Thursday, April 28, 2005

Reet Petite, Don't Smell Like DEET

Good news for chemophobes who still want to protect themselves from West Nile Virus-bearing mosquitoes this season. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just announced that mosquito repellents containing oil of lemon eucalyptus offer "long-lasting protection against mosquito bites." Previously, CDC only recommended repellents containing the chemical DEET, saying non-DEET repellents were not likely to offer the same degree of protection. CDC has also added repellents containing the chemical picaridin to its recommended list.

Getting rid of standing water around your domicile, wearing long sleeve shirts (not bloody likely on a hot Texas summer day, I know) and limiting time spent outdoors in the twilight hours when the little bloodsuckers are most active are other ways of avoiding bites. And if you're headed to a region where there's malaria and/or yellow fever, get vaccinated before you leave.

This public health announcement brought to you by the happy hands people at Beetsolonely (cue NBC "The More You Know" musical tag).


debbie said...

Good to hear, much better for kids!

Reminds me that in Costa Rica the natives give insect repellent an extra boost by mixing it with baby oil, and reapply throughout the day. Good way to keep the no-see-ums (biting midges) and mosquitoes from getting a good bite. The oil makes it difficult to get a firm grip and can even trap the fragile legs and wings of the flies.

Greg said...

That bit about Costa Rica is good to know. With any luck, I might get down there this summer.

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