Bugs: Even the mention of them can be a hair-raising experience for a lot of folks. And, though it’s true that you would be hard-pressed to find anyone who would admit to actually liking the disgusting things, it’s easy to forget that they do serve a purpose!

Take, house centipedes, for instance. The one at the top of this article looks pretty innocent, but when you are taking a shower, and one randomly pops out of the drain, we bet many of you out there turn the nozzle on that sucker pretty quickly.

And, while we certainly do understand the inherent need to eliminate bugs from a happy home, it’s important to be aware of the benefits that this species of centipede can offer.

It’s all in their diet

House centipedes are considered to be the ‘good guys’ of the arthropods because their diet tends to benefit humans the most. You see, these creepy fellas love munching on some of our least favorite bugs and insects, like cockroaches, flies, moths, crickets, silverfish, earwigs, and small spiders.

Basically, these leggy wonders get rid of pretty much any and every arthropod that they can—and we tend to think that your house may just be better off for it!

Are house centipedes dangerous?

Though all house centipedes technically have poison glands that inject venom to help them kill their prey, they pose very little threat to humans. In the very unlikely event that one bites you, you may experience a very short burst of temporary pain.

If you’re a dog or cat lover, you need not to worry—their venom is also not nearly strong enough to hurt one of your fur babies. Simply put: these guys are a heck of a lot tamer than they look!

closeup of house centipede against black backgroundKevincollins123 via Wikipedia Commons

What to do when these creepy crawlies become TOO much to handle

Even though we would certainly never exterminate our multi-legged friends, we understand that there are some of you out there who have little to no patience when it comes to bugs having the run of your home.

So, if you feel that you just have TOO many of these house centipedes milling around, Orkin suggests drying out any moist areas of your home, closing off all points of entry, then leaving several ‘sticky traps’ in your trouble areas.

Many times, you really shouldn’t be encountering these centipedes in the first place, so if you do, it may just mean that you have too much clutter around your house. These arthropods are famous for laying their eggs in cardboard boxes, for instance, so the less of those sitting around, the better!

So, if you choose to spare the life of one type of bug, let it be this type. Think of it as a ‘lesser of two evils’ situation; more of these centipedes mean less unwelcome houseguests! Very similar to the argument for keeping spiders alive:

What do you think of the argument to keep house centipedes around? Have you had good results from letting them be? What type of bug could you never have crawling around your home? Tell us all about your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below!