Roaches linked to asthma

Exposure to cockroaches could increase likelihood of respiratory disease

A link between asthma and living in a home with cockroaches could partially explain why children in low-income housing are disproportionately affected by the respiratory disease.

Though researchers can’t say roaches and asthma are directly related, evidence suggests the more people are exposed to the feces and shredded skins of cockroaches, the greater the chance they will develop asthma, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.

A recent study found more than 26 percent of Philadelphia’s children suffered from asthma, nearly three times the national average. Researchers said the biggest contributing factor to children’s asthma in the urban Northeast is exposure to roaches. Further, the chemicals used to kill roaches only compound asthmatic symptoms.

Nationally, 13 percent of black children and 20 percent of Puerto Rican children have asthma, compared to 8 percent of white and Latino children.