Silverfish are those squirmy, fast moving bugs that you have probably found hanging around your shower or in an old book. There's good reason why silverfish choose these places: They love the starch found in the binding of books (they also like the paper) and enjoy damp, dark places like a shower as well as the cellulose ingredients found in many shampoos and shave foams.
Silverfish are harmless to humans- they don't bite or carry around germs like other pests (such as roaches). The problem with silverfish is that they cause damage to fabrics, books, wallpaper and more. The other problem is that they are hard to exterminate. Even exterminators find it challenging to successfully rid a home of all silverfish. The good news is that there are steps you can take to preventing silverfish or at least to make your a home less attractive to silverfish.
Here are some of ways to prevent and help rid your home of silverfish:
1. Cloves- It has worked for some but not for others. It's a inexpensive and pleasant option so it's worth a try to see if it will work for you. Simply spread whole cloves around in places where you have seen silverfish. If you are trying to prevent silverfish, then place cloves behind books in bookshelves, under sinks and in the corner of your shower. Whole cloves can be found in the spice section at your local grocery store.
2. Check for Plumbing Problems- Silverfish like dark and damp areas. If you have a plumbing problem, such as leaky pipes, it will create an open invitation for silverfish. If you have a serious silverfish problem then you should really get your pipes checked by a plumber.
3. Stable Humidity Levels- Keeping your house at proper humidity levels will also keep silverfish out. If your house is too humid (and too hot), then silverfish will want in as they love humid and damp places. Consider purchasing a dehumidifier for your basement to help decrease humidity.
4. Keep Clean- It's hard to keep a perfectly clean house. But taking the extra time each day to sweep will not only help prevent silverfish but also help to prevent many other pests such as ants and roaches. Since silverfish like sugar and starch, they will likely want to come into a home with crumbs. In fact, silverfish can go without eating for a year, so they will happily wait around in your home until they get some crumbs.
5. Keep Food in Containers If you live in areas which are more prone to silverfish, south as many of the Southern states then you should consider keeping your rice, beans, flour, sugar, etc, in air tight containers to prevent silverfish from getting in.
If you have a rare infestation of silverfish then it may be a good idea to get an exterminator to come out and get rid of as many as possible to get the situation under control.
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