What are the Different Types of Insect Control?

Ken Black
Ken Black
Termites might not be affected by standard pest control.
Termites might not be affected by standard pest control.

When it comes to insect control, there are two main strategies that are often employed. One calls for the extermination of bugs, usually through the use of chemical pesticides, poison or traps. The other calls for repelling the insects through other forms, such as creating electrical fields they do not like or other chemicals displeasing to their senses.

Among the types of insect control that kills the bugs, it is important to find a spray or fumigation technique that works for the particular situation. While most will kill nearly all bugs, some will last longer. Others will be more effective against certain types of bugs.

Those who opt for sprays may want to have it done by a professional agency which focuses its efforts on insect control. These companies often will help you determine what types of sprays will be most effective, focus on problem areas and prescribe a schedule of treatment. In addition to the type of insect problem a home or building may have, other things also factor into the spray type, such as if the home has children or pets.

Fumigation is also a possibility. This uses a gas to infiltrate certain portions of the home and kill any bugs that it comes into contact with. It may also have residual properties that will keep killing for weeks or months into the future. One offshoot of fumigation is tent fumigation. Tenting the house allows the smoke to more fully penetrate the home and is especially helpful when treating for wood-eating insects, such as termites, which may not respond well to other types of insect control techniques.

Poison is another option for insect control. It involves baiting areas with items that the bugs will ingest, but will ultimately be harmful to them. Poison is often a type of insect control done with ant problems, which tend to eat a variety of substances and die very easily. Also, because ants carry food back to the colony, it ends up killing the ants that cannot be seen, as well as those that can.

Those who decide to take up spraying or fumigating themselves should be careful to avoid any dangerous situations. While the kitchen is usually a very attractive area for bugs, employing some pest control methods around the kitchen could be risky. A homeowner needs to make sure the pesticides and other chemicals do not come into contact with any food or food surfaces. All food surfaces should be thoroughly washed after spraying in the kitchen, whether or not they were sprayed directly.

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Discussion Comments


@KoiwiGal - Fleas are really tough to get rid of too, particularly if they get into a place where there aren't any pets. I know that sounds counter intuitive, but it's actually pretty easy to get rid of them if you've got pets.

Just get one of those medications that gets daubed on the cat or dog and makes it so that any fleas that bite them become infertile.

If you keep the cat or dog inoculated like that it won't be long before all the fleas in the house are gone, because they'd much rather bite the pets than you.


@bythewell - We use one of those automatic insect control sprays that squirts a little bit into the air every few minutes and that seems to work fine. They aren't very expensive, I'd think a lot cheaper than getting the whole house sprayed, and you hardly notice them after a few days.

I also try to grow things like mint near the house, where we sit outside, as that's supposed to be a good insect repellent as well.

I remember when I was a student we had a flea outbreak in my dorm and they took forever to get insect control in to get rid of them. They wouldn't let us use sprays or anything as they thought we would set off the fire alarms (which we could be fined for).

So, one of my friends showed me how to rub mint on my feet and legs and then sleep with mint leaves and it really worked. The fleas were biting others, but they left me alone.

I have to say that even though it might be a little bit dangerous, we always get the house sprayed with insect repellent every summer. Just get a workman over to spray the whole house with that stuff that lasts for about three months.

Otherwise you have to put up with all sorts of flies and mosquitoes getting into the house. You can put up netting, but that's not foolproof and I think it's quite ugly if you have it all over the house.

And I can't stand air conditioning running all the time. It always dries out my skin and gives me nose bleeds. I would prefer to use organic insect control if I could, but I've never found one that really works. And I can't stand flies, so we go with the spray.

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    • Termites might not be affected by standard pest control.
      By: Michael Pettigrew
      Termites might not be affected by standard pest control.