The Breakfast Starch That Will Make Silverfish A Thing Of The Past

Silverfish aren't the worst pests to find in your house, but you certainly want to avoid having them take up residence in your home when possible. Finding these pests in your space can be startling because it's not uncommon to move an object and find one slinking around. Yet you can repel bugs naturally by trapping them with breakfast oats and then getting rid of them quite easily.

While silverfish don't bite, they can leave behind excrement that can contaminate your food and surfaces (via Web MD). In the kitchen, they will often lurk under sinks, on shelves in the pantry, and behind baseboards. They can also hide out in bathrooms and bathtubs as well as basements, since they often seek dark and moisture.

More than giving you a scare, they can ruin your possessions. Silverfish eat away at books, papers, glue, and cardboard. Yet they also will eat your food — such as dried meat, veggies, and cereals — and that is how your food can become contaminated. 

How to trap silverfish using powdered oatmeal

You can capitalize on their attraction to food and use it to your advantage to get silverfish out of your house. All you need to do is pour some powdered oatmeal into a jar and place a piece of tape vertically down the side of the jar to give them an easy path to walk up and into the jar. This will help trap them.

Silverfish will gravitate toward the jar or container and happily slink their way into the pile of oats to chomp away. However, once they climb in, the powder from the oats will prevent them from being able to climb out. You can close the jars and release them outside.

If you don't know where the silverfish are gathering, look carefully at floors and cupboards. You may notice excrement; their droppings look like tiny peppercorns. Another sign is yellow stains that are left behind from their bodies on surfaces and floors, as well as on paper and furnishings.

Keep silverfish from getting in your home again

Once you have removed silverfish from your home and do not see them lurking about anymore, it's time to prevent them from getting back in. Do a full audit of your space, and in particular, the areas that have been infested. Scour your home for places that are moist and damp.

One way to ward off silverfish from reappearing is to clean up clutter. This is especially true when it comes to stacks of paper like magazines, books, and newspapers. Vacuum regularly to remove dust and debris. In the kitchen, place all starchy foods like rice, pasta, and oats in airtight containers.

Finally, check all plumbing for leaks. Even tiny drips under the sink or behind a wall can result in water buildup and add moisture to the air. In places that are already dark and dank, check humidity levels. Basements and attics are notorious for being humid, especially in hot weather. Part of this is because you don't always use those rooms regularly, so getting fresh air into those spaces is often a problem. Place fans in enclosed and warm areas, and consider getting a dehumidifier to remove humidity from the air.