Summer is fast approaching bringing sunshine, warmth, and unwanted guests to our backyard, mosquitoes! Every year they come in droves and every year we try combating them, but never seem to win. We researched the top ways to get rid of mosquitoes so you can enjoy your summer nights.
5 tips to get rid of mosquitoes
In an article, 11 Ways to Prevent Mosquito Bites That Actually Work, According to Entomologists, Entomologist Jonathan Day PhD. recommends these tips for repelling mosquitoes;
Fan/wind - Mosquitoes have a hard time flying in any wind or breeze that is stronger than 1 mph. If it’s a breezy night you will notice far less mosquitoes. A plug in fan will do the trick as well, however keep in mind that mosquitoes tend to stick low to the ground for less wind resistance so make sure you point the fan at the lower part of your body.
Mosquito repellents - DEET repellent, when used as directed, is extremely effective as it blocks the mosquitoes CO2 receptors. When applying, spray on your hands and rub into your ankles, wrist, elbow, forehead and other areas where your skin is thinner. This is where mosquitoes tend to attack as it is easier to feed. Lotion and cream with DEET in it are also just as effective and will limit the risk of inhalation. Also keep in mind the concentration of DEET references, how long it will last and not its effectiveness.
Standing water - Mosquitoes can lay eggs in any stagnant water. This includes puddles, ponds, rainwater collection, gutters, and even swimming pool covers that collect water. To ensure this does not happen, make sure to clear any stagnant water in your yard. Clean bird baths out daily and give them fresh water. Get a small fountain for your pond to keep the water moving instead of stagnant water.
Plants that repel mosquitoes - Certain plants are unpleasant to mosquitoes and add another layer in your yard to repel mosquitoes. These include, but are not limited to; citronella, lavender, marigold, lemongrass and basil. Keep in mind that these only keep the mosquitoes away from those plants, so unless the plant is directly next to you or at your feet, they will not combat mosquito bites.
Cover up - Wear tight and light colored clothing. Covering up as much skin as you can with a tightly woven fabric will also help keep you from getting bit this summer. Mosquitos cannot bite through tight fabrics such as polyester or synthetic blends. Make sure you wear long sleeves and long pants at dusk and into the evening. Mosquitoes also use vision to search for food, at dusk they notice dark colors stand out, lighter colors are harder to see and therefore will not attract them as much.
Best way to heal mosquito bites
Even with the best laid intentions and following all of Jonathan Day’s advice, we can still get a few bites. Anyone that has ever been bit by a mosquito knows the red, itchy annoyance. To help with the swelling and itch we consulted the CDC recommendation for treating a mosquito bite;
Wash the area with soap and water as soon as you realize you have been bitten
Apply ice for 10 minutes, then again as needed to help with swelling
Use an over the counter anti itch cream such as Cortizone, Calamine or Benadryl.
Apply a mixture of baking soda and water as a paste to the area to help stop the itch.
Two other natural items that may help with inflammation and itch are; Honey and witch hazel.
Hire a handyman for your next outdoor project
Once you have a mosquito free backyard you will be ready to tackle all your outdoor projects, let us help! Have you wanted to illuminate your backyard with new lighting or build a new deck? We can help shed some light on your next outdoor project. You can count on Multi Lakes Handyman Services to get the job done right, give us a call.