In Bed With the Enemy
The Chagas disease used to mostly affect South American and Latin America, but more and more cases have been found in the U.S. in the past couple of years. Chagas affects around 6 to 8 million people every year, and kills about 50,000. What makes Chagas so dangerous is that it can go unnoticed for years, until it finally attacks the heart, which can lead to heart failure. The number of people infected with Chagas in the U.S. has been growing, and now has reached around 300,000 according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Scientists thought until recently that only the “kissing bug” could transmit this deadly disease, but evidence was found recently that bed bugs can also transmit this disease. As if these menacing pests weren’t bad enough on their own. Now we find out they’re acquiring this potentially fatal disease from mice and passing it on to us.
This could spell disaster for the U.S. as bed bugs are so much more common than the “kissing bug”. Bed gus have much more frequent contact with humans, and when they infest a house there are many more bed bugs than “kissing bugs,” giving them a much greater chance of infecting humans. While ‘kissing bugs” only bite a few people in one home in a night, bed bugs gang up by the thousands to terrorize people.
Have you had any problems with bed bugs recently? Did you know they carry this potentially fatal disease?