Dear Amy: How do we avoid getting mosquito bites? — Jamie W., Grand Haven, Michigan
Dear Jamie: While there is no foolproof way to avoid mosquitoes, you can reduce your risk of getting bitten. Insect repellents containing DEET or icaridin are useful, as well as natural products such as oil of lemon eucalyptus.
Did you know that mosquitoes can bite through fabric? Experts recommend wearing loose-fitting clothing, especially in humid weather. You can even spray your clothing with insect repellent if you know you will be out on a humid evening. In certain areas, a mosquito net can be effective protection when you sleep.
If you do get bitten, there are several home remedies to relieve the itching. Toothpaste, lavender oil and honey are just a few of the natural products with itch-relieving properties.
You don’t have to live near a lake or other body of water to be exposed to mosquitoes; standing water such as puddles, storm pools or low areas in your yard that fill with rainwater are mosquito breeding grounds. Find more tips for avoiding mosquito problems at the Mayo Clinic’s Mosquito Bites, tinyurl.com/h24bbdp.
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