Friday marks the first day of summer – and, unofficially, the beginning of Indy’s mosquito season!
Mosquitoes are more than an itchy nuisance. Some carry dangerous diseases such as West Nile virus and dengue fever. The itchy bites can be scratched open by children, leading to scabbing, scarring and skin infections. Prevention is the best strategy.
Protect your kids against mosquito bites this summer! Follow these “Five Ds” from the American Academy of Pediatrics:
- DRAIN standing water around the house weekly. That’s where mosquitoes lay eggs, including: tires, cans, flowerpots, clogged rain gutters, rain barrels, toys and puddles. Keep children away from areas near standing water.
- DUSK & DAWN – Mosquitoes are most active at dawn, dusk and early evening, so limit
- outdoor activities or take precautions to prevent mosquito bites.
- DEET is an effective ingredient to look for in insect repellents. Always follow label instructions carefully.
- Use an insect repellent with a DEET concentration of no higher than 30 percent.
- Don’t use a combination sunscreen/DEET product because you will need to reapply the product frequently, which could be harmful.
- Don’t use insect repellents with DEET on babies under 2 months of age.
- When applying DEET repellants on older infants, don’t use the product on cuts or around eyes or mouth. Apply lightly around the ears.
- Apply just enough insect repellent to cover your child’s skin
- DRESS – Accounting for the summer heat, dress your child in long pants and sleeves. Cover baby’s infant carrier with a mosquito net.
Download a free “Fight the Bite” coloring sheet for kids!
Learn more about how mosquitoes work.
Learn more about insect repellants appropriate for children.
Check out these top 10 fun facts about mosquitoes.
What outdoor fun do you have planned with your family this weekend?