Mosquitoes, which according to the American Academy of Dermatology can be the worst bugs for carrying diseases, love me.
But I don’t love them.
When they’re out, they attack me with a vengeance, leaving big welts that I can’t seem to resist scratching and making them even worse. Likewise, ticks, which are also rampant this time of year, make me shudder remembering the ones I’ve had to remove from dogs, kids and grandkids.
If you’re like me and love gardening and summer nights on the deck or patio, here’s a few tips from Soony Hall, PA-C, with Via Christi Clinic’s Dermatology department, for avoiding pest-related irritations and illness:
- Use repellents containing DEET to protect yourself from mosquitoes and ticks. Look for specially formulated repellents containing a lower percentage of DEET to keep children protected, too. Clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts and full-length pants, can offer further protection.
- Always check for ticks on clothing and skin when coming indoors, even from your own backyard.
- The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many species of mosquitoes. Take extra care to use repellant and protective clothing during evening and early morning.
- Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water, so be sure to limit the number of places around your home that hold water.
- Seek treatment for bug or insect bites if any of the following are present: fever, chills, night sweats, excessive pain, swelling, redness, discolored drainage and any dark red/black discoloration of the skin at the bite.