Health Threats Posed by Pests
Insects, just like humans, belong to this world and play an important role in the ecosystem. These tiny and minute organisms may look harmless to our naked eyes, but little did we know that a tiny bite can potentially cause fatal diseases. Dengue fever, Lyme’s disease, Japanese encephalitis and the like are some of the life-threatening pest health threats and diseases caused by insects.
Malaria and Dengue Fever
There are various species of mosquitoes like Anopheles, Culex, and Aedes and they have different behaviors on how they respond to their habitats and environment. The larvae of mosquitoes typically develop in the stagnant water like ponds, receptacles, and reservoirs. Mosquitoes are less noisy and it’s always too late before you noticed that they have bitten you. The bite is not that painful and often times happens through clothing.
Aside from malaria and dengue fever, mosquitoes also bring the deadly Japanese encephalitis, chikungunya virus, yellow fever and lymphatic filariasis.
Loa-loa filiaris, onchocerciasis and leishmaniasis
These diseases are mainly caused by different species of flies and midges. Black flies cause onchocerciasis and the sand flies result to leishmaniasis. Most of the time, how flies bite is not always felt unlike with mosquitoes.
Aside from the given diseases, flies are the common transmitter of microorganisms to humans. Contamination and spoilage usually happen when flies laid their eggs on food or in clothing. Various preventions are needed to avoid diseases caused by flies and midges.
The common human African trypanosomiasis is a familiar parasite disease caused by the unicellular blood-dwelling parasites, Trypanosoma protozoa. This disease is transmitted by the bite of Glossina or tsetse fly. These flies are exclusive in Africa specific to the tropical and subtropical regions. Sleeping sickness is a fatal disease that starts with complications in the lymphatic system and progress to neurological problems.
This disease usually begins as red skin lesions surrounding the tickle bite. Over time, the lesions will disappear but heart palpitations, paralysis, and joint pain can be felt. Severe cases are found in America and Eurasia mostly during May and October, wherein ticks are very active.
What causes this disease is an infection of a certain bacteria caused by Borrelia burgdorferi. Such bacteria are being transmitted to the body by a strong bite of a tick. Nowadays, antibiotics are used to treat this disease.
Other related sicknesses caused by ticks are meningoencephalitis, fever (Q fever, relapsing fever), ehrlichiosis and babesiosis.
Lice and fleas are the major agents of transplanting bacteria to humans. Some famous diseases caused by lice and fleas are trench fever (bartonellosis), typhus (rickettsiosis) and relapsing fever (borreliosis).
The way that these mentioned diseases change our way of life varies by region and season. Like some insects are active during summer and some are most numbered during the rainy season. Nowadays, these diseases are being treated by improved hygiene, vaccinations, and developed drugs.
Insects exist to balance the ecosystem and add beauty to the environment. People should be aware and do preventive care to avoid such diseases caused by these insects.