Health Advice



Ask the Pediatrician: Which insect repellent is best for children?

By Dr. Sophie J. Balk, American Academy of Pediatrics on

Published in Health & Fitness

Here are several repellent tips:

— Choose products in the form of sticks, lotions or unpressurized sprays.

— Read the label and follow all directions and precautions.

— Only apply insect repellents on the outside of your child's clothing and on exposed skin — not under clothing.

— Use just enough repellent to cover your child's clothing and exposed skin. Using more doesn't make the repellent more effective. Repellents such as DEET should only be applied once a day.

— Use spray repellents in open areas to avoid breathing them in.


— Help apply insect repellent on young children. Supervise older children when using these products.

— Wash your children's skin with soap and water to remove any repellent when they return indoors and wash their clothing before they wear it again.

— Keep repellents out of young children's reach to reduce the risk of unintentional swallowing.

— Avoid sprays in pressurized containers to avoid inhaling the product or getting it into eyes.


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