HEALTH – nothing breaks summer vacation as much as mosquito invasion. Nights are cut off by their nose bleeds, skin infected with pimples, itching all day … It's actually not an idea to have a relaxing summer break. If it is appropriate to undertake several simple preventive procedures (covering the standing water, carrying wide clothing), the skin is one of the most effective ways of barking.
Even more annoying in recent years, the arrival of a tiger mosquito to the metropolis encourages utmost caution: the bug brings with it a spectrum of tropical diseases such as dengue, chikungunya or zik. Although there is no epidemic in France, caution is still needed and it is necessary to learn how to effectively protect it.
But how can you be sure your defender is effective against all kinds of mosquitoes? Which composition will privilege during your purchase? DEET, Icaridine, IR 3535, PMD, lemon eucalyptus, essential oils … What are the ingredients most effective?
HuffPost reviewed a number of official recommendations by the Ministry of Health (Bulletin of Arthropoda Reptiles in March 2016 and Health Recommendations for 2018 Travelers from the Weekly Epidemiological Bulletin) and reviewed with Bruno Lagabbe, co-founder of Anti-Mao.com, an independent site vendor and product tester , is very cautious in various studies published on this topic.
HuffPost particularly in two types of products: one for protection in non-epidemic areas, and one for focus on the case when one of the diseases reported by a mosquito tiger is reported.
Eucalyptus Lemon: Effective and low toxicity for areas beyond the epidemic
Stop smoking: if a mongrel tiger is present in 51 French department, no epidemic of the aforementioned serious illness has been reported. There is no need to jump to products with high content of DEET, the most powerful molecule on the market, but strongly discouraged for children and pregnant women (see below), which may have side effects even in adults.
According to Bruno Lagabbe, in the case of use in France, it is quite enough to turn to softer products like those with lemon eucalyptus until an epidemic is revealed. The active ingredient of this plant is listed in the composition called "PMD", "p-mentane-3,8-diol", "parmentane-3,8-part", "PMD, menthoglycol" or "Citriodol". A substance that comes from the tree it is called, and may sometimes be of natural origin or synthesis, where the latter is less effective.
For experts who have been interested in mosquitoes for nearly 20 years, it is better to favor concentrations of "20 to 30% minimum" in all cases, although this is not always an effective product.
However, it seems that Mosi-Guard and its refuse spray agree with 30% Citriodiol, the active ingredient of lemon eucalyptus. Specifically, it gets a positive opinion from UFC Que Choisir, which considers it one of the "least toxic" and can therefore be used by small children and adults who want less aggressive assets. The journal also recommends it to pregnant women, although the Ministry of Health is not in the same opinion in its comparative table of repatriation.
Keep in mind that it has to be more frequently refreshed, depending on exposure, heat, bath …
In the same model, our expert recommends biovectrol and its eucalyptus product, which also had the opportunity to test effectiveness in real conditions in Montpellier (area reported as infected with a tiger mosquito).
The most effective repellents (but watch out for side effects)
However, according to many sources, DEET (a chemical used as a dispenser of the age of 50) is by far the most effective asset against many insects, including mosquitoes. If you think you are in an infected and epidemic zone, in France or abroad, the product will have the greatest effect if you comply with DEET's concentration of at least 25%, as the UFC Que note chooses.
However, it should be borne in mind that this product may have side effects, and should be carefully handled around plastic and glass, may be damaged. Above all, it is used with great care for pregnant women and children under the age of six. Thus, the Ministry of Health strongly restricts the use of products with a concentration of more than 20% of DEET in children younger than 2 years and advises its application to pregnant women only if the disease is a risk vector.
Bearing in mind these tips, Bruno Lagabbe agrees again with UFC Que Choisir's recommendations for citing the Insect Screen and its spray for "infected surfaces" at a concentration of 50% of DEET (maximum permitted in France). But as the Consumer Magazine reminds us that the product is "not put in all hands". You are only entitled to a purchase in the event of a reported epidemic or in the country where one of the diseases communicated by the mosquito tiger is present.
And the most natural solution?
Ultrasound, Bracelets, Essential Oils … In the case of mosquitoes, tigers or common infections, it may be tempting to turn to more natural solutions. Many bloggers and naturopaths will advise you to mix essential oil of lemon grass, lemon eucalyptus or geranium, with vegetable oil for skin application.
The official recommendations are clear: "It is strongly recommended not to use essential oils whose performance, typically less than 20 minutes, is insufficient," the Ministry of Health said, reapplying UFC Que Choisir tests that condemn utterly helpless mosquito solutions .
The same story on ultrasound bracelets so that efficiency has never been proven and is not recommended on all sides.
However, Bruno Legabbe does not hesitate to advise using the air conditioner or simply a fan in the room, one of the most natural repellents. "Air flow interferes with insects that are no longer found, so it's a good addition to the repellents during the summer," concludes the expert.
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