When scanning the contents of websites dedicated to “wisdom and moms,” you will eventually encounter questions concerning child-safe pest control treatment. Ants, cockroaches, termites and other disruptive and destructive home invaders cannot be tolerated for long. Yet parents get nervous when thinking about possibly toxic pest management anywhere near the babies, with good reason.
Things Parents Need to Know About Pests and Pest Control
Pesticides can be harmful and children are more susceptible than adults. Your baby’s body and immune system are still developing. Even the fact that babies crawl rather than walk increases the likelihood of exposure to pesticides. And don’t forget how often children may taste contaminated objects, including their own hands. But while there are legitimate concerns about the safety of performing pest control around children, pests also cause safety and health concerns for children.
There are hundreds of pests that could invade your home and put you and your family’s health at risk. Researchers from North Carolina State University performed a study of home pests and found that there are over 500 different kinds of spiders, mites, and centipedes alone that could take up residence in a house.
All pests leave behind fecal matter and shed skin—two organic materials that can affect air quality and trigger allergic reactions in allergy sufferers. Cockroaches, rats, and other home invaders produce allergens that can trigger asthma and allergies. Fleas, flies and mosquitoes can carry germs, diseases, and bacteria that can contaminate food and other surfaces. Rodents pose a serious danger to human health and are linked to potentially serious diseases including salmonella, e. coli, and Lyme disease.
When considering your options for pest control in a home with young children, you need to weigh the potential harm from pests along with your pest control options. While no pest control is 100% safe for babies, there are options that reduce your risk, and there are precautions you can take as a parent to help ensure your family is safe.
What Are Your Pest Control Options as a Parent?
Many parents wrongly consider pest management mixed with child safety a problem with such limited options as these three, which in actuality can make pest problems worse:
- Temporarily get out of the house until after the pest problem is brought under control and the home is considered safe for children.
- Apply small-scale DIY pest control via ant baits, roach motels, sticky mousetraps or some other what-have-you pest management solution.
- Avoid dealing with the pests until the problems erupt into a full-scale pest invasion that MUST be handled.
Yet these commonly perceived solutions to pest management risks are based on various misconceptions. A couple actual truths are that:
- Not all forms of Carolina pest control involve toxic solutions
- In the event of major pest infestations, few homeowners can effectively apply DIY pest management solutions.
Without effective controls, there comes a time when the health risks associated with exposure to household pests and related home contamination become unacceptable and potentially dangerous. Pests could end up triggering allergies for you or your children, even spreading disease. At the very first sign of pests, it is important to call in professional assistance so you can deal with the problem quickly and efficiently, before it affects your family’s health.
Baby-Safe Carolina Pest Control
There is good news for parents that are concerned about pest control and the safety of their children. Organic pest control and IPM (Integrated Pest Management) offer reliable control while also providing moms and dads the peace of mind that minimal or no toxic chemicals are in use.
Child-safe pest control is a major request for all parents. Although families want to remove pests from their homes, they want to do so using the safest methods possible. Carolina Pest Management strives for the most natural pest control possible and chooses approaches that best meet the client’s needs. Let’s take a look at some of the most common questions we hear from parents and the details you need to know before starting pest control.
Is Termite Treatment Safe for Babies?
Carolina Pest Management offers the greenest truly effective termite treatment option available, one that minimizes the risk for all household members and pets- the Sentricon Termite Colony Elimination System. The Sentricon Termite Colony Elimination System employs a non-leaching bait matrix using noviflumuron, a chitin synthesis inhibitor. Noviflumuron is considered a “reduced-risk” pesticide with a low impact on human health and is less risky for both children and adults than traditional liquid termiticides applied to the soil. Furthermore, Sentricon Termite Colony Elimination System stations are difficult for babies to get into, so they’re less likely to be exposed to the pesticide. Homes with babies and small children can use this type of termite control method to reduce health risks.
If you plan to use other termite control options, such as sprays or dusts, we recommend that you speak to your pediatrician first. Do-it-yourself pest control, especially the types that involve chemical aerosols, make it more likely that your children will come into contact with harmful chemicals. Sprays and dusts, leave behind a residue that may be unsafe for babies, for example. Discuss your options with an expert before using these methods, taking any recommended precautions to reduce the risk to your family.
Is Bedbug Treatment Safe for Babies?
It is true that some bedbug treatment options can be harsh and dangerous to children. As with other pest control issues, you should research different treatment options and take all due precautions to protect your family prior to handling a bedbug infestation. Not using high-risk pesticides is extremely important if there are babies in the house. Instead of using pesticides, companies can use green methods such as high heat exposure to kill bedbugs. While you and your family still should not be in the home when a heat treatment is applied, it is an effective approach that eliminates the risk of exposing babies to chemicals. Unlike harsher forms of bedbug control, high heat exposure only requires a four-hour vacancy period. However, depending on the severity of your bed bug infestation, pest control experts may recommend different methods for treating the problem. Contact a reputable provider like Carolina Pest for more information and a consultation on the best bed bug treatment methods for your family.
Are Indoor Pesticides and General Pest Control Safe for Babies?
Until deemed safe by your pediatrician, it is best to assume that any chemical could be harmful to children- especially infants- and the possibility of ingesting a chemical must be avoided. Indoor pesticides and general pest control options fall into this category and can be harmful to babies. To reduce risk, you should follow several precautionary steps:
- Speak to your pediatrician about the best pest control options for families with young children.
- Look for pest control options with low chemical concentrations or organic alternatives.
- Take steps to limit your child’s exposure to the pest control options you choose.
If you use any type of pest control product, follow all instructions and recommendations from your pediatrician. The product may require that children not be exposed to the treated area for a set period of time, for instance. Often, bait traps are preferred because they can be placed out of reach of children and they’re better at securing harmful ingredients, so children are unlikely to be exposed to them.
If you have any doubts about whether or not one of your options is safe, you should contact an expert prior to use. Pediatricians and reputable pest control companies like Carolina Pest Management can help you find the safest option for your family.
How to Discourage Household Pests
Prevention is the best and cheapest pest control method, and the safest for babies. Discouraging pests from entering a property reduces the likelihood that you’ll need to use pesticides or harsh chemicals. Every homeowner can practice preventive pest control. It’s as simple as making your home unappealing to pests. All pests need food, water and shelter, so here are some tips to make pests look elsewhere for basic survival:
- Immediately remove any and all liquid spills or food droppings
- Monitor the kitchen counters, floors, sinks and tables, leaving no traces of food and no dirty plates in the sink
- Routinely clean under the dishwasher, fridge, stove and appliances on counters
- Only store food in the fridge, freezer or in sealed airtight containers
- Once cardboard containers are opened, shift contents to sealed airtight containers
- Keep a tight seal on the trash container and empty the contents often
- Eliminate excess moisture, including wiping sinks and repairing any under-counter leaks as well as dripping faucets
- Clear the clutter, including stacked boxes, magazines and newspapers
- Vacuum regularly, including cleaning crevices and cracks
- Before going to bed, collect and seal all open pet foods
- Repair your home, sealing holes in screens, cracks in joints, and seals around windows
- Remove and replace any rotted or perpetually wet wood
- Trim away all trees and shrubbery that comes close to touching the house
- Examine your Carolina home for foundation openings that give access to pests, and then correct the problems.
Professional Assurance of Baby-Safe Carolina Pest Control
Removing easy access to food and water makes for the best baby-safe Carolina pest control. However, pest infestation can come in many forms. Bed bugs, fleas and other pests that thrive on human and pet blood can be extremely difficult to manage.
If your home is already under pest-assault, consider contacting Carolina Pest Management. Working out of regional Charlotte since 1939, family-owned CPM strives to make pest control methods safer, greener, and more effective for you and your family. We’re available to help with green pest control solutions to clients living in the Carolinas. Our friendly and professional team members are experts at choosing the safest and most natural methods to remove any pests from the home. Contact us today to learn more about our pest control services.