Nothing inspires a cleaning frenzy quite like an indoor insect sighting. When the hot days of summer begin, the creepy-crawlies tend to seek shelter in our temperature-controlled and well decorated-homes. And, as much as we’ve missed entertaining, these “guests” are most unwelcome.
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Even the tiniest pests can cause huge household disturbances, but before you call your realtor or torch the bathroom, take note of the many natural ways to get those bugs back outside.
- As a preventative measure, continue to work on eliminating clutter and everyday home messes. Insects are attracted to food sources (hello, crumbs under the high chair); they also like dark, cool places. Remove these temptations by vacuuming, sweeping, and dusting often.
- Clean up the critters with a white vinegar and water solution. It’ll kill the bugs on the spot, and also work to repel the others. Consider using the solution on countertops and floor corners to discourage movement.
- Ants can only march one by one if there’s a competent leader. They rely on scent to follow the trail. Dish soap destroys the pheromone and upsets the creepy parade. Apply some soapy water under doorframes that lead to outside.
- Peppermint is a natural repellent for many insects. Dilute 10 drops of essential oil with two cups of water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution around windows, doorframes, and baseboards. *It’s important to note that peppermint can be extremely toxic for pets, especially cats. So, skip this one if you’re a fur parent.*
- Ants have a sweet tooth and are naturally innately deterred with sour and bitter smells. Use a bit of lemon juice at entry points, or mix with water and use it as a cleaning agent in these areas. Similarly, black or cayenne pepper will also have the same effect.
- If you happen to notice anthills in the outdoor areas around your house, consider treating them with boiling water. Pouring the water into the anthills will kill most of the colony (if repeated as needed).
Having indoor insects is often inevitable, so don’t let it bug you! Use these natural methods to keep them from invading your space.