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Are Termites In Auburn Harmful To Humans?

Serving Customers Throughout Alabama & Georgia
Termite crawling in a home.

Auburn is home to two termite types. Subterranean termites, as their name suggests, typically live underground, but certain species may develop nests inside man-made structures. Drywood termites always live inside the wood they're feeding on. They commonly get into structures and stay permanently. There are key differences between these termites and their species, but we're going to focus specifically on their ability to harm humans. If you're concerned about termites in your Auburn property, here is what you need to know.

Termite crawling on the floor.

Are Drywood Termites A Threat To Humans?

Harm can be calculated in many ways. Some pests bite or sting. Some spread diseases. How do drywood termites measure up?

Bite — Can termites bite you? Yes. But they live inside their tunnels. The only way you're likely to ever get bitten is by exposing tunneling and picking some termites up with your bare hands. But, even this may not be enough to cause them to bite you—still, we would not recommend handling them.

Pinch — In a drywood termite colony, soldiers are created to protect the workers from danger. They have been given formidable black pincers to do the job. If you expose workers and soldiers, you needn't worry about the soldiers and their scary pincers. They can't perceive you as a threat and they won't gather together to attack you. If you handle one, it might try to pinch you, but its pincers aren't strong enough to break the skin.

Allergies — The unique challenge with drywood termites is that they can cause some people to have an allergic reaction. When they infest a home, they produce a material called frass. This material is a mixture of droppings, shed skins and dust. If you are allergic, you can have symptoms when you come in contact with frass, or when you inhale air-borne particulates. Symptoms range from itchy skin and eye irritation to respiratory issues. Drywood termites can be a particular issue if you suffer with asthma.

Mold — A secondary threat that drywood termites can cause is the spread of mold and the catalyst for mold creation. Drywood termites attack hardwood and may do damage that allows rainwater into a home. This can lead to mold. The workers may then spread mold spores around as they do their work. If mold spores get into ventilation ducts or other key areas, they can cause medical issues for residents.

Economic — Drywood termites can harm your finances, and this can harm you indirectly. The structural damage they do can be frustrating and difficult to repair.

Are Subterranean Termites A Threat To Humans?

Now that we've discussed how drywood termites can be a threat, let's compare them to subterranean termites.

Bite — Just like drywood termites, these termites could bite you, but it isn't likely that you'll ever be exposed to them unless you break into wood that these insects are feeding on.

Pinch — The soldiers of a subterranean termite colony have the same job as the soldiers of a drywood termite colony, but the threat they present to you is negligible.

Allergies — Subterranean termites do not produce frass. This significantly sets them apart from drywood termites. They keep their feces on the inside of their tunnels. While this will prevent them from being an allergy threat, it sets them up to be more dangerous to you economically.

Mold — If subterranean termites are exposed to mold inside rotting wood that has been damaged by water, they don't help to expose you to it, but the damage they do can eventually increase mold issues in your home.

Economic — Subterranean termites are incredibly sneaky insects that do not provide frass as a warning sign. This makes them far more destructive. The annual price tag for drywood termites in the United States is in the hundreds of millions. Subterranean termites cost U.S. property owners billions of dollars yearly. Their ability to destroy your Auburn property can lead to serious harm, especially if you're a homeowner depending on the value of your home to be a part of your retirement nest egg.

How You Can Prevent Termites From Harming You

If you invest in termite protection for your Auburn home or business, you take charge of your future. You decide how much you're going to allow termites to cost you. You can even put the figure in your budget as a line item. No surprises. No heartache in finding out your property has been damaged for years. If you'd like help with finding the right termite control solution for you, we can help. Reach out to Prewett Pest Control today. We are your local termite control experts. We can help you protect your property, and your savings account, from the harm termites can cause.