How to avoid mosquito bites

By May 25, 2016health
"how to avoid mosquito bites" text against micro image of mosquito on skin

Mosquito biting human armNow that we’re well into the thick of summer, it’s time to talk about everyone’s favorite pest – the mosquito. While they’ve always been carriers of diseases like West Nile and Dengue, it’s imperative that you avoid them this year now that the Zika virus has made it to the United States – especially if you are pregnant! And if you have Type O blood, watch out. Studies have shown that mosquitos like Type O blood over the other types. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to prevent mosquito bites:

Use insect repellant

This is hands down the best way to prevent mosquito bites. You may hate bug sprays, either because of the chemicals they contain or the smell, but you cannot deny that they are effective. They are safe too, even the ones with DEET! If you want to avoid that particular active ingredient though, you have other options. Look for insect repellents containing picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535. These will all keep the mosquitos away when used properly. Make sure to follow the directions and reapply as needed.

Keep them out of your home

This is a no brainer, and undoubtedly at some point in your life you’ve heard the following (or something similar) “Close the door! We don’t live in a barn!” How many of you just had flashbacks of Grandma? Well Grandma was right! If a mosquito gets inside your home, he now has a dedicated food supply. Congratulations, your house is now his refrigerator. The good news is they don’t like the cold, so as long as your A/C is running, it will eventually kill him.

Wear light clothing and avoid flowery body sprays

If you’re a fan of dark t-shirts and flowery scents, mosquitos will go right for you. Swap the darks out for light clothes, and skip the perfume if you’re going to be outside for an extended period of time at dusk.

Drink water

Are you a beer drinker? Did you know that mosquitoes prefer people who drink beer to people that drink water? It hasn’t been determined yet if other alcohols have a similar effect on mosquitoes. Err on the side of caution – if you’re going to be drinking alcohol, stay inside.

Cover up

Wear pants and long-sleeved shirts – that way there is a physical barrier between your skin and the mosquitos. We know that summers down here get pretty darn hot, which makes this method of protection a bit impractical. Although, since mosquitos usually wait until the evening to come out, you don’t have to wear these clothes all day. Keep in mind that it is possible to be bitten through your clothes. Not necessarily jeans, but yoga pants or similar tight elastics? Absolutely.