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Mosquitoes are the bane of people’s summertime all over the world. They’re the one thing some people hate about summer! They buzz around, biting us and causing everyone to itch on an otherwise perfect day. Also, they are capable of bringing all sorts of diseases. It begs the question, how do we get rid of these pesky creatures? More importantly, how do we get rid of them without destroying the earth?
While many people turn to chemical mosquito repellents to keep these pests at bay, there are natural remedies that can work just as well and are better for us and the environment. Communities from around the world have used natural remedies for centuries to repel mosquitoes. Here are some of the most effective and humane methods from different cultures.
1. Smoke and fire
Around the world, different communities have been using smoke and fire as effective deterrents against mosquitoes. Smoke from a fire or burning certain herbs and woods like citronella can help in repelling mosquitoes that get closer. The Masai community in Kenya, for example, uses smoky fires made from cow dung to keep mosquitoes at bay. So, time to break out the vegan marshmallows and get a fire going!
2. Crushed lemongrass
In Southeast Asian countries such as Indonesia and Cambodia, people use crushed lemongrass leaves as a natural mosquito repellent. The oil in lemongrass is believed to repel mosquitoes with its strong smell. It is this oil that is found in citronella candles.
3. Cow dung and ashes
In rural communities in India, cow dung and ashes are mixed and burned in a bowl or clay pot to create smoke that repels mosquitoes. The burning smell helps to keep the mosquitoes away. This non-chemical alternative to traditional bug repellent has been proven to be nearly as effective!
4. Castor oil
In Jamaica, people use castor oil to repel mosquitoes. In addition to repelling mosquitos, castor oil is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties that can the healing of bug bites.
In Thailand and Sri Lanka, people use basil to repel mosquitoes. Basil contains essential oils that have mosquito-repelling properties. The oils affect the insects’ sensors, making it so they have to fly away to recover.
In the United States and other Western countries, people use cedarwood as a natural mosquito repellent. According to some people, cedarwood contains natural oils that repel mosquitoes. Unfortunately, recent studies have come out saying that it is not quite as effective as users may think. But, if it were up to popular opinion many swear by it!
7. Eucalyptus leaves
In Morocco, people use mint as a natural mosquito repellent. Mint contains essential oils that have mosquito-repelling properties. The stronger the smell, the fewer bugs you will see.
9. Citrus fruits
In Brazil, people use citrus fruits like oranges and limes to repel mosquitoes. The smell of citrus fruits keeps mosquitos at bay.
In France and other parts of Europe, people use lavender to repel mosquitoes. Lavender contains essential oils that keep the bugs away and it is often used in essential oil blends for mosquito repellent. It contains a compound known as linalool — which smells great to humans but terrible to mosquitos.
11. Neem oil
In India and other parts of South Asia, people use neem oil to repel mosquitoes. Neem contains a compound called azadirachtin, which is a natural insecticide that repels mosquitoes. According to studies, it is one of the most effective natural insecticides!
In Mexico and other Latin American countries, people plant marigold flowers around their homes to repel mosquitoes. Marigolds contain a compound called pyrethrum, which is a natural insecticide. Plus, they look beautiful!
In the United States and other Western countries, people use catnip as a natural mosquito repellent. Catnip contains a compound called nepetalactone, which is believed to repel mosquitoes and other insects. Some say that it is even as effective as DEET.
15. Tea tree oil
In Australia and other parts of Oceania, people use tea tree oil as a natural mosquito repellent. Tea tree oil contains terpenes, which have mosquito-repelling properties. Field testing shows that repellents containing tea tree oil are very effective against mosquitos.
Different communities from around the world use natural remedies to repel mosquitoes effectively. These are only some of the natural remedies that are used to keep pesky mosquitos at bay. While you may not be able to use all of them, like cow dung, there are many accessible remedies here that could be effective in humanely repelling mosquitoes without harming them or using harsh chemicals that can harm the environment. In addition to being environmentally friendly, natural remedies help communities avoid the adverse health effects associated with using chemical repellents. Overall, a natural alternative can prove better for you, your family, and the world.
Sign this petition to stop the spray of a harmful bug repellent in Florida!
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