Is It Safe To Use Deet (Repellent & Spray) For Children?

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You would definitely want only the best of everything for your baby. At the same time you do not want to go through the horrifying experience of observing some red bumps on the delicate, otherwise unblemished, skin of your baby due to insect or mosquito bites. Therefore, using mosquito repellent or a bug repellent is at times imperative.

One of the burning questions that often find a space in the minds of every mother is – Are insect repellents safe for my baby? Insect repellents in general help in keeping insects and bugs away from your little one as they have a substance named ‘DEET’ in it. For inquisitive moms, here is the chemical name of DEET – N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide. You can look for this name to check if it is present in an insect repellent or not. But, is deet safe for kids? Read here to know:

Is Deet Safe For Kids?

Insect repellents and sprays are bound to contain DEET if they have to be effective. Good news for mothers is that deet repellent for kids is safe. While it is always safe to take precautions with regards to usage of these insect or bug repellents. Her are some:

  • Insect repellent creams containing DEET should not be used on babies younger than 2 months of age.
  • It is recommended by medical experts that insect repellent creams that have DEET should not be applied more than once in a day. So apply it on your baby if you step out to parks or open areas or during a time when the habitation of insects or mosquitoes is more.
  • Select an insect repellent that has only 10% to 30% concentration of DEET.

[ Read: Insect Bite Allergies in Kids ]

  • You can use an insect repellent with lower concentration of DEET if your kid is going to spend only a couple of hours outdoors. Also, use an insect repellent with higher concentration of DEET if your kid is going to spend longer duration outdoors.
  • Do not use DEET on palms of the young kids because they tend to put their hands into their mouth often and it should not be consumed in any form.
  • DEET can be applied to bare skin and it can be used with the clothing as well. Do not apply it on the face as it might irritate their tender eyes.
  • Do not apply it on irritated skin or cuts as it might lead to a burning sensation that might be difficult for the kids to bear.
  • Do not use a single product that serves as a sunscreen and has DEET in it as sunscreen, which needs to be applied a number of times. DEET should be used sparingly and preferably only once.
  • Insect repellents and sprays that have a concentration of more than 30% of DEET are more toxic in nature and should be avoided or kept away from your kid.
  • After your kid is back indoors, wash away the insect repellent from his body by giving him a bath. Ensure that you give him a bath with soap and water in case the insect repellent has been used for consecutive number of days.
  • Clothes that come in contact with the insect repellent should be washed thoroughly with soap and water.

[ Read: Carbon Monoxide Poisoning In Children ]

Tips To Use Insect Repellents:

  • The correct way to apply an insect repellent is to apply it on your own hands first and then apply it on your kid, as it helps in spreading the repellent evenly.
  • Too much of DEET usage is toxic, hence harmful.
  • It is always advisable to read the instructions on the insect repellent or spray container to understand the directions of use.

[ Read: Psoriasis In Children ]

Thus, use the right insect repellent with Deet for kids and keep the dangerous disease causing insects and bugs away from your kid.

Let other mothers know your experience and safety tips that you have regarding using insect repellents for kids. Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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