Local doctors create Zika prevention kit, warn of scenarios that attract mosquitos


Local doctors with urgent care provider American Family Care have created a recommended “Zika prevention kit” in light of four people in Florida having recently been diagnosed with the virus.

To assemble your own kit, the doctors recommend keeping the following protective items on hand:

Bug Spray: Doctors recommend using an EPA registered insect repellent with DEET, picaridin or oil of eucalyptus.

Clothing protection
: Consumer Reports found “treating” your clothing is more effective than buying mosquito repellent clothing. Just spray clothing with permethrin that kills mosquitoes on contact with no harmful side effects, treating shirts, pants and socks at least 24 hours before wearing outdoors. Permethrin is a medicine and chemical used as an insect repellent and it is sold at local drug stores.

Yellow “bug light": A yellow outdoor bulb does not repel bugs, but the American Mosquito Control Association says it will not attract them like some other incandescent lights.    

Disinfectant wipes:
Keep a package of wet, disinfectant wipes handy for sweat while hiking, exercising or doing yardwork. The body produces lactic acid during exercise and mosquitoes are attracted to it. Cleaning skin off before reapplying bug spray will help repel bugs.

According to physicians with American Family Care, these four scenarios can also attract mosquitos:

Pregnancy: A study published in the British Medical Journal found women who are pregnant exhale more carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes.

Perspiration: The body produces lactic acid anytime it sweats, which attracts mosquitos. Those who spend a lot of time outdoors can reduce lactic acid by washing with soap and thoroughly drying their skin after exercising. 

Type O blood: A study in the Journal of Medical Entomology found people with type O blood were 83% more likely to get bitten by a mosquito. People with Type A were at the lowest risk.

Alcohol: Research published by the Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association suggests alcohol may raise the average body temperature a little, and that change in temperature may attract mosquitos.