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Is Pest Control Safe?

Oct 18, 2019 Home and Garden

photo of a pest

The aim of a pest control treatment is to either deter or remove pests from an area. This can be done through removing whatever attracts them to that area or destroying them and their nest. Destruction of a nest or infestation is usually done through the use of chemicals. With chemicals come risks. 

photo of a healthy family

Is pest control harmful to humans?

The type of pest control used will determine its toxicity to humans. Some naturally occurring substances can be great for controlling or deterring some types of pests and have no ill effects for people. For example, lavender is said to be good for fending off mosquitos whilst peppermint is said to be good for treating ants. An added benefit to using some of these naturally occurring substances is that they will make your house smell nice as well. On the other side of this, artificial pesticides are often created using a mixture of chemicals that have proven to be effective in treating a particular type of pest and deterring them. More often than not, these are harmful to people to come into contact with.

spraying pests

Is pest control safe for pets?

As with the people safety factor, manufactured chemicals specifically for pest and insect treatment can be quite toxic to animals. This is true not only during the period of application but for well after the control chemical has been applied. This is due to the residue of the chemical remaining on the surfaces around the area such as floors, walls, fencing, and other items in the area. The good news is that it is possible to minimise this impact by being vigilant with the product or company used to control the pest issue. This is done by ensuring you choose an insecticide or pesticide with a low toxicity level, or even insignificant. If you choose to outsource this task to a professional pest controller, verify their pest control licence and ask them about the chemicals they use. 

photo of pet dog

How long do you have to stay out of your house after pest control?

The type and extent of the pest control will ultimately determine how long if at all, you need to vacate your house for. For example, using a commonly available “bug bomb” from your local supermarket advises that you will need to vacate the area for at least 3 – 5 hours. When spraying an area for mosquitos, you may not need to leave the area at all. A full fumigation treatment may mean you will need to leave the property for 24 hours. In all situations, it is best to consult the packaging on the product in use or be sure to clarify this with the pest control company being used. 

Do Some Research

All pesticides and insecticides have toxic substances that are used in their make up. When determining which one to use, it is best to do some research on the ones that have the lowest toxicity. This will ensure that you are not exposing yourself, family and pets to any unnecessary risks. This may even involve research into natural remedies such as lavender, cloves, vinegar or peppermint. 

image of lavender

The product used will ultimately determine the amount of time an area of the building will need to be vacated for. This can range from a couple of hours to days. Natural products have no need to vacate an area. In order to determine how long this will be, consult your local pest control company or follow the directions on the packaging of the pest control substance being used. In all cases, be sure to remove any residue from surfaces post-treatment.