Diseases Cockroaches Can Bring to Your Home

Diseases Brought by Cockroaches

With how unhygienic the streets of the Philippines are, cockroach prevention and control is extremely important if you live in the city. A cockroach infestation is extremely stressful, frustrating, and can actually expose you to multiple health issues. If food is not properly sealed or if one doesn’t practice good hygiene, then he can be infected. Below is a list of example diseases that cockroaches have been known to carry.



Cockroaches accumulate the salmonella bacteria in their bodies by eating contaminated food. The bacteria can remain in their bodies for a month. They are disposed of when the cockroach vomits or defecates which they can do on your food.

When humans have salmonellosis, they experience diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. These symptoms usually surface 12-72 hours after infection. With a constant supply of fluids, one can recover from this disease in 4-7 days.

Typhoid Fever

This is also caused by the salmonella bacteria. Typhoid fever is fairly common in areas with poor sanitation and limited access to water.

Symptoms of typhoid fever include high temperature, head and muscle aches, constipation, diarrhea, exhaustion, and stomach pain. With the correct medical treatment, one can recover in 3-5 days. Failure to do so can lead to serious complications.


Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection that is caused by the Vibrio cholera bacterium. It is common in areas with poorly managed environments.

Just like Salmonella, the disease is spread when cockroaches with the bacteria vomit and defecate on food and surfaces that get into contact with food. Although 80% of infected people do not experience any symptoms, the bacteria will be present in their feces for 1-10 days. For the 20% of people that do develop symptoms, 80% of them experience mild to moderate symptoms while the rest develop acute water diarrhea that leads to severe dehydration. There are 28,000-142,000 deaths recorded per year due to cholera.


This is a type of gastroenteritis which causes diarrhea with blood. This is acquired consuming foods or drinks with shigella bacteria or entamoeba, and poor hand hygiene. Symptoms of this disease include diarrhea with blood and mucus, painful stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, and a high temperature. Although the symptoms may seem harsh, a person infected with the disease could recover within a week without medical treatment.

The disease has two types:

  • Bacillary: aka shigellosis, caused by the shigella bacteria
  • Amoebic: found in tropical areas, caused by Entamoeba


Cockroaches have also been known to carry bacillus mycobacterium leprae which causes leprosy. While this is not high infectious, failure to treat this could lead to permanent damage to the skin, nerves, eyes, and skin. The damage could be as severe as disfigurement and deformities.

Since leprosy incubates for 5 years, symptoms may take as long as 20 years in order to appear. Treatment of this is multidrug therapy or MDT. These are just a few of the multiple diseases that can be brought to your home and/or establishment. You and your loved ones are more likely to get infected with these if you have an infestation. If you feel that you have a cockroach control problem, call a professional right away.