Cockroaches have always been the bane of urban dwellers worldwide. They feed on anything, breed fast and are virtually indestructible. They have been around since the time of the dinosaurs and have evolved very little. People have tried ways and means of killing them - simple deprivation does not kill them, as they are quite resilient. This also goes to the many pesticides they have been exposed to.
- Figure them out. One cockroach found in your house would mean that there are hundreds more lurking in the cracks of your walls. However, since they are mostly nocturnal, try to determine where they hang out and start from there. Nooks and crannies are a good place to start by sealing off places where they might enter. However, they might come through drains, so you can't seal them all up. Try using a mix of 1 part borax with 1 part bleach on drains to prevent further entrance.
- Clean up. Keep the kitchen clean. Moist, food laden areas are where your roach might like to live. Seal food in containers, and do not leave dirty dishes overnight. Empty your trash regularly and remove debris. Put naphthalene balls in corners, as roaches hate their smell. Roaches are attracted to water, so fix dripping faucets or leaks.
- Live traps. Traps are created using any of the following ingredients, but one idea is to create a container and put a paper ramp so that the insect can get to coffee grounds (which they love!), but they cannot escape because the petroleum jelly lining the container walls are slippery. The insect gel that surrounds the coffee grounds makes sure that they are trapped there for good. Using petroleum jelly as a barrier, you will need coffee grounds as bait and insect gels as traps.
- Boric acid. Borax powder, when mixed with flour or sugar and water, is also effective in controlling the roach populace. However, this is useful only in less humid environments, because the borax works by abrading their shell. Once the shell is abraded, the insect dries out and dies. Take note that this is a toxic substance, so keep pets and children away.
- Sprays. Sprays come in liquid and powder forms. Powders cover bigger areas, are permanent in effect, and more toxic, thus capable of controlling infestations. They usually contain active ingredients like permethrin, imiprothrin, and cypermethrin. Do not use with baits simultaneously. Use only after the bait has significantly reduced their numbers.
- Insect growth regulators. IGRs work by sterilizing immature roaches so that they will not develop into viable adults. Incorporating these chemicals into your insect control plan will pay off in the long run.
Though it is best to contact a professional to eliminate these troublesome unwanted inhabitants, there are less toxic options, especially when the infested home has young children or pets. The list provided includes less toxic, do-it-yourself options, until a professional needs to come into the picture.