IN most urban and rural areas of the country, mosquito populations are menacing throughout the year, except for some attenuation during summer and winter. Mosquitoes transmit diseases such as malaria, filariasis and many viral diseases such as the Japanese encephalitis, dengue haemorrhagic fever, yellow fever (in Africa), etc.
From conventional mosquito nets to coils, mats, creams, sprays, liquid-vaporisers and electric devices, the mosquito repellents market has no shortage of products. In a booming market, incense sticks and herbal sprays have also found patronage. Mosquito coils containing DDT and other organophosphorus compounds were not effective in repelling mosquitoes. Buzzers and electrocuting devices are also useless, just as mosquito repellents. Currently a variety of repellents are marketed in India in the form of mats, coils, lotions and vaporizers. These repellents use allethrin group of compounds, herbs, oils or diethy toluimide (DEET). The protection provided by these repellents generally lasts for 2 to 4 h.
But are they safe? Though consumers know about the products, many are unaware of the harmful effects of these products. V.S. Raghunathan, owner of Aesthetics, a store that sells repellent incense sticks, asks: “How can something that repels mosquitoes be good for human beings?” Respiratory physician Jayashree Narasimhan says she advises patients to use topical repellents or cover windows with nets. “Smoke-based repellents can trigger wheezing attacks though it is hard to say if they cause the problem,” she says. She does not advise the use of aerosol sprays, lest they trigger nose allergies or wheezing.
Most insect repellants out there are loaded with toxic chemicals, including the pesticide DEET, which is so poisonous that even the Environmental Protection Agency says you should wash it off your skin when you return indoors, avoid breathing it in and not spray it directly on your face. Think about it–if this chemical can kill mosquitoes, it can likely do some harm to other life forms too. Generally, pregnant women are bombarded by advice about avoiding chemicals. And some insect repellants–DEET, for example — come with a long list of warnings.
The chemical is the best insect repellent people have ever invented. Nothing else has the same history of efficacy, although a few others have strong evidence for them, too. Still, in regions where people are at risk for serious insect-borne diseases such as malaria or West Nile virus, DEET is what doctors recommend. In addition, doctors recommend using DEET in concentrations between 20 percent and 50 percent. The idea is that lower concentrations require people to reapply more frequently than they’re apt to (while concentrations higher than 50 percent don’t necessarily work better or longer). This means if you want DEET protection, you’ll have to resign yourself to using pretty high concentrations of the stuff.
The best solution – QM mosquito killer
with mosquitoes. Before you buy one of mosquitoes killing machines, you need to check first if its approach is suitable for your case and you’re quite comfortable to use it. With the right mosquito killer, you will be able to control the mosquitoes population and infestation problem easily, although this won’t make them stop from coming and bite you.
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