Simply put, your home is your sanctuary. After a long day of work or school, nothing beats going home and lying on your comfy sofa and watching TV, and then eventually, sleeping on your bed. There is no place in this world that can provide that type of coziness like your home.
However, there are hindrances that may interfere with your rest and relaxation. Surely, one of the most irritating is dealing with pests. PestWorld.Org notes that ants rank the first on the list of home infestations, inflicting 56 percent of American homes. What’s staggering is that ants are just one of the things you may encounter in your house. There are a variety of other pests that may infest your home, damage structures, and affect your health.
In this regard, the pest control industry has been growing rapidly alongside this budding dilemma.
Did you know that you can take some steps in order to prevent these infestations from happening? Yes, you have the power to protect your family and home from these harmful pests. Below are the three most annoying pests, their respective harmful effects, and tips on how to deal with them.
As mentioned earlier, ants are atop the list of the most destructive pest infestation. What makes it difficult to deal with them is that they include a wide variety of species. Each requires specific solutions, if you’re going to do it on your own. This is why it is important to identify first what type of ant you are dealing with and that you do not confuse them with termites, which is, in fact, another nuisance at home.
The most common types of ants that can come into your home are odorous house ants and carpenter ants.
Odorous house ants are attracted to sweets, and they are usually found where there is food. This is the reason why their main target is your kitchen. These ants leave chemical pheromone trails wherever they go. While it may be an instinct to kill them right away when they show up, doing so would not cause much change as others would soon come out, following the trail of their recently extinguished ant companions.
Your goal must be to reach their entire colony and extinguish them completely. The most known ant killer is Borax. Attract the ants by using a powdered sugar bait. You make this by mixing four parts sugar with one part of Borax. When the ants are baited, they bring the mixture back to their nest. Sooner or later, the colony is taken out.
Another type of ant are carpenter ants, which are commonly seen in houses made predominantly of wood. Unlike the odorous house ants, they don’t have the same behavior of bringing food into their nests. This is why you have to make extra detective work to find the source. These ants live in wood and make tunnels through it. One thing you should notice when you’re near the source is fine sawdust.
Diatomaceous Earth or DE is usually the solution to this type of pest. Be sure to purchase Food Grade DE, which is safe to use around kids. When you finally see where they are coming from, which is most likely in moist wood, inject the DE directly to the nest. DE is lethal to insects, so when the ants ingest it, you can finally say goodbye to those little critters.
Cockroaches are among the most common pests at home. These insects usually search for food at night, be it in your kitchen, food storage, garbage, or drains. On average, roaches can range anywhere from .5 to 3 inches long. The three most common cockroaches in the United States are the German, Oriental, and American roaches. They are flighty and odorous, which makes them an annoying pest in any place they inhabit.
This type of insect, be it the adult or baby cockroach, can cause significant health concerns. The saliva, feces, and shedding body parts of cockroaches can trigger both asthma and allergies. According to the World Health Organization, you may get allergies with frequent exposure to cockroaches. The organization added that these insects play a role as carriers of intestinal diseases, such as diarrhea, dysentery, typhoid fever, and cholera.
These allergens act like dust mites, aggravating symptoms when they are kicked up in the air. The National Pest Management Association reports that 63 percent of homes in the United States contain cockroach allergens. In urban areas, that number rises to between 78 and 98 percent of homes.
In getting rid of cockroaches, there are natural approaches you can use. Before anything else, it is important to note that a variety of roaches can be attracted to your home for different reasons. Knowing the type of roach you are dealing with can help you decide on how to get rid of them. For instance, the most common roach found indoors is the German roach. The German roach is attracted to water. Reducing access to water sources in your home can help reduce a roach infestation.
While the aforementioned is one of the better ideas to keep them away, it is also important that you try out prevention methods as well. Boric acid, a substance found in products like clothing detergent and toothpaste, can be one of the best roach killers. Mix three parts boric acid with one part powdered sugar. Sprinkle it under and behind the refrigerator, stove and dishwasher, under the sink, and into cracks along the edges of cabinets and pantries.
The sugar lures the roaches, while the boric acid kills them. Although the boric acid isn’t toxic to people or pets, it can be irritating, so it is important to keep it away from counters and places where little fingers and noses can reach.
Rats and Mice
Rats and mice are among the most irritating pests at home because of their destructive behavior on structure, furniture, wirings and food. Statistics suggest that 20% of the world’s food supply is either consumed or contaminated by rodents. On top of that, these animals cause fires because of their constant chewing of electrical wirings both at home and in commercial spaces.
You can do your pest control by sealing up holes and cracks where mice may be gaining access. This prevents them from even going in your place.
If you ever saw a mouse trap sold at stores, get one. it works. Set up that trap near places where there are marks or near food sources.
Tidying up around the home on a consistent schedule cannot be overlooked. It’s one of the best ways to keep mice away naturally. Mice are drawn towards messy, cluttered homes. Clutter offers them many places to hide and nest, while food scraps and spills make for an easy meal.
Another preventive measure you can do is to place ammonia-soaked rags or jars with mothballs around possible rat dens. The strong smell of these chemicals can drive them away and stop them from making camp at your home.
If worse comes to worst, it may be good idea to get a pet that are natural predators of mice. A cat at home can provide that natural predator-prey scene, as mice would unlikely live long within the cat’s proximity. Also, the great thing about this is that a cat’s very presence can deter any mouse infestation readily.