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Understanding Insect and Spider Bites -- Prevention

How Can I Prevent Insect and Spider Bites?

DEET is the most effective insect repellent. It can be found in a variety of lotions and sprays and purchased in most drug stores. There has been some concern about the negative effects of using this chemical, particularly for children, but none of the natural plant products are likely to be as reliable. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that DEET not be used on children younger than two months of age.

Picaridin is a plant-derived compound and is also somewhat effective against mosquitoes and ticks.

Recommended Related to First Aid

Understanding Frostbite -- Diagnosis and Treatment

Frostbite is initially diagnosed based on symptoms and a physical exam. Various imaging techniques may be used to determine the severity of tissue damage three to five days after re-warming. After one to three weeks, imaging may also be used to help evaluate the condition of any potentially damaged blood vessels and to identify severely frostbitten areas that may need to be amputated.

Read the Understanding Frostbite -- Diagnosis and Treatment article > >

Essential oil of eucalyptus (eucalyptus globulus) is a natural insect repellent. Make a solution by adding five drops or eucalyptus oil to 1 cup of water and dab it on your skin. Essential oil of citronella also discourages insects when placed on exposed skin. A few dabs of calendula (calendula officinalis) ointment on the face, arms, and legs may keep insects away and is also available as a commercially available product.


WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on March 22, 2015

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