Protect Your Family (and Pets) from Malicious Mosquito Bites
Mosquito bites and the resulting itching, swelling, and redness are familiar to most people because mosquitoes can live almost anywhere in the world. But mosquitoes are more than a nuisance. Their bites can result in serious health problems, causing them to be ranked among the most dangerous insects on Earth.
If your children are going to be outside during “mosquito season,” it is essential that you provide them with protection from mosquito bites. To help them avoid the pain, itching, and possibly more brought on by these pests, here are a few simple ways to protect your kids.
Mosquito Bites Cause Pain and Itching
Although mosquitoes can carry diseases, in all likelihood, all you’ll get for your trouble is a little pain and itching. The problem is, these sensations take a while to go away, and all you can do is suffer. Or is there a solution?
First of all, don’t let your children scratch the affected area. Not only will that fail to relieve the itching, but they’ll also end up making it worse.
Instead, have them lightly slap the affected area. This will momentarily provide some relief. Other ways to relieve their discomfort is to apply an ice cube or, believe it or not, roll-on deodorant. These remedies will help sooth the pain and itching.
DIY Natural Mosquito Repellent
There are several ways that your children can gain protection from mosquito bites. Some mosquito repellents can be found in your local drug store. However, concerns have been raised in the past over using such powerful chemicals directly on your skin.
If this concerns you, and you prefer a more natural solution, there are plenty of things you can try. Vitamin B, for example, creates an odor on your body that the mosquitos do not like. Eating garlic has the same effect.
You might even try scented shampoos and soaps. Even simpler methods include wearing long sleeves and pants, avoiding free-standing water, and staying near fans. For infants, investing in a netting that goes over their stroller can work wonders.
“If your children are going to be outside during “mosquito season,” it is essential that you provide them with protection from mosquito bites.”
-Rest Easy Pest Control
There are roughly 2000 species of mosquitoes, with about 10 percent of those primarily in North America. Although mosquito-borne diseases are not as common in North America as in other continents, the threat is real. Here the diseases that can be transmitted through mosquito bites:
West Nile Virus
This disease strikes in North America during summer. It can cause the brain to inflame and can be fatal. We certainly don’t want to downplay the diseases that a mosquito bite can cause. Although the disease is rare, there’s just no way to know for sure until a bite has occurred.
Last year, mosquitos carrying the West Nile virus were found in the NYC area. While this doesn’t mean we should all panic, there is a definite cause for both concern and preparation. Protection from mosquito bites should always be on our minds, for the sake of both our family and ourselves.
This is a pet problem, but knowing how much people care for their pets, it’s also a human one. Mosquitos can transmit heartworm larvae to your favorite animals, resulting in cardiovascular issues and ultimately death.
Although this disease doesn’t generate in North American, anyone traveling to Africa, Asia, South American, and parts of Europe is at risk of contracting it. Malaria symptoms vary but include fever and coma, and the disease can be fatal.
There is a vaccine for this disease, which is found in Africa and South America, but without vaccination, it can be transmitted between people via mosquitoes.
The Zika virus affects pregnant women, as unborn babies are subject to severe birth defects including blindness, deafness, seizures and other congenital defects, and brain damage through microcephaly.
How to Protect Your Family and Pets from Mosquito Bites
Although complete mosquito elimination is impossible, homeowners can take steps to help minimize the risk of mosquito-borne disease:
1. Keep your gutters clean to avoid standing water, which is the number-one key in trying to achieve mosquito elimination.
2. Provide drainage for water that tends to form in pools in your yard
3. Make sure water in outdoor items such as bird baths and plant buckets stays fresh, and look out for things that will hold water, such as old tires
4. Make sure water doesn’t stand in your basement
5. Use insect repellent when outside
6. Take all necessary medical precautions such as vaccination before traveling outside of North America
7. Give your pets heartworm prevention medication
Mosquito Control: DIY vs. the Pros
If you already have mosquitoes, you can use bug zappers to try to eliminate them, but this is only a very partial remedy. There are also plenty of products on the market for do-it-yourselfers to try to eliminate the pests completely. The most popular method is the use of foggers, which spray chemicals that kill them.
If you try this, be sure to use foggers that kill both mosquito larvae and adults. But many do-it-yourselfers lack the knowledge of mosquito biology and habitats to effectively use foggers or other chemical treatment methods. The treatment may seem to work, but then they return.
If mosquitoes are literally eating you up, the surest way to get rid of them is to call a pest control specialist. They have professional-grade chemicals and the expertise to use them properly.***