Is Your Mosquito Repellent Actually Working?

Author: Mosquito Squad of Chicago

Everyone has had that moment; you’re gearing up to enjoy the outdoors, grab your mosquito spray of choice, and then go about dousing yourself for a solid 5 minutes before commencing that hike around the lake, barbecue out back, or other summer activity. Then, not even 2 hours later, you find yourself being swarmed by blood-sucking mosquitoes intent on devouring every inch of exposed skin despite the more than adequate amount of repellent applied.

You aren’t going crazy though, that mosquito repellent that claims to last 8+ hours has probably stopped protecting you from the primary types of mosquitoes found in the Chicagoland area. A recent study conducted by Consumer Reports discovered that while most mosquito repellents maintain their effectiveness against West Nile carrying deer ticks for as long as 8 hours, these same sprays fend off mosquitoes like the Aedes Aegypti & Aedes Albopictus for just a single hour or as short as 30 minutes in some cases. Both species of mosquitoes represent the primary cause of the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses in America, and experts are now speculating that a Zika outbreak could reach American soil within the next couple months.

If you’ve been looking at all natural mosquito repellents as an alternative, you may be sacrificing a significant amount of both protection and effectiveness. There has been much debate concerning the safety of DEET, and while the Consumer Reports study found that most DEET based products performed consistently with their stated effective period, you do have a couple of other non-DEET options available. The study found that Sawyers Fisherman’s Formula, a product in which the main ingredient is 20% picaridin, and Repel Lemon Eucalyptus, another non-DEET based product with 30% oil of lemon eucalyptus, both effectively kept mosquitoes and ticks at bay for at least 7 hours.

The general rule of thumb is to only use repellent when necessary, and to use it sparingly, especially where young children or the elderly are concerned. This recommendation should be applied to all-natural repellent solutions, as well as any DEET based products used, the latter of which has been considered by the EPA to “not present a health concern to the general population” and is approved for use on children of all ages. Widely recognized as a product that mostly depends on your personal preference, the use of repellent becomes continually more vital to your everyday safety with the threat of mosquito-borne viruses such as Zika ever looming closer.

However, spraying yourself down with smelly oily repellent every time you step outside isn’t your only option, and not even the most effective option. As technology in the field of mosquito protection has continued to evolve and expand, options such as the use of mosquito misting system or regularly applied barrier sprays continue to prove their effectiveness for protecting homes, backyards, and even special events in public places. At Mosquito Squad Chicago, we excel at providing customers throughout the greater Chicagoland area with protection from annoying and potentially dangerous mosquitoes regularly. We’ve protected countless homes throughout the suburbs with our especially popular Barrier Spray treatments that keep mosquitoes away for periods as long as 21 days. Whether you are looking for a one time spray for your next barbecue, or to set up a spray program for your property, we’re sure we have the service that will be perfect for you.

Mosquito Squad of Chicago is a mosquito control services company that provides professional mosquito extermination in the Chicago land area. Give us a call at (630) 556-8315 to find out how we can help you with your mosquito problem.