Just as any paranoid mother would, we habitually slop on spoonfuls of insect repellent lotion on our little one’s skin, short of putting an anti-mosquito force-field around him or her. Though it is hardly in our power to turn our daughter into Violet of The Incredibles, we can still rely on the effectiveness of some mosquito repellents when it comes to keeping dengue-causing mosquitoes at bay.
Much has been said about the negative effects of DEET on children’s skin, but the truth is, mosquito repellents with DEET are the most effective. The safe amount of DEET found in repellents is thirty percent. However, if your kid isn’t going to stay outdoors for a long period of time, a 4-7% DEET concentration is enough for him. Citronella, which is the popular alternative to DEET, is effective too. Just be cautious when using it on kids with sensitive skin, though.
It is never advisable to apply insect repellents on the skin of babies two months and younger. You’re better off using mosquito nets or screens to keep them insect-free. But if they won’t stop bugging you to take them outdoors to play, better dress them in long pants and long sleeves. Also, avoid going out during early mornings and early evenings, as these are the peak biting times for mosquitoes.
Now that you’re more acquainted with mosquito repellents, you can make smarter and less frantic choices when buying such products for your children.