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Natural Tick Repellent Recipes & Tick Bite Prevention Tips

ticks Tick before eating and after eating.

Before we discuss natural tick repellent recipes and tick bite prevention, let’s take a moment to learn a little more about ticks and their dangers.

Ticks. They’re rightly considered to be one of the most unpleasant pests of the insect world. However for those who love nature, or those who are even outside for any longer than a little while, the likelihood of getting a tick bite can be pretty high. Also, whilst the internet is full of blogs, guides and articles, it seems that many seem to conflict with one another as to how to avoid tick bites.

So let’s take a look everything you need to know about ticks, from the symptoms of a tick bite, right through to the natural tick repellents that actually work, and along the way, we’ll try to debunk the most common tick myths and misunderstandings.

Ticks – A little about our not-so-friendly critters

As far as insects go, it’s safe to say that ticks are very unpleasant. They’re ugly, difficult to spot, painful and their feeding habits are pretty disgusting.

What’s more, as they latch on and don’t let go until they’re filled with blood, you can be stuck with a tick for anything from a matter of days through to a number of weeks. And once full, they can reach the size of a marble, turning a green blue colour, before falling off.

Oh, and did we mention that when they fall off after they’ve been a right pain, they quite simply roll over and die. Pretty pointless, right?

And what happens if you do pull them off?

Well, without wanting to put anyone off their dinner, if you pull off a tick that is in full latch mode, you’ll likely end up with just the body, with the head remaining firmly underneath your skin. This can then lead to both a painful and potentially dangerous abscess that has the potential to turn skeptic.

The serious side of tick bites

Whilst we can laugh at the irony of the fate of the tick after they’ve had their meal from us, the serious side to tick bites is not quite as funny. Particularly as these little fellas can be responsible for spreading:

  • Lyme disease
  • Ehrlichiosis
  • Anaplasmosi
  • Tularemia
  • Babesiosis

Symptoms of a tick bite

Not sure whether you’ve been bitten by a tick? Well the following symptoms can all appear within a matter of the minutes after the bite.

  • A red, inflamed sport or a circular rash around the bite, that’s also know as the ‘halo’
  • Stiff neck and shoulders
  • Headaches, nausea or a ‘foggy’ head
  • Sudden weakness
  • Aching muscles, joint pain and overall wellness
  • Fever, a fluctuating temperature or chills
  • Swollen, painful lymph nodes

The truth behind the blood type myth

There’s been many a myth circulated in the past concerning whether ticks are attracted, or repelled, by certain blood types. But we can clear this up once and for all by assuring you that it is absolute nonsense. Ticks are creatures of opportunity and, if they see a nice bit of flesh that’s within reaching distance, they’ll latch on. It’s as simple as that.

So what about the unlucky ones who seem to get bitten ALL of the time?

Well it would seem that this is simply down to bad luck (as well as perhaps a poor choice of clothing and repellent). However, with all of the helpful tips and tricks that are stored within this blog article for you, your luck, when it comes to ticks, is about to get whole lot better.

Homemade Natural Tick Repellent Recipes

ticks1 Neem leaves have great natural tick repellent properties

Recipe One: Natural Tick Repellent For your clothes

Ingredients that you’ll need

  • 5 Cloves of Garlic (around one bulb)
  • 2 Tablespoons of crushed Neem Leaves
  • 1 and half Lemons (skin and all)
  • 2 Cups of Water

Equipment that you’ll need

  • Stove
  • Sauce Pan
  • Strainer
  • Funnel
  • Spray Bottle
  • Measuring Cup
  • Measuring Spoons
  • Knife
  • Cutting Board

Natural tick repellent, a case note: The garlic ingredient in this recipe is an important element to add and has notably been found to reduce the chances of being bitten by a tick by as much as 21%. This may go some way to explaining why some of us are luckier than others, as for those with a high garlic content diet, the residual garlic within our sweat may serve as a natural repellent.

Natural tick repellent for your clothes: Step by Step

Step One – Heat up your water.

Step Two – Whilst the water is heating up dice up your lemon and garlic.

You needn’t be too careful with getting your chopping precise, or too finely cut, just cut them roughly.

Step Three – Measure out two tablespoons of dried neem leaves.

Step Four – Once your water is boiling you can add in your ingredients.

Step Five – Cover you sauce pan over and leave it to simmer on a low heat for between fifteen to twenty minutes.

Step Six – Remove the mixture and set aside, leaving it to cool down.

Step Seven – Place your funnel into the spray bottle that you have a carefully positioned over the top. You should then take care to slowly pour through your mixture through the strainer. The strainer will then catch all of the solids, with the liquid filling up the spray bottle below.

Step Eight – Screw the spray bottle top back on and that’s it… you’re all done and ready to go.

Step Nine – If you do end up with any leftover repellent then it can be stored; to keep it at its most effective however, you’ll need to get it refrigerated.

Tips for applying the natural tick repellent

Perhaps the most efficient way to use any repellent is to apply it to your skin, however given the garlic ingredient within this recipe it may be wise to avoid this if you don’t want to repel humans as well as ticks! Beyond misting your skin directly you can also use this mist to apply to clothes (just do so at a reasonable distance); it’s also suitable for pets too.

Recipe Two: Natural Tick Repellent For Your skin

ticks2 ACV has natural tick repellent properties

If you want to go all out and mix up some natural tick repellent for your skin as well as your clothes then the following recipe is perfect.

Ingredients that you’ll need

  • 2 oz of apple cider vinegar, witch hazel or vodka (each is relatively as effective as the next, so feel free to choose freely between these)
  • 2 oz Water
  • 20-40 Drops of geranium bourbon oil

One squirt of Castile soap to help distribute the oil better (this works out to be around a quarter of a tea spoon, however this is also an optional ingredient)

Equipment that you’ll need

  • A glass or PET plastic spray bottle
  • A sauce pan

Natural tick repellent for your skin: Step by step

Step One – Add your geranium oil to the apple cider vinegar, witch hazel or vodka.

Step Two – Mix the castile soap into the mixture if you’ve chosen to include castile soap.

Step Three – Wait for the mixture to sit for a few minutes, before you go on to mix further.

Step Four – Add in the water to the mixture

Step Five – Your mixture is now all done, so fill up your spray bottle.

Ideally your spray bottle should be made from either glass or a PET plastic, as oils can otherwise leach the chemicals from certain plastics, which essentially contaminates the repellent.

Tips for applying this tick repellent

This simple recipe is easy to use, and all you need to remember is to shake the mixture well before each use. Simply spray it on exposed skin. This repellent is also suitable for your clothes.

Recipe Three: A Homemade Tick Repellent Lotion For Your Skin

As another form of the recipe above you can choose to make this natural repellent in lotion form. This arguably may be a more effective natural tick repellent as the lotion will be naturally absorbed into the skin.

Ingredients that you’ll need

  • 2 oz of your choice of natural lotion (you can either make your own, or use any shop brought lotion)
  • Between 20 and 40 drops of geranium bourbon essential oil

Equipment that you’ll need

  • A glass or PET plastic spray bottle
  • A container in which to mix your ingredients

Homemade tick repellent for your skin (lotion): Step by step

Step One – Mix your oil and essentials oils into a container

Step Two – Add the mixture to your spray bottle

Tips for storing your repellent

This lotion based tick repellent should be stored in a cool, dark place. If stored as such this is a repellent that should easily last for between two to three months.

Tick Bite Prevention Tips And Advice

So you are now armed with some natural tick repellent sprays and lotions, let’s natural tick repelling education with a few well-placed tips.

  1. Wear clothes that are light in color

This will give you a much better chance of spotting a tick before it has time to sink its teeth into your skin.

  1. Wear long pants along with protective footwear such as solid sneakers or hiking boots.

You can also increase your protection by tucking your shirt or top into your pants and, in particularly tick abundant areas, by wrapping some duct tape around your ankles and over your socks. This may give you a rather odd style, but it’ll certain ensure that you avoid being bitten!

  1. Remain on well-trodden trails

If possible, you should try to stay on well-trodden tracks where over hanging vegetation and planting is minimized. Overgrown meadows are also to be avoided if at all possible, and what’s more, this tip not only helps you avoid ticks, but additionally allows you to leave a lesser impact upon the outdoor spaces that you love.

  1. Remember to do a daily tick check

This tip is particularly important if you’re staying out for a number of days where the chances of a tick reaching you or your clothing is heighten. You should also get a friend to help you out and check the places where you can’t, such as your back.

  1. Once you’re home remember to check the kids and the pets

Before you set even so much as one foot over your threshold, you should check over your children and pets, and if just two or three make it in you could find yourself with a fresh littler of ticks to contend with!

  1. When coming home after a trip to potentially tick infested zones, you should bathe or shower as soon as is possible

Ideally this should be within two hours, as ticks can tend to hide away from even the most extensive of overall body checks.

  1. Be sure to examine not only each other and your clothes

But also your equipment, including coats, tents and day packs.

  1. Always tumble dry your clothes that has gone on the trip with you.

If ticks have happened to latch on or hide away within these then they will be killed off when the dryer is set to a high heat setting (it’s worth noting that more recent research seems to suggest that even shorter drying times may be effective, particularly when the clothing inside isn’t wet to begin with).

  1. If you choose to use shop brought, chemically based repellents then you should opt for those that continue between 20% and 30% DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluidine), as this is most effective.

Bare in mind however that when choosing such repellents it’s particularly important that you avoid the hands, eyes and mouths (especially when applying to a child’s skin).

  1. Always be prepared for being bitten, including within your packing finely pointed tweezers and bite lotion.
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Living Outdoors Can and Will Hurt You.

Following some simple rules can save your life.

In an emergency survival situation the very first priority is clean drinking water. One can impractically, but survive for weeks without food, but 3 days in a warm climate is just about the human body’s limit without water. When collecting water in your environment always assume the water is NOT drinkable until either, boiled, filtered, or chemically treated. Here’s a small list of just some of the water borne diseases and pathogens you can contract by drinking untreated water. The best course of action is to always choose caution and avoiding health concerns. Avoid contracting the disease in the first place.

Water Borne Diseases

water

Adenovirus Infection (Adenoviridae virus)

  • Vary depending on which part of the body is infected
  • Drinking contaminated water
  • Incubation 5-8 days

water-2

Amebiasis (Entamoeba histolytica parasite)

  • Diarrhea, stomach pain, and stomach cramping
  • Fecal matter of an infected person (usually ingested from a pool or an infected water supply)
  • Incubation 2 to 4 weeks

water3

Campylobacteriosis (Campylobacter jejuni bacteria)

  • Diarrhea, stomach pain, and stomach cramping
  • Chicken, unpasteurized milk, water
  • Incubation 2 to 10 days

Cryptosporidiosis (Cryptosporidiumparasite)

  • Stomach cramps, dehydration, nausea, vomiting, fever, weight loss
  • Fecal matter of an infected person (can survive for days in chlorinated pools)
  • Incubation 2 to 10 days

Cholera (Vibrio choleraebacteria)

  • Watery diarrhea, vomiting, and leg cramps
  • Contaminated drinking water, rivers and coastal waters
  • Incubation 2 hours to 5 days

E. Coli 0157:H7 (Escherichia colibacteria)

  • Diarrhea (may be bloody), abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, HUS
  • Undercooked ground beef, imported cheeses, unpasteurized milk or juice, cider, alfalfa sprouts
  • Incubation 1 to 8 days

Giardiasis (Giardia lambliaparasite)

  • Diarrhea, excess gas, stomach or abdominal cramps, and upset stomach or nausea
  • Swallowing recreational water contaminated with Giardia
  • Incubation 1 to 2 weeks

Hepatitis A (Hepatitis A virus)

  • Fever, fatigue, stomach pain, nausea, dark urine, jaundice
  • Ready-to-eat foods, fruit and juice, milk products, shellfish, salads, vegetables, sandwiches, water
  • Incubation 28 days

Legionellosis (Legionella pneumophilabacteria)

  • Fever, chills, pneumonia, anorexia, muscle aches, diarrhea and vomiting
  • Contaminated water
  • Incubation 2-10 days

Salmonellosis (Salmonellabacteria)

  • Abdominal pain, headache, fever, nausea, diarrhea, chills, cramps
  • Poultry, eggs, meat, meat products, milk, smoked fish, protein foods, juice
  • Incubation 1-3 days

Vibrio Infection (Vibrio parahaemolyticus,Vibrio vulnificusbacteria)

  • Nausea, vomiting, headache (a quarter of patients experience dysentery-like symptoms)
  • Raw shellfish, oysters
  • Incubation 1 to 7+ days

Viral Gastroenteritis (Calicivirus virus)

  • Diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, cramps, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, slight fever
  • Water, ready-to-eat foods (salad, sandwiches, bread) shellfish
  • Incubation 24 to 48 hours

If you don’t want any of these diseases it’s best that you plan for emergencies by having a way to either sterilized or filter your water sources. Boiling water, using a filtering system that removes particles down to .5 microns, or chemically treating water with 3-4 drops of bleach per gallon of water will provide protection. Obviously none of these processes will allow you to drink salt water. The only way to process and sterilize salt water is to distill it. This process through boiling and condensing will both kill any pathogens and remove minerals.

Ok we’ve got water now.

What else can make you sick? Well the answer is more annoying and dangerous than any lion, tiger, or bear. They outnumber us billions to one and they are relentless….Insects

From the annoying buzzing of mosquitoes to the sting of the creepy scorpion. Through out history, insects have been responsible for the collapse of entire societies.

Protections from insects can include a number of solutions.

  • Long sleeve clothing
  • Long pants
  • Hats and Head Nets
  • Netting covering opening in shelters
  • Chemical Sprays (Deet, Paricardin, Eucalyptus, Gamma CyhalothrinSprays)
  • Fire

If you are bitten or stung by any insect. To reduce the possibility of allergic reaction one should either take an antihistamine such as Benadryl or some other brand. If you know you have a severe reaction to stings such as bees or wasps an epipen is definitely something you’re going to want to pack in you bug out.

Fleas

Yersinia pestis:plague

Lice

Lice Infestation

Mosquitos

  • Arboviral Encephalitides
  • Mosquito-transmitted viral diseases causing brain inflammation/encephalitis
  • Eastern equine encephalitis
  • Japanese encephalitis
  • La Crosse encephalitis
  • St. Louis encephalitis
  • West Nile virus
  • Western equine encephalitis
  • dengue fever
  • malaria
  • Rift Valley fever
  • West Nile encephalitis (West Nile virus infection)
  • yellow fever

Ticks

  • babesiosis
  • Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever
  • ehrlichiosis
  • Lyme disease
  • Rocky Mountain spotted fever
  • Southern tick-associated rash illness
  • tick-borne relapsing fever
  • tularemia

Scorpion

Stings result in numbness or tingling, blurry vision and twitching muscles. For children, hyperactivity and erratic eye movement can manifest.

Spider Bites

Mild stinging, followed by local redness and severe pain that usually develops within eight hours. Necrosis of tissue is common among some species and poisonous spiders. Some spiders such as the Brown Recluse and Black Widow are poisonous and can result in severe illness and/or death. Anti-Venom treatments in some cases may be the only way to survive.

Bee and Wasp Stings

Sharp pain or burning at the sting site. Redness, minor swelling, and itching. Those with severe allergic reactions need medical attention immediately or self-administered epipen treatment (strong antihistamine)

Ants

Sharp pain or burning at the sting site. Redness, minor swelling, and itching. Those with severe allergic reactions need medical attention immediately or strong antihistamine treatments.

Wild Animals, especially the Human kind can harm you and your family

It’s an unfortunate reality that in emergency and survival situations we are sometimes forcibly placed in predicaments that we would have never imagined. Animals have innate instinct to survive by hunting for food. If you are prepared for an emergency and have food, animals will try to take it from you.

Bears

  • They will eat your unprotected food.
  • Do not climb a tree to get away, they are excellent climbers.
  • Pepper Spray or Firearm can/will deter them.
  • Be loud.
  • Do not run away. They will consider you prey.
  • Bears are good to eat.

Mountain Lion

  • They will lay in wait for hours.
  • Make a lot of noise.
  • Firearm can/will deter them.
  • Do not run away. They will consider you prey.
  • Can be eaten for emergency food

Racoons

  • They will steal your food
  • Can’t harm you.
  • Lock down or hang food stores
  • Be loud
  • Can be eaten

Alligators

  • Do not camp right on water sources they frequent
  • Be aware of surrounding
  • If chased, run at 45 degree angle from them.
  • Excellent food source.

Poisonous Snakes

  • Wear long pants and boots if you walking through tall grass.
  • Be aware of your surroundings
  • Crawling around larger rocks and or logs may upset snakes
  • If bitten:
  • Stay calm. Apply a compression wrap to area.
  • Do not try to suck out venom. This does absolutely nothing. You may end up causing more necrosis of the tissue and at best you’ll remove 1/1000th of the venom injected.
  • Receiving professional medical attention and the proper anti-venom is the best option.
  • If no medical support is available, there really isn’t anything to do but wait. Healthy and strong individuals have a much better chance of survival.
  • Can be eaten

Humans

  • The most dangerous of all animals
  • They will eat your food
  • They will steal everything valuable
  • They will hunt you
  • They will kill you and your family (or worse)
  • In Survival situation trust no one other than family and people you know well.
  • Protect yourself with firearms, pepper spray, knives.
  • Be prepared to pack up and run. (avoidance is the safest option)

When SHTF be Prepared to GO

Be Prepared, Plan for Emergencies, Protect your Loved Ones.

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