18 Natural Ways To Rid Yourself Of Mosquitoes
Natural ways to prevent bites and the potential health risks they pose.
Of biting bugs, none are more notoriously annoying than mosquitoes. Not only do they prey on human blood and leave behind itchy red welts, they can also leave behind a risk of disease. Worldwide, these pesky pests are responsible for serious diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, and chikungunya, while the most common risk in the U.S. is the West Nile virus. These diseases can be transmitted to humans through mosquito saliva after an insect feeds on an infected person or animal and then bites you.
To prevent the risk of these diseases as well as the annoying itch of even the most harmless mosquito bite, many people turn to commercial insect repellents containing DEET. While these products are effective at deterring mosquitos, they can carry a number of their own health risks to humans, particularly children. Overexposure to DEET has been associated with headaches, memory loss, fatigue, weakness, muscle and joint pain, as well as tremors and shortness of breath.
If you are looking for ways to keep mosquitos away from you and your family without dousing yourselves in harsh chemicals, you came to the right place! We’ve compiled a list of ways you can safely and naturally keep those annoying little blood suckers at bay.
DIY Repellent Sprays
There are a number of simple, effective, and all-natural sprays you can make to keep mosquitos away. Following are two that are especially easy to make:
Mix 1 teaspoon of lemongrass essential oil with 1 teaspoon of eucalyptus oil and four ounces of distilled witch hazel in a spray bottle. Spray on exposed skin as needed and enjoy the great outdoors DEET free!
Mix 4 drops each of citronella essential oil, lemongrass oil, rosemary oil, eucalyptus oil, and mint oil with ¼ cup of pure witch hazel. Apply liberally and laugh to yourself as those pesky predators want nothing to do with you!
DIY Repellent Body Oil
Another simple essential oil that is loved by humans but loathed by mosquitos is lavender. For a super simple body oil that will repel mosquitos, combine in a bottle 30 drops of lavender essential oil with two tablespoons of a carrier oil (I use olive oil). Cap the bottle, shake well, and apply the oil to exposed skin. You will smell beautiful and be bug free!
In tropical areas where malaria is a big problem caused by mosquitos, nature’s repellent isn’t far away. Neem oil, extracted from the Neem tree is harvested in the same climates and used to naturally keep mosquitos off and thereby control the spread of the disease.
There are two simple and effective ways you can use neem oil:
Apply to the skin as a personal protectant
Burn it, by simply adding it to your citronella candles, tiki torches, or even kerosene lamps.
The mosquito repelling ability of citronella candles is widely known. Simply placing a few of these gently scented upwind from people on your patio can work wonders in keeping mosquitos from invading. While these candles are widely available and relatively inexpensive, there are a number of tutorials available online to make your own if you’re a crafty do-it-yourselfer.
One of the simplest and most effective DIY candle recipes I’ve come across is available at this link.
Rosemary to the Rescue
If mosquitos are a nuisance while you’re out barbecuing with friends and neighbors, there is a simple fix available. Try tossing a few sprigs of rosemary directly on the hot coals. The aroma emitted will keep mosquitos from coming near you and your grill and might add an extra little hint of delicious flavor to your dish!
As previously mentioned, mosquitos are among the few beings on the world that hate the scent of lavender. To make a DIY repellent to keep bugs away from open windows while providing a light freshness to your home, simply add a drop or two of lavender essential oil to a piece of cloth or ribbon and hang it in front of your windows.
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