Mosquitoes are one of the very worst things about summer, up there with thunderstorms on your beach day and power outages during heat waves. You can control mosquitoes with chemicals, but you’re probably not too excited about spraying that stuff right on your skin. You can protect yourself equally as well using natural mosquito bite prevention techniques.
Let’s take a look at a few natural ways to keep those blood suckers at bay.
Mosquito Repellent Plants Can Help
Did you know that some plants can actually keep mosquitos away? Well, the science on this is actually a bit flawed but some studies suggest that individuals were bitten far less if they were surrounded by certain plants. These include lavender, mint, garlic, and catnip. Whether it’s true or not, we like how these plants look around our deck, so it’s not a bad idea to have them anyway! There’s no need to do any heavy dutying gardening – simple pots of these lovely little shrubs will do just fine.
Inspect Your Surroundings
Bird baths and water features are wonderful, but standing water of any type is a breeding ground for mosquitoes. The little blood suckers can lay millions of eggs in as little water as what can fit inside a coke bottle cap. Can you imagine how many mosquitoes you’re breeding in that pot you never emptied out? You’re running a farm! Take a walk around your property and inspect areas that you wouldn’t normally think of. Look behind your shed and even under your deck. Are there piles of leaves or pieces of plastic that may allow water to pool? Has your dog dug a hole that may allow water to stand? Empty any standing water at all. Just doing this will reduce your mosquito population by quite a bit.
Wear Your White Tights to Prevent Mosquito Bites
Mosquitoes can’t penetrate tight weave fabric and so your exercise tights, including that long sleeve top, make for a perfect outfit for avoiding mosquitoes. Additionally, studies have shown that these bugs seem to be drawn to dark colors. Scientists believe that this has to do with the heat emanating from darker fabrics. Consider wearing white or lighter colors – this helps you stay cool in the summer heat as well!
Avoid Peak Hours
This, perhaps, goes without saying, but we all know that the mosquitoes are just the worst at dusk. Maybe this is the best time to head inside and cool down for an hour or so. Mosquitoes are most active just before the sun goes down. Avoid the outdoors then.
Just a Slight Breeze
Really want to keep mosquitoes and other pesky bugs away? Turn on a fan! A breeze of as little as one mile per hour keeps bugs from flying toward you! A simple ~$20 box fan or two from your local hardware store will keep you bite free.
Naturally Repellent Oils and Lotions
There are a number of natural oils and lotions that you can use to keep the mosquitoes away as well. Many of these salves and lotions are based on the plants referenced above. Check your local drugstore or outdoor outlet for lemon eucalyptus oil, tea tree extract, and lemongrass oil.
Natural is Always Your First Line of Defense
When you’re thinking about controlling mosquitoes, natural is always better. Citronella-based products do work, but in order for them to do so, you have to essentially be sitting directly in the smoke – that’s not good for you at all. And chemical sprays, like DEET are highly effective but obviously rely on spraying chemicals directly on your skin. Try these natural methods to prevent mosquito bites this summer, and don’t be afraid to call a local mosquito exterminator if you need one.