Home & Real Estate

Are Earwigs Dangerous? Separating Fact from Fear

Have you ever heard the tale of the earwig scurrying into a person’s ear to burrow its way into the person’s brain?

It’s a frightening tale, to be sure. But are earwigs dangerous? We’ll take a look at what science has to say and separate fact from fear.

Find out the truth about these curious critters and learn how to protect your home from an uninvited and unwelcome infestation.


Are Earwigs Dangerous?

Humans have always been fascinated by the strange-looking creature known as the earwig. While their appearance may be intimidating, they are actually harmless and beneficial in many aspects, despite the myths that have grown around them.

Earwigs may be strange creatures, but understanding their role in nature helps put fears aside and enjoy their presence.

Poisonous and Harmful

They typically do not bite humans and are not known to carry diseases. In fact, they are quite beneficial as they play a role in soil nutrition and help to keep harmful insects in control. They can become a nuisance if they become numerous and cause damage to certain gardens and plants.

Are earwigs poisonous? Contrary to popular belief, they are not poisonous or harmful to humans. The claws on the end of their legs serve as defense mechanisms to help them escape from predators. So while earwigs can cause minor damage to certain gardens and plants, they pose no danger to humans.

Crawl into Ears at Night

However, fear tends to arise from one myth in particular, in that earwigs can crawl into people’s ears. This is simply not true. Earwigs are more of a nuisance and can cause damage to plants, destroying delicate petals and foliage. In essence, it is best to separate fact from fear and practice preventative methods rather than believing the myths.

Pose a Significant Health Risk

Earwigs are generally harmless to humans. In fact, they are beneficial in gardens and outdoor spaces, as they consume a variety of pests, like aphids, that can damage plants. While some may find them intimidating due to their unique shape and size, they do not sting or bite, and their forceps are used only to catch their food, not to harm any living thing.

Some people fear that their forceps may pierce human skin, but this fear is based on misinformation; earwigs’ forceps are not strong enough to penetrate human skin. Additionally, their saliva is not poisonous, and they do not spread diseases.

Can Earwigs Bite and Are They Aggressive?

In response to the question, are earwigs dangerous, and do they bite? The answer is yes and no. Earwigs can bite, but their small pincers are usually not powerful enough to penetrate human skin. Some people may suffer a minor pinch or scratch if an earwig gets stuck inside clothing and attempts to defend itself.

The earwig bite incident is very low. While earwigs do possess the capability of biting, they are generally not aggressive. Earwigs are insectivores, meaning they feed mainly on decomposing plant material as well as other small insects.

They rarely attack humans, and if they do bite, it is usually by mistake rather than in the form of aggression. Therefore, while it is important to take precautions when dealing with larger insects, the fear of earwigs is generally unfounded.

Infestation: Prevention and Control Methods

Prevention and control methods focus on eliminating their habitat and moisture exposure. Yards and gardens should be kept free of debris and mulch, and outdoor lights should be switched to yellow bulbs, as earwigs are attracted to light.

Proper drainage should be maintained, and sealing off entry points to the home is essential if there are earwigs in the house. Regular vacuuming and applying a residual insecticide may be necessary. Finally, some natural approaches, such as diatomaceous earth and neem oil, can be used to deter earwigs.

Exploring Earwig Habitats: Where Do They Come From?

Most people are unaware of the truth behind earwigs, which is that they are usually harmless. Contrary to popular belief, earwigs do not lay eggs in the ears of humans or cause any harm to humans. In fact, they are beneficial since they aid in the control of garden pests. That being said, their reputation has been fueled by superstitions and fear. So, where do earwigs come from?

Earwigs are found in dark, moist areas, such as soil, compost piles, and mulch. They can also be found underneath stones, logs, and other debris. In addition, they may live in cracks and crevices of buildings and thus enter homes in search of a place to hide or find food.

When to Seek Professional Pest Control Services

Earwigs are nocturnal insects that can be found in many parts of the world. Though they look rather intimidating with their pincers, they are really not dangerous. In fact, they prefer to live in damp and organic habitats and rarely come in contact with humans. Their pincers, or “cerci,” are actually used to defend themselves against other insects of the same species rather than humans.

Despite their alarming appearance, they pose no real threat. As with most household pests, however, if you suspect an earwig infestation in your home, you should seek the best pest control professional for inspection or treatment. Professional pest control experts have the knowledge and tools necessary to effectively identify and address any infestations or potential infestations.

Take Action Now and Contact Professional Pest Control

Are earwigs dangerous? By understanding what earwigs are capable of and how to properly protect yourself, you place yourself to make an informed decision. Educating yourself more on this topic will ensure you and your family are adequately prepared should ever cross paths with dangerous earwigs. 

Avoid some of the fear by learning more from reliable sources. Take action now and contact a professional pest control technician if you believe your home is infested with earwigs.

Still want to learn more about maintaining a safe and healthy home? Check out the rest of our blog now for more helpful guides and tips.