Getting rid of roaches naturally can be a slow process. With powerful insecticides, you’ll see results right away, but you’ll be exposing your family to toxic chemicals in the process. Getting rid of them naturally not only keeps your family from being exposed to harmful chemicals, but it can also prevent the problem from reoccurring. So how do you do it?
1. Clean, clean and clean again.
As with most household pests, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. What do I mean? You’ve got to make sure your house is spic-and-span because cockroaches are attracted to food residue, particularly grease. That means wiping down the counters each night, never leaving dirty dishes in the sink, making sure the stovetop is clean and sweeping the floors before you go to bed. This may seem like a lot to do every day, but if you start doing this stuff on a regular basis, a 15-minute cleanup should be plenty at the end of each night to eliminate most residues (unless you have a party — or kids — and then cleanup will take a little longer).
2. Seal up cracks and holes.
That means inside your pantry, between the countertop and the wall, and in the baseboards. Roaches (and other insects) can crawl through even the smallest of spaces, so it’s important to seal the entries into your home. This may take time, but in the end, it’s worth the effort, especially if you live in an apartment and have neighbors who don’t maintain the same standards of cleanliness as you do. You can use a tube of caulk and a caulking gun to do the job.
3. Fix any water leaks.
Roaches are attracted to moisture and water from leaks in pipes. That’s why you often find them scurrying under your sink. Some cockroaches can survive for months without food, but only days without water. Close off their water sources by repairing even the tiniest of leaks. Don’t let water stand in your sink and don’t overwater indoor plants.
4. Make your own, natural cockroach bait.
Mix three parts boric acid with one part powdered sugar. The sugar lures the roaches, while the boric acid kills them. Although the boric acid isn’t toxic to people or pets, it can be irritating so keep it away from counters and places where little fingers and noses can reach. Sprinkle it under and behind the refrigerator, stove, and dishwasher, under the sink, and into cracks along the edges of cabinets and pantries.
5. Kill it with kindness
If you have a cockroach in the house right now and you don’t want to spray harmful insecticides inside your home, try spraying a little solution of soap and water on it. I keep this stuff around to clean my countertops, by the way. Because of roaches, like most insects, breathe through their skin, the soap essentially suffocates them.