By Beng Feliciano
Among the biggest worries of moms these days are mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue, malaria, and Japanese encephalitis. Hence, parents need to be extra cautious, especially this rainy season, when these pesky insects abound. But worry not, because there are ways to beat these bugs:
Eliminate the source. You've probably heard this before: mosquitoes love standing water. So, remove items that inadvertently become water collectors, and put lids on your water bins.
To prevent plants from becoming mozzies’ hiding places, make sure they are placed in pots that have holes to prevent water collection. You may also want to incorporate eucalyptus and citronella in your garden as these are known to repel mosquitoes.
If you have a mini pond or waterfall in your garden area, make sure to clean it regularly.
Declutter. Mosquitoes love hiding in cluttered, messy places. So, when you clear out areas, you can easily detect mosquitoes and eliminate them.
Choose a repellant that suits your family. Water-based or oil-based? Lotion or cream? Spray or stick? The choices seem to be endless these days, so choose what works best with your family.
As for my own kids, so far, we love Indigo Baby's Shoo Fly Don't Bother Me Insect repellent. Tried and tested! It's all-natural and non-greasy. The smell is also gentle on the nose.
In addition, mosquito patches by Cycles & Cradle work great for us. No need to keep on changing them either! We just spray Bite Block's mosquito repellent on each patch every 30 minutes. I also recommend Control Freak's line of repellants.
If you're into pure essential oils, try out various blends using eucalyptus, lemongrass, citronella, tea tree (or melaleuca), or rosemary. Other essential oils that repel mosquitos are peppermint, lemon, lavender, thyme, geranium, cinnamon, clove, and sage.
Many moms probably don’t know this yet: the key to using a mosquito repellant is the correct application. If you’re going to use it together with sunscreen for outdoor fun, put on the sunscreen first, giving some time for your skin to absorb it. Then spread the repellant evenly on exposed skin.
For babies below one year old, avoid applying repellant directly onto the skin. Instead, use an all-natural spray on their bed, car seat, carrier, or strollers. Mosquito patches can also be applied on the middle or upper part of the back of their clothes.
Try out bite remedies. Skin reactions to bites vary. Those red itchy bumps are the body’s allergic reaction to the mosquito’s saliva. Some people scratch and then disregard the bite, while for others, it's a seriously itchy and unbearable situation. Thus, providing relief for mosquito bites is important, especially to kids.
So far, our family’s go-to products for bites are Motherlove Green Salve, Body Food All Natural Balm Around, Hippie Healer by Dear Jamie, ByNature Baby Salve and Doterra Lavender Essential Oil diluted in Doterra Fractionated Coconut Oil. Diffusing essential oils is also very effective.
Know the right timing for using insect traps with UV Light. We've found the best way to use our Hanns Insect Trap. Before sleeping, we turn off and leave the insect trap on throughout the night. In the morning, we are pleasantly surprised with the quantity of dead mosquitos in the trap.
Other quick tips:
• Keep your house and surroundings clean. Check if the windows and rubber edging of sliding doors are fitted well. Also, try out all-natural sprays for the garden. Try Indigo Baby's Room Spray!
• If any member of your family has a serious reaction to the bites, consider using Mozzigear's 100% Natural Mosquito Click. It inhibits the production of histamine at the bite, reducing inflammation and itchiness.
It takes various approaches to get mosquito issues under control. But one thing is for sure, we will not let mosquitoes take over our love for the environment and the great outdoors!
About the author:
Beng Feliciano is a mom of three, and the co-founder of The Parenting Emporium or TPE, a retail social enterprise dedicated to helping make the parenthood journey easier for everyone. She and her partner, Maricel Cua, hope to achieve this through TPE’s selection of parent-approved, high quality products, informative expert-led classes and events, encouraging support groups, and purpose-filled advocacies. Find out more about TPE on Facebook and Instagram.