There are sprays for your yard, as well as products you can spray directly on yourself when it comes to keeping these nasty bugs away from you. With mosquito-borne viruses such as the West- Nile virus on the rise, preventing mosquito bites is an important part of summer safety. One such method for repelling mosquitoes is tea tree oil, but does tea tree oil repel mosquitoes?
With family barbecues, trips to the beach or lake, and other such outings, mosquitoes will likely be a factor. The old familiar sound of mosquitoes buzzing past your ear on their way to bite you is one of the hallmarks of summer. One we could all do without. There are a lot of products on the market to take care of mosquitoes that may be hanging around your yard, first let’s take a look at tea tree oil.
Does Tea Tree Oil Repel Mosquitoes?
Tea tree oil has a number of uses. It’s a useful antiseptic and can take the sting out of insect bites. In addition to treating the itch, tea tree oil is proving to be useful as a mosquito repellent. There haven’t been many studies done into the use of tea tree oil as a mosquito repellent, but the early studies have shown promise. Anecdotally many people seem to have found great success using tea tree oil as a repellent, especially when combined with other oils that are known to repel mosquitoes.
If you want to see if tea tree oil works for you, you can purchase this therapeutic-grade oil on Amazon.
Pros Of Using Tea Tree Oil To Repel Mosquitoes
- It can also be used to treat the itch from existing bites
- It doesn’t have a negative environmental impact
- It makes a handy addition to a first aid kit when camping
Cons Of Using Tea Tree Oil To Repel Mosquitoes
- There are only limited studies done on its effectiveness
- It can be harmful if ingested, so must be kept away from children
- Essential oils vary in quality so you need to use caution in selecting them
7 other ways to repel mosquitoes
There are a number of other mosquito repellents on the market if you find that tea tree oil is not right for you.
Citronella is the standby for outdoor insect repelling, and for good reason. Well formulated citronella products have been proven to be as effective as DEET at repelling mosquitoes and preventing bites. Citronella is available in sprays and as candles. You can keep your next cook-out mosquito-free with these candles from Amazon.
2. Greek Catnip Oil
Catnip isn’t just good for making your cat act silly. Studies have shown that catnip oil is even more effective than DEET at repelling mosquitoes. It needs to be applied more frequently than DEET based repellents to remain effective, and it is toxic if ingested. Despite these drawbacks, catnip is an excellent choice for naturally repelling mosquitoes. Catnip oil is easy to find online like this one from Amazon. You can also distill your own catnip oil if you happen to grow your own catnip plants.
3. Thermacell Mosquito Repellent
Mosquito repelling isn’t just topical oils and sprays. There is some great new technology out there to help keep these blood-suckers away. Thermacell repellents work by heating a mat that is saturated in allethrin and creating a “zone of protection”. Allethrin is a synthetic version of the oil found in chrysanthemums. These units are small, portable, and battery-powered. If you want to check out this technology for yourself check out this popular portable mosquito repeller available on Amazon.
4. Mosquito Dunks
The best way to keep mosquitoes away is to prevent them. Mosquito dunks are designed to kill the larvae in still water. These are very effective if you have a bird-bath or rain barrel. Mosquito dunks contain bacteria that are deadly to mosquito larvae. These are non-toxic to fish, birds, humans, and other animals. You can purchase Mosquito Dunks on Amazon.
5. Mosquito Nets
If you’re going camping, enjoying dinner in your backyard, relaxing in a hammock, or just like to sleep with the windows open, a mosquito net may be just what you need. Mosquito nets are inexpensive, come in a variety of sizes, and provide a protective barrier.
Many nets available on the market are treated with insecticides, making them even more effective. Especially in areas where diseases like Zika are widespread, a topical repellent along with a treated mosquito net is the best combination in combatting mosquitoes. Here’s a nice extra large mosquito net on Amazon.
There is no denying that DEET is one of the most effective weapons in our anti-mosquito arsenal. If you are going into an area that has confirmed Zika or West-Nile Virus cases, your best option is to use a mosquito repellent that contains DEET. Natural alternatives are great but need to be applied more frequently, and may vary in potency. With a DEET containing product, you are guaranteed several hours of protection, and even the hardiest mosquitoes will stay away.
7. Yard Sprays
If you can’t walk into your yard without mosquitoes swarming your ankles, it may be time to treat your lawn. There are a number of sprays available. Some contain synthetic chemicals and others contain botanical products like lemon eucalyptus oil to both kill mosquitoes and keep others from congregating in your yard.
There are many options available for repelling mosquitoes, from natural oils to physical barriers. What you choose to use depends on how much of a nuisance mosquitoes are in your region, or the area you may be traveling to. Remember, the best defense against mosquitoes is to keep them from occurring in the first place.
If you have any standing water on your property, such as birdbaths or ponds, be sure to treat them. Empty out any empty buckets or flower pots that may be filling with rainwater. The mosquito lifecycle starts in standing water and the more sources of stagnant water you have on your property the worse your mosquito problem will be. Preventative maintenance will go a long way in helping ensure you have a happy, mosquito-free summer.