Warmer weather brings out the insects, and no one enjoys the stings and bites from these critters, so here are a few natural remedies and recipes for mosquitoes, biting flies, gnats/no-see-ums, and ant bites, as well as a great natural insect repellent recipe.
There are too many dangerous chemicals included in most of the over-the-counter repellents and remedies for insect bites, and since more and more people are choosing natural-sourced ingredients, I’ve put together the best recipes and remedies in one place so you won’t have to look any further than here.
Get specific medical information about the active ingredients in repellents and other pesticides by calling the National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC) at 1-800-858-7378. NPIC operates from 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Pacific Time),9:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. (Eastern Time), 7 days a week. The NPIC Web site is: http://npic.orst.edu/ .
Insect bite relief recipe
Mosquitoes are not only dangerous, as they can carry diseases, but annoying pests as well. These creepy critters can leave red, itchy, and uncomfortable welts wherever they bite. Ant bites aren’t as common, but in Florida, those fire-ants are a pain. Also, the tiny little biters like gnats, biting flies, and no-see-ums seem to be a problem. Here’s a great natural remedy that not only helps heal the bites, but soothes and relieves the itchy feeling at the site of the bites, too.
Use equal parts Lavender and Tea Tree essential oils mixed into equal parts Aloe Vera gel and vodka or rubbing alcohol mixture at a ratio of 10:1 (essential oils to aloe/vodka or rubbing alcohol mixture). That means, if you use 10 drops of essential oils, you would use 100 drops of the aloe/vodka mixture. I like to make a large batch and divide the mixture into separate spray bottles for convenience. For example, one for the car, one near the back door, and one in the medicine cabinet. This can also be used in a roll-on bottle (I found some here at amazon).
Natural insect repellent recipe
10 drops Catnip essential oil (Nepeta cataria)
10 drops Citronella essential oil
5 drops each of:
Basil essential oil
Cedarwood essential oil
Geranium essential oil
Lavender essential oil
Lemongrass essential oil
Lemon Eucalyptus essential oil
Thyme (white thyme) essential oil
Tea Tree essential oil
Pennyroyal essential oil
Mix essential oils in a a 3.4 oz. (100ml) spray bottle and add one ounce of neem oil. You can also use castor oil, but neem oil works better for most. Mix well, then fill bottle with vodka or rubbing alcohol. Shake well before each use.
Please be aware that small children, pregnant women, and the elderly require heavier dilutions of essential oils for safety reasons. It is suggested to use half the amount an adult would use.
Here are more suggestions of essential oils for repelling creepy crawly critters:
Tansy essential oil is good for repelling ants. Basil, Tansy, Bay Leaf, and Clove are great for repelling flies. To repel black flies use Lavender, Lemon Eucalyptus, Eucalyptus, Pennyroyal, Cedarwood, Melissa (lemon balm), and Peppermint. The best essential oil used to repell ticks is Rose Geranium. Use Pennyroyal essential oil, Orange essential oil, and Fennel essential oil for repelling fleas.
Resources & More Reading;
NPIC Web site is: http://npic.orst.edu/ .
Empty roll-on bottles at Amazon
Mountain Rose Herbs is a great place for essential oils and carriers .