The insect season is beginning here, and will continue to get worse as the summer approaches. Here in Kuwait we are bothered by flies, ants, mosquitoes, spiders, cockroaches, and many other bugs too. Mosquitoes, ants and spiders are particularly annoying since they not only bother us, but also bite. Some people have allergic reactions to bug bites, and swell up when bitten, which can be extremely dangerous and, for a few people who have severe reactions, even life threatening. Luckily, here in Kuwait, we don’t have a lot of bees and wasps, but they are still present and we still must be careful. Cockroaches don’t bite, but they are certainly annoying and dirty. No one wants to have cockroaches in their home. Flies also don’t bite, but they bother us with their buzzing and they carry diseases as well. To be sure, the general idea is to keep insects out of our lives, but how can we do this without using dangerous chemical sprays and lotions?
In order to keep bugs off and away from you both at home and out in parks, zoos, at the stables, and in the desert, there are several essential oils that will do the job. All you have to do is make a light blend of one or more of the following pure essential oils in a base oil. Citronella is considered the strongest and most effective of all the essential oils when it comes to mosquitoes and other insects (including fleas), but also good are lavender, peppermint, clove, lemon grass, eucalyptus, tea tree, geranium, and cedar oils (if you don’t have the essential oils, the dry or fresh herbs will work almost as well). Olive oil is a good choice for your base and it is widely available here in Kuwait, and is good for your health (as are all of the above mentioned essential oils too).
Just take a few teaspoons full of the essential oil and add several drops of essential oil (not a lot, less is more when you are dealing with essential oils, so for every 5 ml (one teaspoon) all you need is three drops of oil (total), which isn’t a lot). If you have already been bitten, the best oils to use are lavender and tea tree. You can simply apply either or both of them straight out of the bottle. They are mild and I’ve never seen anyone with an allergic reaction before, but you might want to check by doing a skin test first, just in case. For post bite itch calamine lotion works, but the essential oils are much more effective. The faster you apply them, the more effective they will be. Along those lines, Skin-So-Soft from Avon contains citronella and is great for keeping off the mosquitoes. Some people also swear by vanilla! But they say it must be the pure, real vanilla, not the artificial type that is sold in many places. Popping some natural sage or rosemary onto your barbecue next time you have a cookout should keep away the mosquitoes without any problem at all. For flies, hanging little sachets of the herbs mentioned will generally keep them away.
If you are having trouble with bugs in your home, then there are several natural solutions to your problem that might help you get away with not using Fleet, Raid, or any of the other chemical sprays which can all be dangerous. First of all, if you want to keep the ants, cockroaches and other bugs away don’t feed them! While I’m sure you don’t do this intentionally, you are probably still doing it by leaving food around uncovered. Small crumbs are discovered by ants right away, and before you know it there will be an army of them carting off the remnants of your last cookie. If you have children in the house all the more reason to be careful, because not only do children get crumbs all over the place, but they are also very susceptible to bug bites. The bugs will have to go elsewhere if you don’t give them gourmet meals all the time. Then, if you still have problems, there are several natural remedies that you can try. Cedar will help in many cases, particularly with moths, and you can put cedarwood in your closet to ward them away, or you can get a cedar chest and keep your wool items in it for storage. If you are bothered by bugs in your yard, you can plant marigolds. They are easy to grow and keep the bugs away. For ants and cockroaches, spraying them with soapy water helps and even kills cockroaches (much better than those nasty sprays, don’t you agree?), but even better put cucumber peels or mint tea bags around the places where you see them, and the ants and cockroaches too will be far less likely to enter your abode. Some people swear by cayenne pepper, lemon, cinnamon, or coffee grounds as well. They say all you have to do is put a small line of whichever of these you choose (mine would be one that smells nice) and the ants won’t cross. Also, I bet you didn’t know that catnip is a safe cockroach repellent!
So, you see, you don’t have to put up with bothersome pests, and you also don’t have to put up with dangerous chemical repellents and bug killers either. Just look around your kitchen for some great and healthy solutions to your problem. And the natural remedies usually work better than the chemical ones anyway, so what are you waiting for?