Insect repellent may be your best friend all year long, especially during vacation.
Taking the proper precautions when you need to use repellent may help prevent any later discomfort caused by mosquitos such as mosquito bites, itching, pain and even the transmission of diseases such as dengue and malaria, among others. The following are a few recommendations issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
- Choose the right repellent. There are a variety of products available on the market, but not all can keep all types of insects away. To know which one to choose, look at the label to find what the active pesticide is.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions. The label should indicate the how much and how often the product should be used to be most effective as well as its potential negative side effects. Many products specify whether they can be applied to clothes or directly on the skin or not.
- f it is used together with another product, use them in the right order. If you are going to be outdoors and in the sun, you will definitely need to use sunscreen and bug repellent. The recommendation is to first apply sunscreen and then repellent. One reason to use these two separately is because sunscreen should be applied more frequently.
- Be careful with certain parts of the body. Carefully cover all of the areas of your body that are exposed. Insects, especially mosquitos, can easily find those parts that were overlooked. Avoid getting the product in your eyes and in your nose, and do not apply on wounds, cuts or irritated skin.
- Take extra precautions with children. Children under age three should not use products that contain lemon eucalyptus oil. If you use an aerosol bug spray on a child, be careful not to let it in the child’s eyes. Never apply bug repellent on children’s hands, as they often bring them to their eyes.
- Reapply as needed. Do this especially if you are sweating a lot, are going in and out of the pool or if insects begin to go after you again.