Bats can spread diseases that can be potentially serious to humans. Even though this occurs less frequently than many people think, it is wise to stay away from them. If you have a problem with bats in your attic, hire a professional to remove them.
The most common health concern associated with bats is rabies, although its incidence has been exaggerated. Human deaths from rabies contracted from bats are rarer than deaths from dog attacks or many types of accidents. If you are bitten by a bat, wash the area thoroughly with soap and water and seek prompt medical attention just in case the bat has rabies.
Another potential health problem associated with bats is histoplasmosis, an airborne disease spread through bat guano, or droppings. It can have symptoms similar to the flu. More serious cases may be mistakenly diagnosed as tuberculosis. Many histoplasmosis infections in humans do not show any symptoms. Skin and blood tests can detect an infection, but a positive result could also be evidence of a previous infection. To reduce the risk of contracting histoplasmosis, bat guano should be removed by professionals with special equipment to prevent them from becoming infected.
Bat guano and urine can attract arthropods, including cockroaches, and ectoparasites, such as ticks, mites, fleas, and insects, but they generally do not attack humans. They may cause a nuisance and produce a strong odor, but they generally die if the bats are removed.
While bats can cause health problems for humans, they are not as widespread as many people think. Still, if you have bats in your attic, it is best to have a wildlife control professional remove them to prevent any health concerns to you and your family.