Mosquito bites occur as small blisters or swollen red spots where mosquitoes suck blood from the human body. These bites can be both painful and itchy. It is important to take precautions against mosquitoes as they are carriers of various diseases like the West Nile disease. Mostly female mosquitoes carry these viruses and they tend to bite more frequently as they need the blood for nutrition to breed.
Different preventive measures can be taken to avoid mosquito bites. At night while sleeping you can opt for mosquito nets to keep mosquitoes away. You can also use nets to cover your baby’s pram or stroller while going for a walk. One must be careful not to open the net too wide so as to allow mosquitoes to enter. Also check for holes and tears in the net and if any mend them without delay as they can allow mosquitoes to enter inside the net. Though nets are very safe it is not practically possible to always stay within the net to avoid mosquitoes.
Therefore one has to opt for other preventive measures especially outdoors as mosquitoes are attracted to foliage. If you want to spend time gardening or mowing your lawn or your children want to play in the park, then you and your kids are bound to be bitten profusely if you have not taken any precaution. A mosquito repellant cream or lotion is a good option at such times. Such creams are safe on children and even infants above two months of age. Mosquitoes are attracted to the smell of human breath and perspiration due to the presence of carbon dioxide and lactic acid. You have to apply the cream on the exposed areas of the body as its smell will shield the human body odors and prevent mosquitoes from coming close.
Another option to avoid mosquito bites is to use mosquito sprays on the clothes that you wear for your outdoor activity. You can also use some mosquito repellant spray in the bedroom for about 10 – 15 minutes before sleeping to drive mosquitoes away.
Most of the repellant creams and sprays contain DEET which is a safe chemical for application on human skin. However, even though it is safe, many of us may still cringe at the idea of using chemicals on our skin or breathing in chemicals through sprays.
Nowadays, there are many mosquito creams and sprays available which are made of plant oils like lemongrass oil, citronella oil, castor oil, eucalyptus oil and the like. These oils have a strong smell which naturally repels mosquitoes and other insects. Using such natural creams and sprays is a safer option as there are no side effects like skin allergies and rashes associated with their use. However, whenever you use any mosquito repellant cream on children you should apply it sparingly for the first time to see if there is any allergic reaction. If there is none, you can continue to use it.
Incase you have had mosquito bites you should not scratch them in spite of the itchy sensation as that might lead to scars and marks on the skin. Instead wash the area with soap and water immediately to reduce the itchiness and inflammation.