at all. 

Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is another illness caused by a common pest Long Island homeowners deal with: the tick. Essentially, a tick carrying the Lyme disease bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi will attach itself to a human and transmit the bacteria through a blood-sucking bite. 

The early signs of Lyme Disease can include fever, chills, headache, fatigue, body aches, swollen lymph nodes, or a red bullseye-like rash called the erythema migrans rash. Later, more severe signs of Lyme disease include severe headaches, stiffness, loss of muscle tone and/or drooping on one side of the face, arthritis, heart palpitations, nerve pain, inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, and more.

Protect Your Family from Household Pests

To best protect yourself and your family, the CDC recommends an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach to prevent common household pests before they pose serious health risks. 

Suburban Exterminating’s IPM methodology may include:

  • Inspection of your home to locate pest infestations and high-risk areas
  • Selection and application of the right pest control products to target existing pest control issues 
  • Placement of exterior rodent bait stations
  • Family and pet-safe solutions

Protect your family from pests—schedule a free pest control inspection for your Long Island home now by calling or texting (631) 910-6672.

3 Illnesses Caused By Household Pests Serving Long Island and surrounding areas

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