How to safely use mosquito repellents on children

How to safely use mosquito repellents on children

Protecting your child from harmful mosquito bites is often an over-looked task when it comes to parenting. It’s not something they teach you – new parents learn this one on the fly.

Lazy parents often use adult repellents,  without knowing the downside of using  certain chemical sprays on infants. Below are some tips which can help parents decrease the risk and help keep those nasty mosquitoes away.

** Note:  these TIPS seem super obvious, but you’d be surprised at the amount of parents who are oblivious To the dangers or (sadly) don’t care enough.

#1.  NEVER give the bottle to your infant, even as a toy.

This seems like an obvious thing (!), but it’s crazy the amount of babies you see playing with the actual repellent at festivals and firework dislays. Infants are very likely to accidentially spray themselves in their eyes or mouth.

#2. Don’t spray insect repellent on cuts, wounds or irritated skin.

#3. Repellents containing permethrin should not be applied to the skin.

Permethrin is safe for adults, but not for babies under 2-years-old.

Learn more about permethrin and the danger of bug bites on the FDA website.

#4. Use an amount of repellent which is just to cover your child’s exposed skin

#5. Never spray it directly  on to the face: apply it to your hands and then spread it over the face.

#6. Don’t re-apply the repellent unless necessary.

Using an excessive amount of repellent does not imply greater effectiveness. Do not put repellent on under the child’s clothing. It’s not doing anything useful.

#7. Wash your child’s skin with soap and water to remove any remaining repellent when they go back inside, and wash their clothes before reuse.

#8. Avoid eyes and other delicate areas such as the mouth and use the repllent sparingly around the ears.

#9. Never apply insect repellent to children younger than two months.

Other relevant questions:

How do you know if your baby will have a negative or an allergic reaction?

Apply a little product on a small area of ​​the skin to see if it produces a reaction. If  you suspect that the child is having a reaction, such as a rash, to an insect repellent, you should stop using the product and wash your child’s skin with soap and water. Call a poison control center or the emergency room if necessary.

If I’m on vacation, what should I do?

If you travel to places of risk such as tropical areas, you should consult the official recommendations and do your research online before you head abroad. Mosquitoes in some countries can be especially harmful, spreading bacteria and sometimes fatal diseases. Adults are also at risk so please do research for yourself as well.