1. Health & Lifestyle

Make your own Herbal Mosquito Repellant

Dr. Sangeeta Soi
Dr. Sangeeta Soi

Herbal products like Cintronella oil, clove and eucalyptus oil etc have natural mosquito repellant properties. According to the past researches, the essential oils of the leaves of Cymbopogon nardus (Citronella),Cymbopogon citratus (Lemongrass), Cymbopogon winterianus (Citronella), Ocimum basilicum (Sweet Basil), Ocimum sanctum (Tulsi), Ocimum americanum (Hairy Basil), Eucalyptus citriodora (Eucalyptus), Eucalyptus globulus (Eucalyptus),Rosmarinus officinalis,  Melissa officinalis,  Curcuma longa (Turmeric) rhizomes, Citrus sinensis (Sweet Orange) peels,Citrus hystrix (Kaffir Lime) peels, Citrus limonum (Lemon) peels, Syzygium aromaticum (Clove) buds and Pinus roxburghii resins have shown very high mosquito repellent activity. Moreover, the extracts of Azadirachta indica (Neem) seeds, leaves of Alpinia galangal (Greater Galangale), Vitex negundo (S. Nika) and Tribulus terrestris (S. Gokatu) also have been studied as possible mosquito repellents. The selection of these plants was based on their availability as raw materials, scientific evidence and folkloric use as mosquito repellents. 

Mosquitoes are among the most disturbing blood sucking insects afflicting human beings. Several mosquito species belonging to genera Anopheles, Culex and Aedes are vectors for the pathogens of various diseases like Dengue fever, Malaria, Yellow fever, Japanese Encephalitis and several other infections. Mosquitoes alone transmit diseases to more than 700 million people and over one million deaths are reported annually across the globe. 

As most of the mosquito repellant available in market are toxic and put adverse effects on body when inhaled. The need to develop mosquito repellant which is natural and with no side effect is the need of hour. 

Many researchers have shown that plant essential oils have better repellent efficacy rather than plant extracts. However, all the essential oils are highly volatile and this contributes to their poor longevity as mosquito repellents. Therefore, many essential oils are not suitable to be used as sole mosquito repellents. This problem is addressed in the current study by preparing two herbal mosquito repellent formulations using highly volatile essential oils together with herbal extracts. 

Preparation of stock solution:

Ethanol solution containing 10% extract or essential oil were prepared using each plant extract and essential oil 0.3 ml of each plant extract or essential oil was mixed with 3 drops of Tween 80. Then ethanol was added until the volume was 3 ml. 20% extract or essential oil containing ethanol solutions were separately prepared using Neem extract, Nika extract and Turmeric essential oil. 0.6 ml of each plant extract or essential oil was mixed with 3 drops of Tween 80. Then ethanol was added until the volume was 3ml. 

The gel as well as spray can be prepared from the above formulations. In order to prepare the gel. The total active ingredient in the gel was 16%. Distilled water was added to the mixture until the final volume was 400.00 ml and all the constituents were mixed using the mechanical stirrer for one hour. Finally, the mixture was poured into plastic containers and the gel was allowed to set. The total active ingredient in the spray was 16%. Distilled water was added to the mixture until the final volume was 400.00 ml. 

The formulation above can be used in home as repellant to fight against mosquitoes. 

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