Are you looking for the best home remedies for ticks? Find out what you can do around the house and how Terminix can help treat and prevent a tick infestation.
Natural Remedies for Ticks
Ticks don’t typically infest the inside of homes, but if they manage to latch on to you or your pets, they can hitch a ride and hide inside. Ticks can hide just about anywhere once inside, so if you find one in your home, it’s a good time to get the vacuum out. The easiest way to get rid of individual ticks is to vacuum pet bedding, floor cracks and under furniture. Make sure to immediately dispose of the vacuum bag after cleaning.
Ticks that are found on linen, bedding or clothing can be killed in the dryer. Do not put them in the wash first, though, as wash temperatures can have varied effects. For example, researchers from several universities as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that black-legged ticks can sometimes survive being submerged in water. However, a tumble in dry heat according to the manufacturer’s instructions should dehydrate them and kill them quickly.
When all is clean and tidy, natural remedies for ticks, such as an essential oil concoction, may be able to help keep ticks away. Examples may include mixtures of lemongrass, peppermint and garlic oil. However, it should be noted that essential oils are only evaluated by the Environmental Protection Agency for their safety — not their effectiveness.
Preventing a Tick Infestation
Ticks tend to live outside where they can easily find and attach to hosts. To avoid an infestation, the CDC recommends
- Removing leaf litter.
- Clearing tall grasses and brush around your home and at the edge of the lawn.
- Placing a 3-ft wide barrier of wood chips or gravel between your lawn and wooded areas to restrict tick migration into recreational areas.
- Mowing the lawn frequently.
- Stacking wood neatly and in a dry area (to discourage rodents).
- Keeping playground equipment, decks and patios away from your yard edges and trees.
- Discouraging unwelcome animals (such as deer, raccoons and stray dogs) from entering your yard by constructing fences.
- Removing old furniture, mattresses or trash from the yard that may give ticks a place to hide.
Ticks may deliver painless bites and stay on your body for days without being detected. When they are done feeding, they can then drop off and hide inside your home. To avoid bringing a tick inside, the CDC recommends showering and inspecting yourself, your children and your pets after being outside. If you find a tick latched on, quickly remove it using a pair of pointed tweezers and drop it into a container of rubbing alcohol.