Getting rid of bugs like cockroaches can be a real pain, especially if you’re the type that doesn’t want anything to do with dangerous chemicals and toxins. A couple of the most recommended ways to naturally get rid of roaches are to use borax or boric acid. Technically, yes, they can be considered natural. But they still pose plenty of risk, mostly to babies, young children and pets. So what else is there? What would you say to the fact there’s something even better… something that is natural and safe. So safe in fact, that you can ingest it or use it for healthier, more beautiful skin and nails? Well there is. It’s called Diatomaceous Earth.
Diatomaceous Earth is sometimes referred to as simply “DE”. This powdery substance similar in texture to talc is formed from the fossilized remains left behind by marine phytoplankton. There a bunch of ways you can use it. One of the primary ways people use it is to get rid of insects and bugs, whether that’s in the house or in the garden. Especially roaches.
Getting Rid of Roaches
According to Pest Killed, it works in two ways to rid your home of cockroaches. When they’re exposed to it, this substance will basically dissolve their exoskeleton outer wax-like layer. Secondly, the naturally strong and sharp debris from the powder will lacerate the bug, which leads to dehydration and eventually death. And even better? Other roaches around will eat the dead roach, ingesting the sharp particles that will in turn kill them too from the inside out. And the cycle continues.
Getting Rid of Fleas
DE can also help get fleas under control. Similar to how it kills roaches, the little bitty silicon gradules found in diatomaceous earth grind down in through the small holes found in flea joints and their respiratory system. With each breath and with every move the flea makes, it grinds away at the exoskeleton. It eventually leads to dehydration and death. Simply apply it to a pet’s fur and to any carpet that may have fleas embedded in it. See Care 2 for instructions on how to apply it.
Natural Head Lice Treatment
With school pretty much back in full swing all across the country, there’s one thing every parent dreads… a child being sent home by the school nurse due to head lice. Traditionally, it’s always been treated with very harsh chemicals (ouch!) or old wives tales that may or may not work (mayonaise anyone?). But this is yet another reason to keep some diatomaceous earth around. You can massage it into the the hair, let it sit overnight and wash it out the next day for a safer, more natural way to get rid of lice. Though DE is generally recognized as safe, Wellness Mama warns not to let the child breath in too much of the dust to be on the safe side. See their instructions here.
But Wait… Beautiful Skin, Heart Health and More?
Food grade diatomaceous earth is considered safe for human consumption. Note, we aren’t talking about the big bags of the industrial stuff, but food grade. Some experts believe, and research shows, that DE may even be used to lower cholesterol and improve heart health. It’s also used in many skin care products and some people use it to make their own toothpaste because its a naturally strong abrasive. You can use any of your favorite DIY toothpaste recipes, replacing baking soda with DE. More information and recipe can be found here.