Advertisement

Can insect bites be prevented?

There are numerous products on the market to attempt to minimize bug bites by repelling insects. The most common of these is insect repellent. This can be a lotion or spray used on skin and clothing to keep bugs away. Certain lights and candles may also be used. However, it is unlikely that you will be able to prevent all cases of insect bites.

It’s important to know how to protect yourself from bug bites. Here are four recommendations for general protective measures:
  • Be aware of the peak time and peak areas for exposure. The peak time for mosquitoes is from dusk to dawn, and their peak areas for exposure are standing water. Heavily wooded areas are peak exposure areas for ticks.
  • Wear protective clothing, such as light-colored long sleeve shirts, tucked into pants that are tucked into socks or boots.
  • Check for ticks. Once you leave a wooded area, look carefully over your clothing; when you get home, undress and check again.
  • Use insecticides or repellents. DEET is the gold standard repellent ingredient and can be applied to clothes or directly to the skin.
The best care for once you have been bitten is to avoid scratching, as that's usually  the cause of the infection. See your doctor when in doubt about any bite.
 

Continue Learning about Insect Bites

The Do’s and Don’ts of Avoiding the Fire Ant
The Do’s and Don’ts of Avoiding the Fire Ant
In the 2015 movie Ant-Man, Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) develops an armored suit that can shrink someone to the size of an ant and give that tiny cr...
Read More
Which diseases are spread by mosquitoes?
Univ. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family MedicineUniv. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family Medicine
There are multiple diseases spread by mosquitoes. Some of the more well-known diseases are malaria, ...
More Answers
Insect Bites and Stings: How to Prevent and When to Worry
Insect Bites and Stings: How to Prevent and When to WorryInsect Bites and Stings: How to Prevent and When to WorryInsect Bites and Stings: How to Prevent and When to WorryInsect Bites and Stings: How to Prevent and When to Worry
Learn about what you can do to protect yourself from different types of insect bites and stings -- and get quick tips on to do you’re bitten.
Start Slideshow
How Can I Protect Myself From Mosquitoes?
How Can I Protect Myself From Mosquitoes?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.