People’s Pharmacy: Protecting kids from mosquito bites
Q. What mosquito repellents are safe for kids? I seem to remember that you have written about problems with DEET.
A. DEET (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.
Joe Graedon, M.S., and Teresa Graedon, Ph.D. have put together numerous other detailed questions & answers, you can find them here.
May 6, 2022
Outdoor Life: Do You Really Need a Water Filter for Backpacking and Mountain Hunting?
Fresh drinking water is essential. This water filtration system ensures you will never run out as long as there is a nearby natural water source. It can filter out bacteria, protozoa and microplastics.
Faster and more efficient than pumping or waiting for chemical treatments, the Sawyer Squeeze System offers on-the-go hydration at a good flow. This product is long-lasting, affordable, reliable, cleanable, and very user-friendly.
But Sawyer was way ahead of me — 15 years ahead, to be precise. In 2008, the brand started its Clean Water for All initiative, which provides Sawyer filters to developing countries around the world. And the company spends 90% of its profits funding it.