If you think that salt is used only to season food, think again. There are literally hundreds of ways that salt can be used as a natural cleaning aid, kitchen helper, stain remover, and even for medical purposes!

Here are 10 ways to use salt in your household.

1. Sprinkle salt on shelves as a repellent to keep ants away (safer than many bug killers!)

2. Use salt to clean discolored coffee pots

3. Problem with pancakes, waffles or flapjacks sticking? Rub a little on the griddle and they come out beautifully

4. Create a paste that consists of salt, vinegar and flour, and you have the perfect cleaner for brass, copper and pewter

5. A mixture of salt and lemon juice cleans the keys of your piano

6. Fill in nail holes or other imperfections in the wall with a stiff paste made of equal parts salt, starch and enough water to moisten

7. On freezing days, you can still dry clothes outdoors. Just soak the clothes line in salt water to prevent clothes from freezing to the line

8. Salt water can also be used to prevent wicker furniture from turning yellow

9. Oven cleaning can be made much easier if you sprinkle salt in the oven before you start

10. Discolored or foggy glass can often be cleaned with a mixture of salt and vinegar

Here are 5 more ways to use salt outside your home.

1. Spread salt between bricks and blocks on your patio, sprinkle water,and you have created your very own weed killer

2. Salt mixed with soapy water is perfect for killing poison ivy

3. Salt placed inside of a cloth that has been moistened keeps snow and ice from sticking to your windshield

4. Rock salt sprinkled on sidewalks and driveways keeps snow from sticking to the pavement and allow it to be removed easily

5. Salt can be used for cleaning oil spills in the garage. Simply sprinkle salt on the spill and wait 15 minutes.It makes cleaning much easier You can use salt for medicinal purposes, as well.

1. Gargling salt mixed with warm water can be a sore throat reliever

2. Salt mixed with baking soda whitens teeth, removes plaque, and promotes healthy gums

3. Breath can be freshened by mixing equal parts of salt and baking soda and used as a mouth wash

4. Aching feet can be relieved by soaking feet in warm salt water

5. Mosquito and chigger bites can be treated by soaking the affected area in saltwater and applying a mixture of lard or shortening and salt

6. If you are feeling fatigued, relax in a tub of water containing several handfuls of salt for at least ten minutes

7. Salt is good for exfoliation. After a bath or shower, massage dry salt over wet skin. The salt aids circulation and removes dead skin cells, promoting new growth

Salt has been used since ancient times to help preserve foods. Here are four updated tips for using salt in the kitchen.

1. Fruits and vegetables such as apples, pears and potatoes will retain their color by being dropped in cold, lightly salted water as they are peeled

2. Salads remain crisp if they are salted before being served

3. Wrap cheese in a cloth dampened with salted water before refrigerating to prevent mold

4. Add a pinch of salt to milk to keep it fresh longer Salt has always been considered a vital household ingredient. Besides flavoring foods, you can use it to clean, repel bugs, kill weeds, and keep food fresh.

Jo Ann LeQuang is a professional writer specializing in medical topics and a Christ-follower who blogs at AWretchLike.Me.

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