Pests can be a problem no matter where you live. People all around the country have to deal with roaches, ants and even mice or rats. Most of the pests you encounter in a home are just a nuisance and are not really any threat to the residents. This is not always the case. Some rare pests are starting to invade the United States. These invasive species can sometimes make people very sick. The bugs are hard to find and harder to stop. One of the latest dangerous arrivals is known as a kissing bug.
The kissing bug is not native to the United States. It has started to appear in the state of Texas where it is invading homes. The name of the pest comes from the fact that it prefers to bite human beings around the mouth. Kissing bugs tend to be most active at night. They attack people who are sleeping. The bite of a kissing bug could leave a parasite under the skin. This parasite can cause a serious condition known as Chagas disease. The disease has mild symptoms at first and feels like a flu or cold. Unfortunately, it can progress. Around a third of the people who get Chagas disease will develop heart problems. One out of every ten will develop gastrointestinal problems.
Chagas disease can be fatal in some cases. There is not any known treatment for the disease. The best experimental medications have a success rate of just 85 percent. Most experimental treatments are effective only if they are administered right after the bite occurs. Kissing bugs look like small, tapered beetles with dark coloration, six legs and a light goldish pattern on the back.
Specifically, the CDC reports the following about kissing bugs, says NBC-12 News: