The People's Pharmacy: Protecting kids from mosquito bites
QUESTION: What mosquito repellents are safe for kids? I seem to remember that you have written about problems with DEET.
ANSWER: DEET, or N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide, has been controversial for decades. It was developed by the U.S. military shortly after World War II to protect troops from dengue, malaria and other tropical diseases carried by mosquitoes. In 1957, it was released on the consumer market. DEET is effective in repelling ticks as well as mosquitoes, so it can help protect youngsters from Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever as well as West Nile virus.
Over the years, there have been a few reports of neurological reactions in young children (Human & Experimental Toxicology, January 2001). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Environmental Protection Agency both say that DEET is safe as long as parents follow the instructions on the label.
If you prefer to avoid DEET, there are effective alternatives. Pediatrician Alan Greene recommends picaridin-containing products, such as Natrapel and Sawyer, on his website DrGreene.com.
Products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus are also effective and considered safe for children. Consumer Reports suggests that adults should apply insect repellent to their own hands and then rub it on children’s exposed skin.
May 6, 2022
Outdoor Life: Do You Really Need a Water Filter for Backpacking and Mountain Hunting?
My only complaint is that eventually, backflushing won’t be enough. These can clog up after some time and no amount of back flushing will fix its low flow. I went through 2 on the AT. However, it will attach to Smart Water Bottles and most bladders!
Built for backcountry reliability and portability, the Sawyer Squeeze filter is our pick for the best portable water purifier.
The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).