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7 Natural Ways to Prevent Mosquito Bites Everyday Health

7 Natural Ways to Prevent Mosquito Bites Everyday Health

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7 Natural Ways to Prevent Mosquito Bites Everyday Health

 7 Natural Ways to Prevent Mosquito Bites Everyday Health MenuNewslettersSearch Bug Bites 7 Natural Ways to Prevent Mosquito BitesWhen it comes to fending off itchy mosquito bites, synthetic repellents are not your only option

Find out what else works to ward off pesky mosquitoes

ByDeniz SahinturkMedically Reviewed by Ross Radusky, MDReviewed: November 21, 2018Medically ReviewedCitronella candles and fans are two ways to keep mosquitoes away

Getty Images; iStock (2)Warmer weather means reveling in outdoor activities like hiking, sunbathing, and barbeques

Along with these plusses comes one tiny nuisance: mosquitos

These pesky pests, which thrive in warm weather, can put a damper on anyone’s summer fun

But there are ways to deter mosquitos, so you can enjoy the sunshine

The most common method used to repel mosquitoes is DEET spray, according to a survey published in July 2018 in Peer J — The Journal of Life and Environmental Sciences

DEET spray has the longest lasting effect against mosquitos, but there have been some concerns over potential side effects of the spray, including skin irritation, redness, rash, swelling

Joseph Conlon, a retired U

Navy entomologist and technical adviser for the American Mosquito Control Association, says there is no need to worry, though

“DEET is a product registered by the EPA [Environmental protection Agency], and poses no unreasonable risk,” Conlon says

“If you use it judiciously there should be no problem — I mean, don’t drink it

”But there are other ways to thwart mosquitoes if you don’t want to use a synthetic repellent

In fact, according to the survey, 36 percent of people prefer to use natural repellents

“The results show that in the future, there won’t just be a marketplace for synthetic repellents, but for natural repellents as well,” says Immo Hansen, PhD, who worked on the survey

When using natural repellents that are applied directly to the skin, it’s important to use EPA registered ones and always check the labels, reminds Conlon

If you have sensitive skin or known skin allergies, it’s a good idea to test your skin first by applying a small drop of essential oil on the inside of your forearm

Here are 7 natural ways to prevent mosquito bites: 1 Lemon EucalyptusThe Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)has classified lemon eucalyptus, an EPA registered repellent, as an active ingredient in mosquito repellent

In a study published in June 2014 in the journal Fitoterapia, lemon eucalyptus essential oil was found to provide 100 percent protection against mosquitoes for up to 12 hours

“It is a very good repellent,” says Conlon

“Just do not use it on kids younger than three years old; it hasn’t been approved for them

”Bonus: Lemon eucalyptus also helps relieve the symptoms of the common cold, like congestion and coughing

2 Catnip OilWhat most people know about catnip is its effect on cats

But it can also be used as a culinary herb or smoked like a cigarette

And research shows that it can be used to repel mosquitos, too

Yet this does not mean that catnip oil, which is acquired from catnip by steam distillation, will make you suddenly attractive to cats, according to Stephanie Maslow-Blackman, wellness advocate and essential oils instructor

“The difference between the oil and the plant is that when you extract the oil from the plant, the oil won’t have the side effects the plant might have

For example, if you’re allergic to trees and use cedarwood oil, you won’t be experiencing an allergic reaction,” Maslow-Blackman says

So if you want to have more cat friends, you’ll have to find another way

But this oil is EPA-approved and will give you seven hours of protection from mosquitos, according to Conlon

3 Peppermint OilPeppermint oil is a natural insecticide and a mosquito repellent, according to the American College of Healthcare Sciences, based in Portland, Oregon

You can mix this oil with other scents, like lemon, and rub them onto your skin for a minty scent

But, Maslow-Blackman stresses, “Peppermint oil is a hot oil,” which means it can cause a warm sensation when applied directly to your skin and might cause a skin rash

To prevent this, she suggests diluting the peppermint oil with a carrier oil, like canola oil

4 Lemongrass OilAccording to a study published in July 2016 in the World Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, lemongrass oil is comparable to commercial mosquito repellents

According to Maslow-Blackman, combining lemongrass oil with another essential oil (like cinnamon bark oil) will make its repelling effect stronger

5 IR3535IR3535, a synthetic amino acid, is one of the most common active ingredients in insect repellents

Repellents containing IR3535 come mostly in cream form, and are available in most drugstores

The amino acid messes with the insects‘ sense of smell and is an excellent repellent, according to Conlon

“It has no toxicity and gives you eight hours of protection,” he says

6 Use a FanDavid Shetlar, an Ohio State University professor of urban landscape entomology,told Cleveland

com that mosquitos are bad fliers

So if you’re sitting outside on a summer day, bring an electric fan with you to keep the mosquitoes away

7 Eliminate Standing WaterAny pools or puddles around your home or yard can quickly become a mosquito breeding ground, according to the Mayo Clinic

Tips to keep the area around your home free from these insects include:Unclogging roof guttersEmptying any kids‘ poolsChanging the water in any bird baths weeklyMaking sure rain is not accumulating in trash can lidsStoring flower pots or any other unused containers upside downNEWSLETTERS Sign up for our Healthy Living Newsletter SubscribeBy subscribing you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

The Latest in Bug Bites Identifying and Treating Spider BitesBy Markham HeidOctober 5, 2022 Why Mosquito Bites Itch and How to Get ReliefBy Markham HeidOctober 5, 2022 Everything You Need to Know About Mite and Flea BitesBy Markham HeidOctober 5, 2022 Bitten by a Tick How to KnowBy Markham HeidSeptember 26, 2022 How to Know When It s a Chigger BiteBy Markham HeidSeptember 22, 2022 Bug Bites and Stings Everything You Need to Know By Markham HeidNovember 26, 2020 Do Natural Bug Repellents Actually Work Despite the itchy annoyance of bug bites and the risk of dangerous diseases that some insects carry, a lot of people don’t want to use bug repellents

By Lisa RapaportSeptember 4, 2020 Is It Skeeter Syndrome Here’s everything you need to know about allergic reactions to mosquito bites, including what to do about them

By Lisa RapaportJune 30, 2020 Study Mosquitoes Find You and Decide to Bite Because They Can Smell Your Breath The new research may one day help scientists design new mosquito control options

By Lisa RapaportJuly 23, 2019 6 Things You Need to Know About the Asian Longhorned TickExpert answers on potential risks and why health officials are keeping a close eye on this foreign invader

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