All Creatures Great and Small

DEET

It is officially monsoon season in some areas and we are getting rain today, which the ecosystem really needs. The rain won’t attract more bugs to your house as they will be happy outside with the water they need. What will happen is a lot of bugs that breed in water will be showing up and this includes mosquitoes. . Here is some information on mosquito repellents.

DEET. What is DEET. Someone asked me why I never recommend it when all government agencies always recommend it. DEET is short for N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide (also known as N,N-diethyl-3-methylbenzamide).

In 1998, the EPA made it illegal for any product containing DEET to make any child safety claims. Products with DEET are required to carry instructions that they should not be used at all for children under 6 months. Additional required warnings state that for children 6 months to 2 years, only concentrations of less than 10% DEET should be used, and only once a day. For children from 2 -12 years old, only concentrations under 10% should be used, and repellents should not be applied more than 3 times a day. Some people who are exposed to DEET have experienced negative health effects, including rashes, skin irritation, numb or burning lips, nausea, headaches, dizziness and difficulty concentrating. Considering the damage it can do to children and some adults, why use it?

There are non-toxic insect repellents available. You can go online and Google non-toxic mosquito repellents and find some. I used to use catnip when I lived in Corrales where there were a lot of mosquitoes. Greenbug has a good mosquito repellent made from cedar. You can get that online as well. You can also make your own mosquito repellent. Recipe below. You have to apply these products more often, but they are safer than DEET.

Why do agencies insist on recommending DEET products? The more DEET products that the chemical industry can sell the better for the economy I guess. Also better for the pharmaceutical industry when people have to get drugs to counter the effect of DEET if they have a reaction. We live in a chemically controlled country. The more chemicals we use the more money certain industries make.

Here is a recipe for a very good repellent that you can make yourself.
Combine in a 16 oz. bottle:
15 drops lavender oil
3-4 Tbsp. of vanilla extract
1/4 Cup lemon juice.
Fill bottle with water. Shake. Ready to use

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About askthebugman

I have been in the pest management industry for over 40 years. In that time I have used almost every pesticide available to control so-called “pests”. With this experience, I have learned over the years that the pesticides we use are far more dangerous than the pests we are trying to control. As a result, it has become a passion for me to improve the quality of life for humans and the planet, by assisting people to not only become more educated and aware of their environment – but also by learning to manage their home and business with a sustainable and healthier approach to tending to unwanted infestations of bugs. Please enjoy my blog posts, check out my publications, utilize my services, or simply stay in touch if you have a bug question…

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