Natural Insect Repellents – Safe and Effective

To deter insects from landing on the surface, insect repellent sprays are applied to the skin and clothes. The use of repellents may help to prevent and control insect-borne disease outbreaks. Many insects have diseases like West Nile fever, Lyme disease, bubonic plague and others that bring and spread. Some repellents are very effective against pests, but they contain synthetic ingredients that are potentially unsafe for people. Repellents of natural insects are highly effective, non-toxic alternatives which do not contain harmful synthetic ingredients.

DEET (N , N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) is one of the most common active ingredients used in the synthetic insect repellents. DEET is a potent insecticide which is used in over 400 products. Though DEET as an insect repellent is very successful, its safety record is questionable. When applied directly to the skin, it absorbs over half of DEET into the bloodstream. It can cause side effects like rashes in the skin, muscle spasms, nausea, lethargy and irritability. Strong reactions can result in seizures or death. DEET is a moderate pesticide, and studies have shown that its use in and around water sources may not be safe. The health concerns arising from using DEET therefore far outweigh its effectiveness against insects.Visit our website: indefiniteadventure.com

There are normal, safe, and efficient alternatives to DEET. Insect repellents can be made from organic ingredients, all of which are not unsafe to humans. These products are made from natural sources which repel some insects. Some of these ingredients act as insecticides and others repel only pests. Such natural repellents for insects are primarily produced from essential oils obtained from plant sources. Most natural repellents are just as effective as DEET, and they have an enormous advantage as they are not toxic to humans.

Insect repellents work with a fragrance which insects avoid naturally. This odor helps to mask the human scent which attracts insects at first. Many natural repellents from insects include the citronella aromatic oil. Citronella is an essential oil that is derived from Cymbopogon plant leaves. Its lemon-like fragrance is pleasant to most people, but offensive to mosquitoes and other insects. Citronella has been licensed as a non-toxic pesticide by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Other essential aromatic oils commonly found in repellents for natural insects include lavender, rosemary, peppermint, cedarleaf, lemongrass, eucalyptus, pennyroyal and bergamot. Research has also shown that the neem oil is an important mosquito repellent. Cinnamon, castor, cedar, clove, geranium, oak, basil, thyme, and garlic are other volatile vegetable oils that act well as natural repellents. Soya oil does not have direct insect repellent activity, but is often used as a fixative to extend some essential oils’ shorter duration of action. Products that contain multiple natural repellents tend to be more effective for insects than those that contain a single ingredient only.

Most natural repellents contain water as the carrier base, instead of alcohol. Water is less volatile and isn’t evaporating as fast as alcohol. Water has less dermal absorption and this makes the skin more repellent. Water based products are going to last longer as there is less need to reapply. Many people are also sensitive to the strong aroma of alcohol, so the products made from water have a more pleasant smell.

Use insect repellents can help monitor and avoid insect borne disease outbreaks. Many insects have diseases that carry and spread such as West Nile fever, Lyme disease, and bubonic plague. Natural, organic insect repellents are available which do not contain harmful synthetic ingredients, and are just as effective. Also many repellent products serve a dual purpose and contain sunscreen to protect the skin from both the sun and insects.