Bed bug infestations were a common problem during WWII. When the war came to an end, many Americans believed bed bugs would no longer be a public issue. Unfortunately, this was not the case. While bed bug infestation reported diminished to only a few, a resurgence has brought them back to the United States in full-force. Immediately following WWII, “modern” insecticides became readily available to most American consumers. Even during this era, the available insecticides were effective, giving home and business owners more control than ever before. Today, the United States is reporting more bed bug infestations than ever before. It is unclear what caused bed bugs to resurrect, but experts believe Americans are more prepared than ever to take on these tiny insects.
It only makes sense to investigate the issue before attempting to treat it. A thorough in-home bed bug inspection is the solution to achieving a successful eradication. If your bed bug infestation is only minor, you may very well get by with a simple DIY treatment utilizing an all-natural repellent.
Essential Oils – All-Natural Topical Insect Repellent
Essential oils are derived from all-natural substances. It has become the new norm to utilize essential oils to treat minor illnesses, pest problems, stains, and skin allergies. All topical pest repellents must be approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) before they are available to the consumers. One particular all-natural skin repellent that does not need EPA approval is essential oils. Experts believe essential oils are effective in treating inflammation associated with bed bug bites and pest prevention. A small dab will go a long way in bed bugs at bay.
Diatomaceous Earth – Apply Directly To Hiding Places
Another all-natural pest repellent is diatomaceous earth. The only downside to diatomaceous earth as a bed bug repellent is its abrasive properties. It is not recommended to apply the substance directly to a vulnerable surface, such as a kitchen countertop. However, it can safely be applied to bed linen, upholstery, carpet, tile, and hardwood. Diatomaceous earth works by absorbing oils and fats from the exoskeleton of bed bugs.
Peppermint Oil – Powerful Scent
Peppermint oil is a great all-natural bed bug repellent. Its many natural properties make it one of the best insect repellents without harmful ingredients. Peppermint oil works as a pest repellent by emitting a strong smell. Insects are not fond of the strong peppermint scent, which is why this is a great all-natural alternative to harmful insect repellents.
Black Walnut Tea – ‘Potential’ Bed Bugs Repellent
Black walnut tea has been described as a “potential” bed bug repellent. There is no evidence to support this theory, but some experts believe it is a safer alternative to chemical-based insect repellents. Black walnut tea may eradicate bed bugs in all life stages, including eggs and adults.
Petroleum Jelly – Applying Directly Leaves A Mess
Petroleum jelly’s natural properties may keep bed bugs and other insects at bay. Applying a small dab along your headboard and bed board may very well deter bed bugs from accessing your bed. If you have a fear of bed bugs and do not favor chemical-based repellents, this may work very well for you. You can even apply petroleum jelly directly to your skin as a bed bug deterrent.
Rubbing Alcohol – A Fire Risk
Rubbing alcohol is another natural topical bed bug deterrent. Not only does the liquid have a powerful scent, but many natural properties that work great as an insect deterrent. A small dab here and there will go a long way in deterring bed bugs and other insects from getting into your personal space. However, there is a big downside to rubbing alcohol. This downside is its flammable properties.
Baby Powder – Safe Bed Bug Repellent For Young Children
When most people think of a bed bug repellent, baby powder never comes to mind. Well, you may be surprised to learn that this is one of the safest insect repellents for young children. Apply a tiny amount to your children’s bed linen and clothes to may keep bed bugs away. However, some experts believe baby powder is ineffective as an insect deterrence.
Dryer Sheets – Not As Effective As One May Like
Some people believe dryer sheets have insect repellent properties. There is no available evidence to support this theory. However, it could not hurt to give it a try since they can be added to the dryer with little to no effort.
It is never a good idea to apply dryer sheets directly to your skin because some brands may contain harsh ingredients that may cause irritation.
Laundry Soap And Hot Water
Washing and drying bed linen, attire, and other machine-washable items can help eradicate living bed bugs and other insects. To enhance the effect of your laundering effort, it is recommended to utilize a good laundry detergent. When you are not doing laundry and need a safe topical bed bug repellent, you can still take advantage of laundry detergent. Apply a small amount to the high-risk areas – bedroom, living room, and den – to keep bed bugs at bay. It is also possible to apply a small dab to your skin before going to bed at night.
Homemade insect repellents are known to be effective for the eradication of bed bug infestations. These products may help keep bed bugs at bay but will do nothing to eradicate the insects. However, some of these products may help when combined with effective bed bug treatments. Again, there is no proof to support these theories.