Protecting Your Kids When Rodents Encroach into Your Home
A problem with mice or rats in your home is a dreadful development. If you’ve children in your home, the presence of rodents in your residence presents a two-prong health risk to them. First, rodents themselves present a potential health risk to your children. Second, commonly utilized rodent eradication products also present a potential safety and health menace to your kids. You need to have an essential understanding of how to protect your kids from rodents in your home. In addition, you need to be well-versed on how to protect your children from improper exposure to items and procedures you might elect to utilized to rid your home or mice or rats. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
Residential Rodent Infestation: CDC Child Safety Tips
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has established child safety tips for parents who find themselves dealing with rodents in their homes. These tips are not suggestions but directives. You really must follow these tips when it comes to protecting your children when mice or rats have made their way into your home.
- Keep your children away from rodents. This may seem like stating the obvious, but it is vitally important that you keep your kids fully away from mice or rats that have elected to move into your home. This directive means more than just telling your children to keep their distance if they see a mouse or rat. It means that you must keep your kids away from any area in which you’ve detected the presence of mice or rats. For example, if you’ve discovered evidence of rodents in your basement, the basement must be completely off limits to your kids until you are positive a mouse or rat infestation, and associated issues, have been rectified. Distance must be maintained from the animal and the space occupied because serious disease can be spread via direct contact with a rodent as well as through contact with rodent droppings and dried urine.
- Do not sweep or vacuum up rodent feces. Another crucial tip you must follow governs the manner in which you attempt to cleanup rodent droppings. You must not merely back out the broom and dustpan or the vacuum cleaner to cleanup rodent droppings or you run the very real risk of jeopardizing your health and that of your kids. Dried rodent droppings can easily crumble. Rodent urine can mix with dust and dry. In both scenarios, sweeping or vacuuming will result in rodent dropping particles and urine-infused dust becoming airborne. If breathed in, a person – including a child – might inhale a hazardous pathogen that can cause a serious health issue. (Examples of diseases that can arise from exposure to rat droppings or urine are discussed later in this article.) Due to the real risk rodent droppings present to children and adults alike, hiring a qualified, experienced biohazard cleaning company oftentimes is the advisable course to take.
- Eliminate rodents from the premises. Ultimately, your health and that of your children demands the elimination of rodents from your home. Once you address these preliminary issues, you can focus on eliminating rodents from the premises. You can either attempt to do this yourself or hire a professional exterminator. Rodent control professionals generally contend that when it comes to rodent eradication in a home the best tool is the old-fashioned snap trap. Bear in mind that a disposable derivation of this trap is recommended. The non-disposable version of a rodent snap trap can end up contaminated with bacteria or viruses. Other alternatives include a no-kill trap and poison, which are discussed in a moment.
Children and Rodent Poisons: The Risk and Strategies to Keep Your Kids Safe
As mentioned a moment ago, the use of poisons represents one way in which you can eliminate rodents from your home. The problem is that rodent poisons consistently present a significant health risk to children. In fact, annually over 10,000 children are poisoned by mouse or rat poisons every year. Fortunately, the vast majority of these children recover, but not without a trip to the hospital. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
Kids under the age of six are particularly susceptible to poisoning by rodent poison. Children in this age category tend to be particularly inquisitive and prone to put things in their mouth without fully appreciating the inherent risk of something like rat poison. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
The best course to lessen the risk of your children being poisoned in the process of eradicating rodents from your home is something you already should have been doing when you discovered you have a mouse or rat issue in your home. Specifically, you need to keep your kids out of the space in your home infiltrated by rodents. This needs to remain a constant course, including after the extermination process using poison commenced.
As a result of the risks and inherent challenges of trying to eradicate rodents from your home on your own, you more than likely are best served seeking professional assistance. A reputable exterminator can assist in safely and effectively eradicating rodents from your home.
Rodent-Borne Diseases and Your Children
There are a number of diseases carried by rodents (or their droppings) which you need to vigilant to protect your children against. These include:
Eosinophilic Meningitis: This is an infection of the brain. This is caused by what are known as rat lung worms, parasites that can be ingested via rodent feces that contain what are known as rat lung worms. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
Rat Bite Fever. Rat bite fever is caused by bacterium called Streptobacillus moniliformis. A child (or adult) can be infected with this bacterium in one of three ways:
- Rat bite (hence the name)
- Rat scratch
- Consumption of food or water containing rat feces
Leptospirosis: This is also a bacterial disease that infects children and adults that come into contact with rat droppings. Leptospirosis can result in a broad range of symptoms that include:
- High fever
- Muscle aches
- Abdominal pain
If the illness progresses, the consequences can be particular serious and include
- Kidney damage
- Liver failure
- Respiratory failure
In rare cases, death occurs. Those most prone to be hit the hardest with the consequences of this disease are children, older people, and individuals with suppresses immune systems. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
Hantavirus: Fortunately, infection by the hantavirus is not commonplace. However, if a rodent carries this virus, it will be present in the animal’s droppings. When droppings dry out, they easily crumble. When that occurs, dropping dust becomes airborne, carrying the hantavirus is a rodent is infected. A child or adult can contract the hantavirus by breathing in the dust.
Murine Typhus: This is caused by bacteria that are spread by the rat flea. Most people recover from this condition without treatment. However, in some cases, murine typhus can prove to be more severe. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
Symptoms of a mild case of this diseased include:
- Body aches
- Muscle pain
- Loss of appetite
- Stomach pain
In cases that become more severe, which is not likely the disease can cause damage to these organs:
Salmonella: A salmonella infection can be spread through exposure to rat droppings and urine. Typically, this occurs when these bacteria end up in food or beverages consumed by a human.
Salmonella poisoning (or food poisoning) as this often is called typically is unpleasant but not life-threatening. The symptoms of a salmonella infection include:
- Abdominal cramps
Children, older individuals, and people with suppressed immune systems are at an elevated risk to be hit harder by salmonella. "protect your kids from rodents encroach"
Armed with this information, you place yourself in the best possible position to protect your children from the dangers presented by rats. In addition, this guidance will keep your children safe from agents (particularly poisons) that sometimes are used to eliminate rats from a home.