Coverage of the Zika virus is in every news report. Pregnant women and couples seeking to get pregnant are encouraged to avoid areas prone to mosquitoes. Olympic athletes are concerned about going to Brazil this summer and the U.S. swim team has decided to train this summer in Atlanta instead of Puerto Rico where mosquitos are prevalent. On top of all that, mosquito bites are just annoying and can be a health concern for reasons other than Zika. There are lots of insect repellents on the market but is dousing ourselves in chemicals the answer? Here are some more natural ways to keep those pesky bugs away.
- Essential Oils. In a recent report, the “CDC finally admitted that products using oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE or PMD) can provide longer lasting protection against mosquitoes, just as the toxic chemical bug repellent DEET does.”  This is great news considering that many people experience side effects from DEET such as skin irritation, rashes, numb or burning lips, headaches, dizziness, nausea and difficulty concentrating.  You can buy the essential oil on Amazon or a natural grocery store. Repel also makes a great spray with lemon eucalyptus as the active ingredient.
2. Make Your Own. Here’s a great customizable recipe:
To make your own bug spray, you’ll need a 10-ounce spray bottle, and some simple ingredients.
• 5 ounces distilled water
• 4 ounces witch hazel
• Essential oils, choose three or four such as: citronella, lemongrass, rosemary, lavender, peppermint, basil, thyme, oil of lemon eucalyptus, geranium, tea tree oil (check with your pediatrician before using on kids and don’t use tea tree oil if the spray will be used on very young children )
• Add the distilled water and witch hazel to the 10-ounce spray bottle.
• Then add a total of 30 to 40 drops of essential oil.
• Shake well.
4. Prepare your yard by eliminating any standing water aka mosquito playgrounds.
5. Wear socks, pants, and long-sleeve shirts. You will still need to wear insect repellent on your exposed skin, but not as much!
Summer is here. It is possible to enjoy the great outdoors and still keep your family safe from mosquito-borne illnesses and unnecessary chemicals.
Do you have a natural insect repellent recipe or suggestion that works?
May 22, 2016
Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, Dr. Andrew Kender, and Dr. Jessica Eckman, Chiropractic Physicians
 https://healthiertalk.com/cdc-admits-essential-oil-effective-as-deet-for-mosquitoes, citing: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: West Nile virus
www.cdc.gov/westnile; CDC: West Nile Virus Fact Sheet
www.cdc.gov/westnile/resources/pdfs/wnvFactsheet_508 and CDC “West Nile Virus Prevention & Control” www.cdc.gov/westnile/prevention