Mosquitoes – All Thing You Should Know
They weigh less than a thousandth of a dime, travel just one mile an hour, and typically live only two to three weeks. But because they spread many deadly diseases (West Nile virus, dengue, and malaria, to name a few), mosquitoes kill more than a million people each year, making them the deadliest creatures on earth. And, as we all know, just one tiny mosquito can be a huge nuisance. Combat the little buggers this season by protecting your yard, protecting yourself, and treating bites with natural remedies. Here are three no-cost ways to enjoy a mosquito-free summer.
Don’t give them a chance to become parents
To lay eggs, mosquitoes need water, but it must have been standing for more than four days. Here’s how to eliminate potential breeding habitats.
- Drain any standing water that’s collected in garbage cans, old tires, potted-plant saucers, and buckets. Change the water in pets’ dishes daily; in birdbaths and children’s pools, every two days.
- Toss trash and recycle often—especially bottles and cans.
- Clear debris from gutters and storm drains.
- Repair leaky outdoor faucets.
Keep biting mosquitoes (which are always adult females) away from your house and yard.
- Adult mosquitoes like to rest on plants. Reduce the number of places where they can find shelter by pulling up weeds and mowing the lawn regularly.
- When you’re enjoying a drink on the porch, set up a rotating fan outside—mosquitoes are weak flyers and won’t make headway against a current.
Protect yourself, now that the garden’s covered
To keep from getting bitten, try not to schedule outdoor activities when mosquitoes are most active (usually dawn and dusk), and when you do go outside, use a mosquito repellent. Steer clear of products containing the chemical DEET; according to researchers at Duke University, frequent and long-term exposure may lead to memory loss, muscle and joint pain, shortness of breath, and brain damage. Fortunately, there are a number of effective, safe alternatives.
We road-tested natural, nontoxic mosquito repellents so you can have the buzz on healthier alternatives.
Alfresco Anti Bug Bite Moisturizer
Ingredients: Botanical extracts, including geranium, Melissa, and lavender
Mosquito Magic Soap Bar
Ingredients: Rose, lemongrass, cedar, citronella, clove, rosemary, peppermint, cinnamon, thyme, and mint oils
Quantum Buzz Away Citronella Towelettes
Ingredients: Citronella, cedarwood, lemongrass, peppermint, and eucalyptus oils
Ingredients: Purified water; soybean, coconut, and geranium oils; glycerin; citric acid
No Buzz Zone Patch
Ingredients: Citronella oil, gum arabic, carboxymethyl cellulose, ethylene polymer
Way Out Wax Hemp Citronella Candle
Ingredients: Soy wax, beeswax, and hemp-seed and citronella oils
Natural Bite Remedies
Get the Itch Out with these natural, effective bite remedies.
Studies suggest that taking 25 to 50 milligrams (a safe dosage for adults and children) of thiamin (vitamin B1) three times a day, starting two weeks before mosquito season, reduces your chance of getting bitten. The vitamin produces an odor on the skin that, though undetectable to us, is thought to be disagreeable to mosquitoes.
Treat a bite the same way you would any swollen bump: Put ice on it. The cold will reduce itching and inflammation.
Apply a dab of meat tenderizer directly to the bite to neutralize the itch-inducing allergen and reduce swelling.
Pour a teaspoonful into a little water, stir to make a thick paste; apply to bites. Helps heal irritated tissues and reduces itching.
Dab anything with menthol in it—say Tiger Balm or Vicks VapoRub—on a bite to relieve itching quickly.
But if you’re really covered in bites and they’re driving you crazy, use an over-the-counter antihistamine, such as Benadryl, which will provide quick and effective relief. You can take it orally or apply it topically in cream or ointment form.
Table of Contents
- 1 Mosquitoes – All Thing You Should Know
- 1.1 Don’t give them a chance to become parents
- 1.2 Protect yourself, now that the garden’s covered
- 1.3 Natural Bite Remedies
- 1.4 Related