Home Remedies for Getting Rid of Insects

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When you’re at a family picnic or enjoying a camping trip, insects can really become a nuisance. They bite, sting, and fall into our cups of Kool-Aid. However, you can still take an active stance against bugs when you’re outside. From avoiding bite of mosquitoes to preventing other bug activity, you should become familiar with home remedies to repel insects.

home remedies to repel insects

Causes and Symptoms

Depending on the type, insects are attracted to humans and their activities because they are seeking food, shelter or warmth. Most insects use their sense of smell and built-in heat indicators to find warm bodies and their next meal. Some insects, such as bees, come in contact with humans because of the scent of their bath and beauty products or the color of clothing worn.

When an insect bites or stings a human, common results include welts, itching, rashes, redness, stinging sensations, pain, and allergic reactions.

Home Remedies for Getting Rid of Insects

Insects have a knack for ruining a perfect summer day or for sending you to bed itching and scratching. When using an insect repellent, only apply to exposed skin and never to skin covered by clothing – it isn’t necessary [1]. Before you reach for a commercial bug repellent that often contains toxic chemicals, consider the following home remedies to repel insects:

a) Cedar Chips:

To keep fleas from crossing into your personal spaces, use cedar chips, which have a natural repellent that controls insects. Use cedar chips outside in the yard. To protect your pets from insects, fill a pillowcase with cedar chips and position under their bedding.

b) Diatomaceous Earth (***FOOD GRADE ONLY***):

Those who have diatomaceous earth lying around the garage can use the substance to repel fleas both inside and outside the home.

c) Alcohol and Red Cedar:

To make your own mosquito repellent, combine three cups of rubbing alcohol, 1 ½ cups of red cedar wood shavings, and ½ cup of eucalyptus leaves. Cover the solution and let stand for five days. Strain the liquid and store tightly in a sealed and labeled container. Simply, put the mixture in a spray bottle to use. This recipe will make two cups.

d) Garlic:

Before enjoying an outdoor activity, such as hiking or camping, rub a clove of garlic over your exposed skin. Make sure to prick the clove before rubbing – to extract some juice.

e) Cinnamon:

Choose air fresheners that fill your indoor spaces with the scent of cinnamon since flies dislike this spicy aroma.

f) Beer:

A mixture made out of equal amounts of flat beer, antiseptic mouthwash, and Epsom salts has been known to repel mosquitoes when sprayed on weeds, grass and around bushes.

g) Borax Soap:

For those of you with a box of Twenty Mule Team Borax Soap in your cabinet, sprinkle a small amount on the grass and lawn outside of the door to repel fleas.

h) Lavender:

A lavender sachet can protect your clothing by repelling moths. Flies and mosquitoes also dislike the scent of lavender. Keep freshly cut flowers in a vase to repel other insects. When outside, rub a lavender flower behind your ears, wrists and neck to keep mosquitoes away.

i) Thyme:

Repel insects that bother clothing by placing sprigs of thyme close to your wardrobe and linens. The leaves and flowers also make effective sachet fillings for dresser drawers.

j) Basil:

Crush basil leaves and rub on your skin for an instant insect repellent.

k) Fabric Softener Sheets:

Before you step outside of the house, wipe down your arms, legs, and other exposed body parts with a dry fabric softener sheet. Stash a freshener sheet in your pocket to use later.

l) Garden Repellents:

There are plants known to contain substances that repel mosquitoes and other insects. To avoid coming in contact with bugs while gardening, make sure to include marigolds, scented geraniums, catnip, citrosa plants, and rosemary as borders.

m) Potted Plants and Herbs:

In your patio and picnic tables in the backyard, arrange potted plants and herbs known to repel mosquitoes, such as basil, lavender, lemon thyme, Thai lemon grass, citronella grass, chamomile, and citriodora.

n) Remove Stagnant Water:

Mosquitoes gather in stagnant water and breed in pools of water that accumulate in old tires, kiddie pools, neglected ponds, small planters, and anything else that collects rainwater. To repel mosquitoes, empty items that have filled with water after a heavy rain.

o) Plant and Herbs:

Keep flies out of your home by planting marigolds, lavender, basil or mint around the house – especially on windowsill boxes. Flies also do not like the scent of cinnamon.

p) Witch Hazel:

Add a few drops of tea tree oil, lavender oil, or peppermint oil to witch hazel and place in a small spray bottle. When outside, lightly mist your body with the solution.

q) Pantyhose and Mothballs:

Keep bees away by hanging an old pair of pantyhose filled with a couple of mothballs in the places you frequent.

r) Pure Vanilla Extract:

Before going outside, apply pure vanilla extract to your pulse points to repel insects, as many bugs find the scent offensive. Place a small amount of vanilla extract on your wrists, neck, and behind the ears.

Home Remedies to Repel Resources
[1] http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/notes/Urban/repellents.htm