With summer upon us, we can see that the number of mosquitoes has increased significantly. With the mosquito population on the rise, people need to find a way to protect themselves from these bites. Insect repellent is the most common form of preventing mosquito bites on the skin.
The most common insect repellents that are available in Canada contain one of two active ingredients: DEET (diethyltoluamide) or oil of lemon eucalyptus (P-Menthane 3, 8-diol). Any products that contain DEET are the most recommended and effective ways to prevent bites from happening over longer periods of time. Products that contain oil of lemon eucalyptus are good for short term exposure.
When choosing insect repellents, choose the one that will meet your needs.
- Children under 6 months of age should not use insect repellent.
- Children age 6 months to 2 years should only have one application of insect repellent per day with a DEET concentration of 10% or less.
- For children 2-12 years, a concentration of DEET no more than 10% should be used and may be used no more than 3 times per day.
- Children 12 and up and all adults a DEET concentration of 30% or less will provide sufficient protection.
Other ways to prevent insects from biting you is to wear long shirts and pants and avoid being outside at “peak” feeding times for mosquitoes (dusk and dawn).
If you have any other questions about the appropriate use of insect repellents, please speak with your local Apple Drugs pharmacist.