Thursday, May 29, 2008

Mosquito Repellent

Now that it's summer vacation, my four-year-old refuses to come inside at night. His friends were playing outside at 8:00p.m. and I saw him start to swat at mosquitos. I made him come inside. I do have mosquito repellent with deet, but I don't like to use it. I don't know if there's any merit to what I think, but putting all those chemicals on my kids doesn't sit well. I do use it sometimes, but I try to avoid it. However, I don't want him to get the West Nile Virus. That would obviously be worse.

We ran this story on WHOI. It made my fears about safety heightened.

"Deet has been the most commonly used mosquito repellent for the last five decades, but scientists believe they've discovered a better one. Ulrich Bernier and colleagues at the USDA and the University of Florida began their search with a database of more than 40- thousand chemicals.

Using sophisticated software, scientist were able to predict new molecules which might be more effective, and safe. The team then created those new compounds in the lab, and compared them to deet. The research so far predicts good repellency and safety, but the researchers say thorough safety tests must be done before the new repellents can be tested on people."

Why are scientists looking at a "safer" repellent if the ones on the market are safe? Ugh! Do you put bug repellent with deet on your kids? Does anyone use the more natural bug repellents that don't contain deet? Do they work?

-NewsAnchorMom Jen

2 comments: said...

Got this from Rachael, Good info:

We live in the woods on a lake in serious mosquito-country and have tried some different things, but nothing works as well as DEET. I buy the ones that have less than 5% as the AAP recommends (I think they do anyway). I try to use it sparingly and wash it off when we come in.

Just so you know, the little battery-powered frogs that you clip on the stroller or clothing that are supposed to emit a high-frequency noise like a dragonfly...DON'T WORK AT ALL! lol. Save your money on those. ;o)

We do have one of those huge mosquito trappers that use propane and an attractant. I think it works for a 1/2 acre...but we have over 4. Anyway, it totally works! I have a little net full of the creeps to prove it. Unfortunately, they are quite expensive.

good luck!

ps - I LOVE reading your blog. Wish I would have found it sooner. ;o)

Anonymous said...

An alternative to DEET, which is a neurotoxin for mosquitoes as well as humans (most pesticides are), is treatment. The one we use for WNV is safe enough for infants.

It's nice to know there's something to do if your child comes down with a stiff neck and fever.

Anybody can download our treatment protocol for free by clicking on the West Nile link at

Dave Moskowitz MD FACP
GenoMed, Inc.
Ticker symbol: GMED (on Pink Sheets)

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