Protect Yourself Against Mosquitoes Naturally
Mosquitoes aren’t just annoying pests; they can be direct hazards to your health, too. In addition to buzzing around and leaving itchy bites, the insects also carry deadly diseases. At the height of mosquito season with viruses like West Nile Virus on the rise again, it’s more important than ever to protect yourself from their dangerous bites.
West Nile has become such a problem in some areas that cities and counties have actually declared a state of emergency. This is especially true in Texas, which has had the majority for the outbreaks. Dallas is now considering spraying aerial insecticides for the first time in more than 40 years.
Though this is a common practice elsewhere in the country, many residents are concerned about the environmental and health effects of using chemical sprays. If you share the reservations about spraying insecticides in the air to keep mosquitoes away, check out these natural alternatives.
- Make a homemade spray from natural, nontoxic ingredients. Try this recipe: Mix 2 tablespoons of castor oil with tablespoon of aloe vera gel, 2 tablespoons of essential oil (lavender or lemongrass oil works best), and a squirt of water. Pour into an empty spray bottle, like a used and cleaned window cleaner bottle. Shake well, and it’s ready to go!
- Control standing water sources. This is where mosquitoes breed in the thousands. Bird baths, fish ponds, puddles, and the like are all prime breeding grounds. Empty or drain as much water as possible. If you can’t drain a water source, try pouring a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil on top to deny access to mosquitoes and larvae. Note: don’t pour vegetable oil into fish ponds; it inhibits oxygen flow and can kill the fish.
- Keep your yard clean and your vegetation under control. Mosquitoes prefer densely vegetated areas where they are protected from sun, wind, and rain. Keep your lawn well-trimmed and clear out piles of brush where moisture can accumulate. Rake up leaves and dispose of them when they start accumulating.
Mosquitoes are really too numerous to completely eliminate in any practical manner. However, with these tips you can severely limit your exposure to mosquitoes and their dangerous diseases naturally.