How to Protect Yourself From Mosquitoes

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Mosquitoes are a nuisance. A bite from this elusive insect can trigger allergies and cause itchy red bumps to form on the skin. Not all mosquitoes bite though; male mosquitoes are known to feed exclusively on water and nectar. The female mosquitoes are the ones out to bite and suck blood out of unsuspecting victims. Female mosquitos are attracted to sweat and carbon dioxide emitted by the person’s body. Recent research also says that a person’s susceptibility to getting bitten by mosquitoes can be due to genetics. They can be attracted to cholesterol, lactic acid, and uric acid.

The problem is, mosquitoes don’t just trigger allergies, their bites can also transmit serious diseases.  Some of the deadly diseases that have been traced to mosquitoes are dengue fever, West Nile virus, malaria, yellow fever, and chinkungunya. Dengue fever, in particular, has become more prevalent in the recent years. It’s present in tropical countries in Asia, Americas, and Africa. Up to now, there is no vaccine to protect humans from dengue fever.

No More Mosquito Bites

The best way to protect yourself from mosquito-borne diseases is to get rid of mosquitoes for good, starting at your own home and offices. Call an exterminator or a pest control company to kill mosquitoes and get rid of any potential breeding grounds using safe practices and chemicals. Here are other recommended ways to drive away mosquitoes:

1. Cover yourself up. Wear long-sleeved shirts or trousers to prevent mosquito bites. Mosquitoes cannot penetrate clothing. If you are going camping or visiting countries with reported mosquito-borne diseases, it is best to wear protective clothing. Also, wear light-colored clothes. Mosquitoes are attracted to dark and striking colors such as black and red.

2. Use a bug spray or lotion. Bug sprays and lotions formulated to repel mosquitoes are available in local markets and drugstores. You can choose between natural and chemical formulas. Natural formulas usually come in the form of essential oils. Camphor, citronella and eucalyptus oil are known to be effective mosquito repellents. Chemical formulas usually include DEET, a popular insect repellent. However, DEET has been tied to neurological problems. There are no conclusive studies saying that DEET is unsafe so when it comes to choosing which insect-repellent is best for you, you just have to weigh the pros and cons of using one.

3. Clean your surroundings. Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water and they love dark places. Keep your surroundings dry and eliminate clutter to prevent mosquitoes from multiplying. Don’t neglect your yard. Keep everything organized and sanitary.

4. Keep your windows and doors closed. Mosquitoes usually come from outside your home. It’s best to keep your doors and windows closed at all times. If you need to open it for proper air circulation, you can use a screen mesh to keep insects from entering your home.

5. Surround yourself with plants that keep mosquitoes at bay. Citronella, mint, and lavender are known to repel mosquitoes. Mosquitoes also hate garlic. Eating garlic cloves provides mild protection from mosquitoes and it’s great for boosting your immune system, too.

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