But this time of year signifies another annual event: mosquito season. And in Texas we should be clamoring to find the best natural mosquito repellent. Those little blood-thirsty buggers are irritating enough, but in our state we have to be aware of the quickly-spreading Zika virus. Zika has been gaining ground throughout the all the southern states, carried by two mosquito species known as Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. Although chemicals like DEET have proven to be effective in clearing the disease-carrying insects, DEET has also been linked to memory loss, headaches, fatigue, muscle and joint pain, and is especially harmful to children.1
This summer keep yourself and your family protected from the potentially severe effects of Zika and toxic traditional mosquito prevention through natural means. We’ll show you six inexpensive and natural ways to prevent mosquito bites in this brief guide:
Burn Bright – A highly effective form of mosquito control, citronella essential oil candles are easy to install or make (if you’re feeling crafty) and release an aroma that offends mosquitoes. Place a few candles in tiki torches around your patio or pool to create a mosquito barrier that also offers some ambience.
Switch on the Fans – Did you know a mosquito can’t fly into a breeze stronger than one mile per hour? Take advantage of this and aim a box fan right at your lower extremities to keep the vampires away. Pointing it any higher only keeps them off your face and will drive them onto your feet.
Change Your Workout – Everyone creates CO2 when they breathe or eat, but you emit higher levels of CO2 when you work out, due to increased cellular respiration. Mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide and are more likely to attack you during your cooldown phase. Experts recommend you take your cooldown inside to minimize bites.2
Natural Repellents – The best natural mosquito repellent options are picaridin at 15 to 20 percent (made from pepper plants) and oil of ecualptypus at 30 to 40 percent concentration. A good picaridin product is Natrapel and a recommended oil of eucalyptus brand is Repel Lemon Eucalyptus. Drops of lavender rubbed into the skin are also effective.
Food and Flowers – If you’re big on barbequing during the summer and enjoy raising a garden, channel these hobbies for enhanced mosquito control. You can throw rosemary on grill while preparing your cuisine for mosquito-free dining, while adding savory taste to your meal. Plant feverfew, citronella, catnip, and lavender in your flower beds to aid in mosquito prevention.
Eliminate Standing Water – Standing water is a standing invitation for hordes of mosquitos. Cut down on the stagnant water areas in your yard to minimize mosquito egg-laying opportunities. Dump out bird baths, puddles, and pet water bowls, and make sure your gutters are draining well. Cover your pool when it’s not in use.
Eliminating mosquitoes is never a guarantee, but you can apply our tips for natural ways to prevent mosquito bites and associated virus attacks. For more ideas about summer patio accessories to help with mosquito prevention, browse our catalog or contact us today with production questions.
1”13 Natural Ways to Keep Mosquitoes Away.” www.naturallivingideas.com. N.p., 17 July 2013. Web. 04 July 217. http://www.naturallivingideas.com/13-natural-ways-to-keep-mosquitoes-away/.
2Rockwood, Kate. “Attack of the Blood-Suckers.” Health July/August 2016: 144-146. Print.