I like to inform my readers about natural non-toxic solutions. Oftentimes, this eliminates the need for chemicals.
For instance, I’ve totally gotten rid of all chemical bug sprays. Instead, I use essential oils. Insects hate the smell of strong aromatic oils, especially peppermint.
So peppermint oil is what I use to keep ants out of my kitchen. In fact, peppermint essential oil is so noxious to pests that it can even keep rodents away.
Roaches and other nasty creatures are also put off by the smell of peppermint. This aromatic is considered one of the best for all natural pest control. Humans love the smell of peppermint. But, basically, any type of living creature you don’t want inside will be put off by peppermint.
This includes bed bugs. Unfortunately, in the United States, bed bug infestation has become an epidemic. They can invade clean homes, as well as messy ones. They aren’t dangerous. But they are a nuisance. But keep reading and I’ll tell you how to make your own essential oil bed bug spray, so you hopefully don’t have to use potentially toxic insecticides.
Essential Oils for Bed Bug Control
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I do need to let you know I haven’t deal with bed bugs personally. But I have dealt with ant infestations, using peppermint essential oil. I can’t say enough about how well it worked. We rarely have ants in our kitchen now, despite the fact we’re not fastidious about keeping crumbs off the counter.
All I do is occasionally put a few drops of peppermint essential oil on a sponge. I use this to wipe down my counters. Apparently, this tells the ants my home is now enemy territory.
There is some evidence that essential oils can be useful in combating bed bugs. One study published in the scientific journal Insects found that a ready-to-use essential oil product that contains lemongrass and cedar wood essential oils was just as effective as a chemical-based insecticide.
Commercial insecticides often contain compounds known as pyrethins or pyrethroids. These chemicals are potentially toxic and have been linked to a number of health problems, including allergic reactions. Also, these compounds have been shown to cause cancer in animals exposed to large amounts, over a period of time.
Essential Oils to Control Insects
I’ve also used peppermint oil or natural rodent control. This seemed to help a little. But we actually had mice residing in the house. So we had to use a chemical-free electronic rodent zapper to solve the problem. So peppermint essential oil played a smaller role in reducing our rodent population.
Believe it or not, we also use essential oils for natural flea control. But not peppermint essential oil. That’s because it’s too strong for dogs. Instead, we use either lemongrass essential oil and geranium essential oil.
And we put a drop on his collar, not his body. If you own a dog, I think it’s important to first discuss this idea with your vet. Never use essential oils on young puppies, pregnant females or cats.
Essential Oil Bed Bug Spray Recipe
It’s really easy to make your own essential oil bed bug spray recipe. All you need is peppermint essential oil, lemongrass essential oil, cedarwood essential oil and a glass spray bottle. It’s really important to use a glass bottle , instead of plastic. That’s because the strong aromatic oils will degrade the plastic. So, here’s a non toxic bed bug recipe.
10 drops of peppermint essential oil (It’s available here)
10 drops of lemongrass essential oil (It’s available here)
10 drops of cedarwood essential oil (It’s available here)
2 teaspoons of Epsom salt (You can get it here)
16-ounce glass spray bottle (You can find them here)
Add the above ingredients to a clean glass spray bottle. Add enough water to fill it. Store you spray in a dark place, away from heat. Spray the bedding, mattresses and other areas once a day, until you’re confident there’s not more infestation. Then, spray one a week for maintenance.
As always, use this spray a few hours before you use the bed. If you’re using it on a child’s bed, cut the recipe in half. Make sure the smell is not overpowering.
Bed Bug Repellent Spray DIY
When dealing with something as noxious as bed bugs, I think the best strategy is to attack them from all angles. There are other safe, non-toxic means of controlling these pests. If you’re fighting bed bugs, or you just want to prevent them from taking up residence, here are some other chemical-free suggestions.
- Wash your sheets and blankets in the hot cycle, and dry them on high. This should kill the eggs.
- Vacuum your mattress, headboard and the areas around your bed every day. You can put some peppermint essential on in the vacuum canister. Thoroughly clean the vacuum canister afterward, and remove the contents to the trash.
- Run your pillows and stuffed animals in a hot dryer.
- Items that can’t be put in a dryer can be sealed in a plastic bag and placed in the freezer for a couple of hours.
- Wash all of your clothing immediately upon returning home and dry them in a hot dryer.
These statements have not been approved by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use essential oils unless directed to do so by a healthcare professional.