When we worry about intruders getting into our homes, it tends to be the human variety that we’re focusing on. We lock doors, set alarms and join Neighborhood Watch schemes to protect what’s ours. What we often forget is the most common invader: the pest.
While there are steps we can take to limit the chances of some creepy crawlies making our home their home, we’re up against a determined foe. Some will inevitably find their way into our homes, and they can cause chaos once there.
If your home has any kind of infestation, you soon have to face reality. Mice carry diseases; rats are no better; even the common house fly can spread illness. Then there are the kinds of pests that threaten the safety of your home itself, such as destructive termites. When the reality dawns that you have a situation, you are forced to think about how to take action.
In a world where more and more people are turning from conventional medicine and looking for home remedies, the idea of poison is somehow anathema. Not to mention dangerous. If you have a household cat, and they end up catching and eating a poisoned rat, you’ll soon be one rat down – and one cat. There’s also the risk that a pest may be poisoned and then die within the walls of your home, where you can’t remove them. Before long, your pest problem becomes a “rat corpse stinking up the house” problem.
Chemical sprays and foggers are no less damaging, and come with a huge amount of upheaval for your family while undergoing the process. While it may be necessary to go to that stage and bring in the pros, there are some at-home remedies you can try first.
Mice and Rats: Peppermint Oil
It has long been suggested that rodents dislike the smell of peppermint essential oil. There’s not much evidence for this, but some people swear by it. Soak cotton wool balls in oil and leave them where you think rodents are finding their way inside.
House Flies: Lemongrass and Carnivorous Plants
Keep a few pots of lemongrass growing around your home, especially near trash bins. Flies are said to hate the stuff, and you can also use it in cooking. Furthermore, buy a couple of carnivorous plants and position them strategically. The Venus Flytrap is the most famous, and kids love watching the traps snap shut.
Termites: Dry Them Out
A major part of termite control is about reducing moisture. These little wood chewers just love damp areas, so if you have an infestation, make it permanent sunshine. UV lamps and dehumidifiers are a good option, and you can treat exposed wood to make it less tasty.
The above will only be effective on mild to moderate issues, though they may also help with prevention. At the end of the day, any severe infestation is going to require a call to the professionals. If that worries you, invest your time in some research and find a company that offer toxin-free pest control.