8 Simple Ways To Keep Ticks Away During The Summer
With many pesticides being banned and widespread climate change (bringing generally warmer winters), tick populations are increasing each year. Ticks carry a number of diseases, the most harmful being lyme disease. Thankfully, there are many simple ways to protect you and your loved ones from these nasty critters this summer.
1. Maintain Your Yard
Ticks thrive in shady, slightly damp conditions and long grass. A simple thing you can do to keep tick populations down is to ensure your lawn is mowed regularly and that there are no piles of sticks or debris lying around.
2. Check Your Pets
Ticks are just as attracted to your pets as they are to you. If you suspect you may have ticks hanging around, make sure you check your pets for ticks each and every day. This is especially important for long-haired dogs and cats, as ticks will hide on their bodies more easily.
3. Wash Your Clothes On The Hottest Cycle
If you suspect your clothing or bedding has come into contact with ticks, make sure you put them directly into the washing machine. Wash them on the hottest cycle your washing machine has and do the same when it comes to the dryer. This will kill any lingering ticks.
4. Keep Your Home Clean And Organized
If ticks make it inside your home, they will find a dark place to hide. Ensure you keep your home free of clutter and give everything a thorough clean at least once a week. Piles of clothing strewn around your bedroom are the perfect hiding spots for ticks, so toss those clothes straight into the hamper!
5. Scatter Cedar Mulch Or Gravel
Ticks hate any materials that are rough or scratchy on their legs. Consider scattering some cedar mulch or gravel around your property and yard to deter ticks from setting up shop there.
6. DIY Tick-Repellant
Although pesticides generally do the trick, they’re quite harsh and can be harmful to your pets and children. Mix together one cup of water, two cups of white vinegar, and a couple teaspoons of vegetable oil. Transfer the solution to a spray bottle and spray on clothing, your skin, or your pets before spending time outdoors.
7. Check Yourself Regularly
When ticks latch on, they often go undetected. After spending time outdoors, be sure to check all areas of your skin for ticks. This specifically pertains to ankles and feet, as they’re the easiest body parts for ticks to climb on to.
8. Plant Tick-Repellant Flowers
There are multiple types of plants you can grow in your garden that naturally repel ticks. These include lavender, garlic, sage, lemongrass, and rosemary. In addition to repelling ticks, they’ll also look wonderful, smell great, and you can use some of them in the kitchen!