According to studies mosquitoes are one of the most dangerous life forms on the planet that causes death of hundreds of million people every year. Mosquito itself work as a vector to the germs of various deadly diseases and it transfers those germs to the body while biting a human being. Mosquitoes can cause severe illnesses including, malaria, dengue, chikungunya, zika and the list is ever increasing. Hence, protecting yourself as well as your family from mosquitoes is vital in every sense.
To protect yourself from mosquito bites your measures should be directed in two channels. While it is important to protect yourself from the bites, it is also vital to stop breeding of these tiny organisms in your home and neighborhood. This article will discuss the topic under these two broad headings and will also provide you with information about the natural mosquito repellents that can provide you and your family better protection from mosquitoes.
Stop breeding of mosquitoes
Unless you are able to stop the breeding of mosquitoes in your home and neighborhood, there is always a chance of being bitten by a mosquito even if you take maximum precautions to prevent it. Here is how you can stop the breeding of mosquitoes in your home and neighborhood,
Keep your neighborhood clean
Keeping the surrounding of your home and other dwelling places clean and well lighted can be highly effective to reduce the breeding of mosquitoes. If there are shrubs in your locality, make it a point to clean the lower sections of the shrubs properly, so that mosquitoes cannot hide there. Well lighted places are not preferred by mosquitoes and hence by ensuring that sun light reaches all the area properly, you can control the breeding of mosquitoes. Spray some mosquito repellants in your surroundings to ensure that mosquitoes cannot breed in the neighborhood.
Ensure that there is no stagnant water
This is another most important point that you need to consider to control the breeding of mosquitoes. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water and hence ensuring that your surrounding is free from stagnant and dirty water is important. Make it a point to remove any stagnant water from your neighborhood. Clean the drains regularly and make sure that all the drains are well covered. According to the latest studies, some species of mosquitoes can even breed in clean water, hence if there are pools or ponds in your locality it is important to ensure that the pool or pond water is perfectly clean and added with ingredients that prevent the breeding of mosquitoes.
Keep your home clean and well lighted
Mosquitoes prefer dark and moist areas. Keeping your home clean and every corner of it well lighted and dry can be helpful to repel the mosquitoes away. If your home enjoys sun light during the day, make sure that the sunlight gets into the rooms properly, which can reduce the dampness naturally.
Ensure all the water depositories are clean and covered
This is an important step that can do a lot in preventing the breeding of mosquitoes in your home. The places where stagnant water in homes is most common include the back of the fridge, the plant pots in the balcony, toilets and bathing rooms. Make sure that if you are storing water for some reason, it is well covered and changed regularly.
Keep some mosquito repellent plants in the rooms
Some herbs have natural mosquito repelling abilities and keeping these plants in your home can be highly helpful to repel mosquitoes and to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites. Herbs like citronella and garlic are ideal to be grown in small pots and keeping them at the corner of the rooms can effectively control the abundance of mosquitoes in your home.
Protect yourself from mosquito bites
There is a lot that you can do to ensure that mosquitoes are not able to bite you and these measures are really simple to take. All you need is to be a bit more careful and follow the suggestions mentioned below,
Wear loose and covered clothes
Wearing clothes that are loose and covermaximum parts of your body can be one of the most effective ways to ensure the best physical protection from mosquito bites. So opt for, full sleeve shirts and tops as well as long trousers that has a loose fit on your body, particularly when you are noticing a high rise in mosquito population or more mosquito borne diseases in your locality. Also do not forget to wear proper, feet covering shoes when you are going out to ensure complete protection from mosquito bites.
Use a mosquito repellent lavishly on your body
Mosquito repellants can be effective to ensure that mosquitoes stay away from you. Opt for a good quality herbal mosquito repellent composition and make sure to apply it after every 2-3 hours. The effectiveness of these repellants usually reduces with time and hence re-application at regular intervals is necessary to ensure maximum protection.
Use mosquito net
A mosquito net can give you high protection from mosquito bites. So, use it every time you are going to sleep or take a nap. Also make sure that while you are sleeping, any parts of your body do not come in direct touch with the mosquito net giving the mosquitoes a chance to bite you. Using mosquito net is a safe and easy way to protect yourself from mosquito bites.
Use Air conditioners with insect repelling abilities
This is one of the most effective ways to prevent mosquito bites in office and other working places. There are air conditioners from more or less every brand that comes with insect repellent properties. Using these ACs in your home or workplace can give you relief from mosquitoes. However, as it might not be possible to have the effect of the AC in every room, make sure to follow the above suggestions as well.
Avoid going out during evenings
The evening is one of the peak hours for mosquitoes and going out to the garden or neighborhood during this time will surely make you more susceptible to mosquito bites. So, unless it is important, avoid going out to the garden and other mosquito prone areas right before and after the sun light goes off.
Avoid getting very hot
Studies have proved that mosquitoes are more attracted to warm bodies, so ensuring that you are not feeling very hot can be one way to protect yourself from mosquitoes. Wearing light colored clothes made of summer friendly fabric can be a good way to ensure that you are not feeling very hot. Taking a short bath at frequent intervals can also be helpful to keep your body temperature down.
Natural homemade mosquito repellants
Using homemade mosquito repellants on your body as well as spraying it in your home can be highly helpful to prevent mosquito bites. These repellants will also save you from any risk of side effects that might be caused by the chemical based mosquito repellents. According to a recent review that was published in the International Journal of Pharmaceutical, Chemical and Biological Sciences, some natural ingredients that can be effective as mosquito repellants include,
The essential oil extracted from the herb catnip can be highly effective for repelling mosquitoes. Catnip essential oil mixed with other oils can be sprayed in your home and surroundings to ward off mosquitoes.
Garlic is another very effective natural mosquito repellant that can give you maximum protection from mosquito bites. Keeping garlic plants in your home is the best way to get the mosquito repelling action of garlic without being worried about the pungent smell.
Neem oil is highly effective when used as a natural mosquito repellant. It also works as a great anti-septic and can be ideal even for sensitive skin. Neem oil is best used on the skin as a mosquito repellent when added with coconut oil. You can also use the concentrated neem oil in your home where water is stored.
It is said that lavender oil can be effective in keeping the mosquitoes away. Rubbing it on your body mixed with any other oil or using the essential oil on the pulse points can be effective to repel the mosquitoes.
Citronella is another essential oil that can be great as a mosquito repellant. You can use it mixed with any other oil to get the mosquito repelling action.
Preparing mosquito repellents at home
A homemade mosquito repellant can be most effective to give you maximum protection from mosquitoes. Here are some easy recipes for making these repellents at home,
Essential oil with vegetable oil and aloe vera
This is one of the easiest recipes to prepare a mosquito repellant at home that will actually work. Mix 20-22 drops of citronella, lavender or catnip essential oil with 2 tablespoons of coconut or olive oil. Now add 1 tablespoon Aloe Vera gel to this mixture and use it as a natural mosquito repellant on your body.
Neem oil with Apple Cider Vinegar
This mosquito repellant can work ideally to keep mosquitoes away from you when used on your clothes and in your home. Mix 30 drops of neem oil with 1/4th cup of Apple Cider Vinegar and use this mixture as a mosquito repellant spray but do not use it directly on your skin as the ACV has acidic properties which might harm the skin when used in undiluted form.