Even though Florida is home to mild weather for much of the year, the dips in temperature can send rodents searching for a place to stay warm. They often seek out our homes, where they not only damage property but can also make us incredibly sick. If you don’t call in the help of rodent control, you risk exposing your family to several horrible diseases.
4 Rodent-borne Illnesses
It’s imperative to be proactive about rodent control. Many of these diseases mimic other, less harmful things like a bad cold or flu.
1. Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome
Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) is a severe and sometimes fatal respiratory disease caused by hantaviruses. Hantaviruses are spread mainly by rodents, particularly by the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), cotton rat (Sigmodon Hispidus), rice rat (Oryzomys palustris), white-footed mouse (Peromyscus leucopus). And if you think you’ve got nothing to worry about because you are healthy, think again. This virus is aggressive and can quickly take down healthy adults, let alone children or the elderly. Humans are most likely to contact this virus if there are rodents in or around the home. One small bit of good news is that there are no cases of HPS reported that have been transmitted from human to human contact. It can only be spread from an infected rodent to a human. So if you were to become ill, you don’t have to worry about spreading it to your family. Humans contract HPS by breathing in the dust with rodent urine or feces, having direct contact with rodent urine or feces, or from a bite wound. One of the most common ways this happens is vacuuming. If you have rodents in your home, do not vacuum their feces. Instead, sweep it into a dustpan and dump it in the trash. It is certainly tempting to whip out the vacuum and be done with it, but this will make the virus airborne, allowing you and your family to breathe it in.
Symptoms Of Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome
At this time, scientists aren’t sure what the incubation period is, but victims may develop symptoms between one and eight weeks after exposure. Early symptoms include fatigue, fever, muscle aches, headaches, dizziness, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. About 50% of patients with HPS will experience these symptoms. As the disease progresses, patients can experience coughing and shortness of breath as the lungs begin to fill with fluid. Unfortunately, HPS is fatal in 38% of cases. That’s why it’s so important to get to the doctor right away if you become sick after experiencing a rodent infestation. It’s also crucial to call pest control services so we can take care of the problem quickly.
This disease is spread by bacteria, and its symptoms often are misdiagnosed as other diseases. It’s possible, however, to be asymptomatic. Like HPS, Leptospirosis is transmitted through urine and fecal matter from infected rodents. Though in this case, it’s from eating food or drinking water that’s been contaminated. You can also contract it through the skin or mucous membranes – for example, rubbing your eyes after coming in contact with fecal matter or urine.
Symptoms Of Leptospirosis
Patients may experience a high fever, headaches, chills, muscle aches, vomiting, jaundice, red eyes, abdominal pain, diarrhea, or the appearance of a rash. Typically, the disease lasts for about three weeks, but it could last for several months without medical care. Without treatment, it can cause kidney damage, meningitis, liver failure, respiratory distress, and even death.
3. Lymphocytic choriomeningitis
Also known as LCM, this one is carried by the common house mouse. In some circumstances, hamsters can even carry the virus, though they are not the primary carrier. However, pet hamsters could become infected if wild mice bring the disease inside. Like hantavirus, LCM infects humans by breathing in the dust with rodent urine or feces, having direct contact with rodent urine or feces, or from a bite wound.
Symptoms Of LCM
Symptoms usually occur eight to 13 days after exposure. This disease has multiple stages. Symptoms include fever, malaise, lack of appetite, muscle aches, headache, nausea, and vomiting in the first stage. Other symptoms could include sore throat, cough, joint pain, chest pain, testicular pain, and parotid (salivary gland) pain. During the second phase, patients may experience meningitis, encephalitis, r meningoencephalitis. LCM can also lead to an increased amount of fluid in the brain. This often requires surgical shunting to relieve the pressure.
In rare cases, infection results in myelitis – an inflammation of the spinal cord – and the patient could have muscle weakness, paralysis, or changes in body sensation. LCM has even caused inflammation of the heart muscle. Most patients with LCM will survive, and it has a very low fatality rate. But why take the risk? A rodent control treatment will nip the problem in the bud.
Spread by both rats and mice, this is the disease you’ve most likely heard of from this list. It’s a bacterial infection that spreads through the consumption of contaminated food or water.
Symptoms Of Salmonellosis
Salmonellosis symptoms present quickly after the initial contact with the bacteria – between six hours and six days. The illness lasts for four to seven days and causes infection to spread to the urinary tract, blood, bones, joints, or nervous system and can be severe. Children are more likely to contract salmonella as they are more likely to put things in their mouths or come in contact with rat or mouse urine or fecal matter by crawling around on the floor.
Find Rodent Control Near Central And South Brevard, FL
Don’t run the risk of contracting horrible diseases brought in by rats and mice. Call the experts at Flowers Turf & Pest Management. We offer the best pest control in the area! Our rodent control program will swiftly remove the problem from your home via our highly skilled team of experts. Please don’t hesitate to contact us. The longer you wait, the worse the problem gets. You can reach us at 321-254-1929 or contact us here. You can also read more about what we do and learn how to prevent future pest infestations on our blog page, where we post monthly articles. And you can always connect with us on Facebook, where we post the latest deals and service offerings as well as photos of our work.