17 Hacks To Get Rid Of Bugs For Those With Entomophobia

17 Hacks To Get Rid Of Bugs For Those With Entomophobia

When I was a child, I had a really bad case of entomophobia (or “bug phobia,” if you will). I couldn’t even play outside like the other kids because I’d freak out if I was even in the same vicinity as those creepy crawlies.

As I grew older, though, I realized I couldn’t avoid them forever, so I learned anything and everything I could about repelling bugs. If your entomophobia is as bad as mine used to be (and still is!), I recommend these tips and tricks to get rid of bugs.

how to get rid of bugs


    Vampires aren’t the only ones afraid of garlic. You can create a spray recipe out of this ever-reliable kitchen ingredient. If you have this, plus mineral oil, water and pure soap flakes, you can create a pest repellent from scratch.


    Yes, onions are good for something other than making you cry. Slice these up, place them in a bowl of water and watch the bugs head for the hills (or, rather, away from your home).


    Hot Pepper

    Mix three tablespoons of any hot pepper — cayenne, jalapeno, what-have-you — with a gallon of water. Let it simmer for 15 minutes, and leave it for 24 hours for the mixture to come together. Then, add a few drops of biodegradable dish soap, and you’re ready to go.

    Diatomaceous Earth

    Diatomaceous Earth, or DE, is probably one of the safest and most effective bug killers. When in contact with a bug, it literally gets under a bug’s skin and drains them of moisture until the bug dies of dehydration. Although it doesn’t harm humans or wildlife, it’s a good idea to wear a mask when spraying this mineral in bug-infested areas.


    Bugs may love to attack plants, but that doesn’t mean plants haven’t learned to fight back. If you plant lavender, marigold, rosemary and others with scents that repel mosquitoes in your garden, you can say goodbye to expensive, artificial ways to get rid of your pesky, bloodsucking friends.

    Cedar Chips

    Cedar is especially effective against moths. Put these in your closet or anywhere else moths like to visit. Next thing you know, your favorite sweaters will be safe from harm once again.


    If you’re a bit queasy about the other options, this may be worth a try. Put 10 drops of peppermint essential oil into a four-ounce glass bottle, shake and spray. Peppermint oil gets rid of a variety of bugs from spiders to cockroaches. Mice also hate the smell of peppermint!


    how to get rid of ants


      Ants are a bugger but there are natural remedies to repel them. Sprinkle ground cinnamon along the areas that you often find ants. If you find ground cinnamon a bit too messy, try using cinnamon essential oil. Add 5-10 drops in your glass spray bottle with water, shake and spray in areas you often see ant collecting.


      Yes, you read that right! These round, tangy slices of fruit can keep the ants away from your kitchen counter. Just leave those slices lying wherever ants hang out, and that’s it.

      Citrus Peels 

      Don’t want to waste those leftover orange peels? Rub them on areas where spiders lurk. Not only will your arachnophobia be kept in check, but your house will also smell great!

      Lemon Eucalyptus Oil

      If you’re looking for an alternative to DEET to protect yourself from mosquitoes or ticks, try using lemon eucalyptus oil. Put a few drops of this essential oil in your glass spray bottle, shake and spray before going outside.


      how to get rid of stink bugs

        For Stink Bugs

        Take a plastic Pepsi bottle, preferably the one with straight sides. Using the label as a guide, cut out the top of the bottle and set it aside. Put a silver LED light inside the bottom half of the bottle. Then, seal it with the top facing downwards, secure it in place with masking tape on four sides, and cover the bottom with dark electrical tape. You can get more info on how and why it works through this YouTube video.

        For Mosquitoes

        The trap is basically the same as that for stink bugs, only instead of LED light, you’ll use an anti-mosquito mixture instead. To make that, mix together sugar and hot water, then add yeast. Stir until the mixture is frothy, and pour it into the bottle along with one cup of water. Wrap it loosely with plastic, and store it in a place where the yeast can safely ferment for a week. Afterwards, hang it where mosquitoes congregate.

        For Wasps

        Again, the basic trap is the same as that for stink bugs and mosquitoes — except for what’s inside. Before you seal the trap with the funnel (i.e. the top part of the bottle upside down), pour cooking oil along the sides. Then, pour in any sweet liquid inside the trap, and hang it out near the wasps’ lair.


        how to kill cockroaches

          For Cockroaches

          Find a large, empty jar. Line the inside edge of the opening with Vaseline. Put your bait inside the jar (e.g. peanut butter) and watch the little buggers’ futile efforts to escape. Who’s laughing in the face of evolution now?

          Rinse, Repeat and Revise

          Even if the traps seem to work now, be sure to observe them until you see no more signs of infestation. Otherwise, your six- or eight-legged friends will either develop a resistance to them, or even “learn” to avoid them altogether.

          Keep It Natural

          If you notice, most of the bug repellents on this list come from Mother Nature. Artificial repellents can be just as effective, but they’re potentially toxic to the environment, so it’s recommended to use all-natural ingredients as much as possible.

          Take Preventative Measures

          As Benjamin Franklin once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Check your house regularly for possible places where bugs thrive, and clean/seal them off. Know why you had the infestation in the first place, and take steps to prevent it from happening again.

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          Science Says Silence Is Much More Important To Our Brains Than We Think

          Science Says Silence Is Much More Important To Our Brains Than We Think

          In 2011, the Finnish Tourist Board ran a campaign that used silence as a marketing ‘product’. They sought to entice people to visit Finland and experience the beauty of this silent land. They released a series of photographs of single figures in the nature and used the slogan “Silence, Please”. A tag line was added by Simon Anholt, an international country branding consultant, “No talking, but action.”

          Eva Kiviranta the manager of the social media for said: “We decided, instead of saying that it’s really empty and really quiet and nobody is talking about anything here, let’s embrace it and make it a good thing”.

          Finland may be on to something very big. You could be seeing the very beginnings of using silence as a selling point as silence may be becoming more and more attractive. As the world around becomes increasingly loud and cluttered you may find yourself seeking out the reprieve that silent places and silence have to offer. This may be a wise move as studies are showing that silence is much more important to your brains than you might think.

          Regenerated brain cells may be just a matter of silence.


             A 2013 study on mice published in the journal Brain, Structure and Function used differed types of noise and silence and monitored the effect the sound and silence had on the brains of the mice.[1] The silence was intended to be the control in the study but what they found was surprising. The scientists discovered that when the mice were exposed to two hours of silence per day they developed new cells in the hippocampus. The hippocampus is a region of the brain associated with memory, emotion and learning.


            The growth of new cells in the brain does not necessarily translate to tangible health benefits. However, in this instance, researcher Imke Kirste says that the cells appeared to become functioning neurons.

            “We saw that silence is really helping the new generated cells to differentiate into neurons, and integrate into the system.”

            In this sense silence can quite literally grow your brain.

            The brain is actively internalizing and evaluating information during silence


              A 2001 study defined a “default mode” of brain function that showed that even when the brain was “resting” it was perpetually active internalizing and evaluating information.


              Follow-up research found that the default mode is also used during the process of self-reflection. In 2013, in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, Joseph Moran et al. wrote, the brain’s default mode network “is observed most closely during the psychological task of reflecting on one’s personalities and characteristics (self-reflection), rather than during self-recognition, thinking of the self-concept, or thinking about self-esteem, for example.

              “When the brain rests it is able to integrate internal and external information into “a conscious workspace,” said Moran and colleagues.

              When you are not distracted by noise or goal-orientated tasks, there appears to be a quiet time that allows your conscious workspace to process things. During these periods of silence, your brain has the freedom it needs to discover its place in your internal and external world.

              The default mode helps you think about profound things in an imaginative way.

              As Herman Melville once wrote,[2]


              “All profound things and emotions of things are preceded and attended by silence.”

              Silence relieves stress and tension.


                It has been found that noise can have a pronounced physical effect on our brains resulting in elevated levels of stress hormones. The sound waves reach the brain as electrical signals via the ear. The body reacts to these signals even if it is sleeping. It is thought that the amygdalae (located in the temporal lobes of the brain) which is associated with memory formation and emotion is activated and this causes a release of stress hormones. If you live in a consistently noisy environment that you are likely to experience chronically elevated levels of stress hormones.

                A study that was published in 2002 in Psychological Science (Vol. 13, No. 9) examined the effects that the relocation of Munich’s airport had on children’s health and cognition. Gary W. Evans, a professor of human ecology at Cornell University notes that children who are exposed to noise develop a stress response that causes them to ignore the noise. What is of interest is that these children not only ignored harmful stimuli they also ignored stimuli that they should be paying attention to such as speech. 

                “This study is among the strongest, probably the most definitive proof that noise – even at levels that do not produce any hearing damage – causes stress and is harmful to humans,” Evans says.[3]

                Silence seems to have the opposite effect of the brain to noise. While noise may cause stress and tension silence releases tension in the brain and body. A study published in the journal Heart discovered that two minutes of silence can prove to be even more relaxing than listening to “relaxing” music. They based these findings of changes they noticed in blood pressure and blood circulation in the brain.[4]

                Silence replenishes our cognitive resources.


                  The effect that noise pollution can have on cognitive task performance has been extensively studied. It has been found that noise harms task performance at work and school. It can also be the cause of decreased motivation and an increase in error making.  The cognitive functions most strongly affected by noise are reading attention, memory and problem solving.

                  Studies have also concluded that children exposed to households or classrooms near airplane flight paths, railways or highways have lower reading scores and are slower in their development of cognitive and language skills.

                  But it is not all bad news. It is possible for the brain to restore its finite cognitive resources. According to the attention restoration theory when you are in an environment with lower levels of sensory input the brain can ‘recover’ some of its cognitive abilities. In silence the brain is able to let down its sensory guard and restore some of what has been ‘lost’ through excess noise.[5]



                  Traveling to Finland may just well be on your list of things to do. There you may find the silence you need to help your brain. Or, if Finland is a bit out of reach for now, you could simply take a quiet walk in a peaceful place in your neighborhood. This might prove to do you and your brain a world of good.

                  Featured photo credit: Angelina Litvin via


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