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Do Cockroaches Sleep?

Need to get rid of cockroaches? Read on to learn the answers to all of your important questions. Need help? Call our professionals today to get started.

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Do Cockroaches Sleep?

Cockroaches are nocturnal insects which means they are inactive during the day and active at night. Does this mean they sleep during the day? 

It does appear that cockroaches experience a period of time, every day, in which they become inactive. Much like humans (and most other animals on the planet), cockroaches have a circadian rhythm, an internal process that regulates when they sleep and when they are awake. Typically, 4 hours after it becomes dark outside, cockroaches enter an immobile stage that we recognize as “sleep.” 

According to scientists, cockroaches have three distinct states of activity. The first is a period of locomotion, the second is a period of limb or antennae movement without locomotion, and the third is a period of immobility. Under normal conditions, cockroach activity only occurs at night and ends just before midnight. After that time, cockroaches exhibit little activity, entering a period of immobility we might label “sleep” or “rest.” 

Where Do Cockroaches Sleep?

Outside, cockroaches find resting spots in tree trunks, under logs, piles of dead leaves or even under buildings. Inside your home, cockroaches will spend this dormant stage inside your home’s cracks and crevices, preferring to seek out moist and dark places. They have been known to hide under appliances, underneath sinks, inside light switches, inside bookcases and furniture, in curtains or other fabrics, and in your cleaning supplies. 

Why Do Cockroaches Sleep? 

Like humans, cockroaches need a certain amount of rest to remain functioning properly. If cockroaches are deprived of this period of rest, their functionality decreases, and, like us, can be found sleeping in strange places at abnormal times. This can be dangerous for cockroaches because it can leave them vulnerable to predators. Sleep deprivation in cockroaches has been shown, in laboratory conditions, to be detrimental enough to cause death.

Do Cockroaches Sleep On Their Backs?

If you have found a cockroach that isn’t moving and it is lying on its back, chances are, it is either dead or close to death. When cockroaches die, they lose the ability to control their muscles. As a result, their leg muscles contract, causing their legs “fold” underneath their bodies. If you have found a cockroach on its back that moves when you touch it, it is not in a state of sleep, but rather about to expire. 

If you are finding many roaches lying on their backs in your home, you may have an advanced infestation, causing cockroaches to leave their hiding spots to die (a natural behavior). To get your cockroach problem under control, call a pest control specialist who can examine your roach issue and make a plan to eliminate them safely from your home.

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The creator of this review received compensation by RMICPA, LLC on behalf of Terminix®. This review is the opinion of its creator and its claims are not endorsed or evaluated by RMICPA, LLC.

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