In a recent special aired by NBC News, the spotlight was turned on to the childhood asthma epidemic and the indoor air quality factors that may be causing it. In their “In Plain Sight” series, NBC was able to spotlight those who are living in low-income conditions, which are often a lot smaller, tighter, and less sanitary than those of us who are fortunate enough to live in better conditions. With these factors, often come unwanted house-guests such as microbial organisms and pests. In this special, it was revealed that the presence of these pests not only will trigger the onset of an attack for those who suffer from asthma, but they can also cause the actual development of the disease because of their affects on the indoor air quality of our homes. Which pests cause these issues?

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Probably the most apparent pests that causes allergy and asthma issues are rodents. Rodents, while unwelcome in most homes unless they are kept as pets are definitely more of a problem in inner city conditions as well as often a pest for those who live in country setting, but mice can invade any home at almost any time, and with them they bring not only the topical diseases that they carry, but also their hair, dander, and waste that is often the cause of these reactions.

Another pest that often occurs more in dirty conditions is the cockroach. Roaches are attracted to food and temperature, and enter homes to find at least one of these needs. The problem with roaches is that they generally come in numbers and if the problem that you have persists long enough, they can reproduce and become a real pain to rid of. Everyone knows that roaches are gross, but they also can create allergic reactions in those who suffer from allergies or asthma, and being in an environment that houses these pests during development can cause the onset of these conditions.

And lastly, while not an animal or creepy crawly like the aforementioned pests, mold and microbial growth can also be a major cause of these severe issues. Mold can grow on pretty much anything as it thrives off of the materials that we use to build our homes. Though mold is very common for everyone, even those who are not living in inner-city, this substance can cause flaring of allergies and the onset of asthma attacks.

If you are experiencing these pest issues, it is crucial that you not only call an exterminator to get rid of the rodent and/or insect problems that you may have, but also call a mold remediation specialist to check for mold growth. If you find yourself living in a low-income area, even though the cost of a mold inspection may not be something that you want to spend money on, it is important to have your home inspected and indoor air quality tested and taken care to protect your health.