How to Avoid Exposure to Mosquitoes

Even when following all the precautions above to eliminate mosquito habitat, some mosquitoes will still be around to spoil your fun. You can limit exposure to the mosquitoes that remain by using effective repellents and barriers.

  • Window and door screens should be 16-18 mesh and fit snugly, without gaps around the edges. Check your screens for holes and repair or replace them as needed.
  • Replace your outdoor lights with yellow “bug” lights. These lights do not repel insects, but mosquitoes and other pests are less likely to find them attractive and invade your yard.
  • When outdoors, apply a DEET-based insect repellent according to the directions on the label. DEET will need to be reapplied in 4-6 hours.
  • Treat clothing, sunshades, and screen houses with a permithrin-based product, such as Permanone. Permethrin repels both mosquitoes and ticks, and will last through several washes on your clothing.
  • Some insecticides available commercially may be used by the homeowner for mosquito control. Check the labels for EPA-approved products registered as effective against adult and larval mosquitoes. A light spray application around building foundations, shrubs, and grasses will keep adults from resting in these areas.
  • Use of some other repellent products, such as citronella candles and mosquito coils, may also be effective if used in windless conditions. Some concerns about mosquito coils, which are impregnated with chemicals, and possible respiratory impacts have been raised recently, however.

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