Yeek! You’ve just seen something brown with wings flying across your wall.
Then that feeling of horror creeps up on you and you realize you’ve been attacked by the most terrifying thing anyone can think of.
Call them what you want. Siew Keong, Ka-Chuak, Lipas, it’s all the same.
They’re small, they’re horrifying and they need to go like right now. Many people think that you have to be dirty to have cockroaches in your home, but the truth is that they can show up in the cleanest of houses.
It’s easy to kill just one cockroach but what happens if you have a serious infestation? These are some steps you can take
1. Cut Off Their Water Supply
Just like any living being, cockroaches need water to survive. If there are many damp areas in your home, like under your sink, this will encourage them to stick around.
So fix leaking pipes, clean up leftover spills (even if it’s just water) is important.
Cockroaches can live for months without food, but they won’t last a week without water.
2. Use Roach Baits
There are several commercially made baits that are available. These can be found at your local supermarkets. Many of these baits have a chemical in them that’s poisonous and will kill any roach that has eaten it.
If you would like a more natural alternative, you can make your own cockroach bait.
To do this, you only need two ingredients, boric acid powder and icing sugar. Mix them up at a ratio of 1:1 and place them in containers where the roaches are most likely to reach and eat it. The sugar will attract these pests, while the boric acid will kill them.
3. Invest in a Mini Vacuum Cleaner
A small hand-held vacuum cleaner will help you reach small nooks and crannies and clean up small bits of food and crumbs.
It’s important not to have any bits of food hidden in your room. The areas most prone to having food crumbs are the kitchen and living room.
The living room tends to be left out as we often forget to clean up after snacking in front of the TV.
4. Cover Your Kitchen Rubbish
Okay, you don’t really need such a big bin. But really, get a rubbish bin with a cover.
Cockroaches are attracted to the smell of rotting food. They’re also attracted to fresh food, but you’ll find that they tend to like the rubbish heap more.
It also helps to clear your rubbish daily.
5. Use a Sticky Cockroach Trap
Cockroach traps that use adhesives or glue are available quite easily from your local supermarkets. These traps keep the cockroach stuck and they won’t be able to move.
Soon, they will die from lack of water.
All you have to do is be brave enough to throw a used trap out as there could be live roaches stuck in the trap.
6. Patch up Those Cracks
As a preventive measure against roaches, try and plaster all the cracks in your home where they can enter.
There are many DIY instructionals out there so you don’t have to get a handyman or contractor to do it. This step is important. Otherwise, you will have repeated infestations of them coming in from the outside.
It will also help if you can identify where they’re coming in from. If they’re using the drainpipes, you may have to put a wire mesh over your drainage holes to help prevent them from entering.
7. Use Soap and Water
Roaches are actually not hard to kill. Keep spray bottles filled with soap and water in a ratio of 1:1 soap and water. Any type of soap will do, including dish soap, liquid bath soap and the like.
The soapy water has to come in contact with the head or belly of the insect, so if you can get it at its belly, all the better. Soapy water can actually kill off cockroaches in a minute or so.
8. Keep Your Food Covered
Whether it’s raw ingredients, fresh fruits and vegetables or cooked food like your pizza, make sure you keep it under your food cover or put it in the refrigerator.
Don’t leave it on the kitchen counter or dining table as this will attract roaches. You’ll want to use fully covered containers and or the ones with nettings. The roaches can still find their way through small cracks, especially if they’re still juvenile and not fully grown.
9. Use Essential Oils to Repel Them
These essential oils don’t kill off roaches, but it does keep them away and discourage them from coming into the area.
Essential oils like Neem, Citrus Hystrix, Peppermint and Cedar. Mix two or three drops of these oils to a cup of water, load it into a spray bottle and spray areas where cockroaches are more likely to appear.
Alternatively, you can also soak cotton balls in these essential oil mixtures and leave them around the house.
10. Fight them to the last!
Getting rid of roaches requires a great measure of courage and determination. It’s going to be tough, especially if you have a huge fear of cockroaches (the flying ones are the worst).
Always see the clearing to the end and make sure you cultivate healthy habits that will help keep cockroaches away.
Remember, at the beginning of the article, I said that a clean house might still get visits by the cockroaches? It’s true, but a clean house can help reduce the chances of getting them.