Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Bug Off!

Shayna Friedman

If you’re tired of endless scratching, but confused about the best insect repellent for you and your family — here’s what you need to know.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

I have two 12-year-old nieces, twins actually, who strongly believe in being prepared. They’re quick to remind their older sisters to pack Dramamine for long bus rides. And since they have fair skin, they wouldn’t think of leaving the house without sun hats. “Summer’s around the corner. What do you do about mosquitoes?” I asked them in a recent conversation. “We don’t eat sugar in the summer,” the first begins. “That way we don’t have sweet blood!” the second one interjects, finishing her sister’s sentence. “And we won’t leave the house without Off!” “Which Off! do you buy?” I ask. “With so many different types, how do you choose?” “Well, we pick the bottle with the nicest package,” the older one says. The younger sagely agrees. We may laugh, but how many mature, responsible adults pick their bug protection the same way? With all the confusing information in the news, online, and even on package labels, it’s hard to make an informed choice. Fear of illnesses like Lyme disease and West Nile virus contends with worries over the purported negative side effects of insect repellents. Much of a consumer’s knowledge comes from information on a package; if 5 percent DEET is good, 100 percent must be better, right? Maybe “all-natural” repellents with claims like “repels mosquitoes for hours” and “proven effective,” are the safer choice — but are they too good to be true? 

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Evolution vs. Revolution
Shoshana Friedman I call it the “what happened to my magazine?” response
Up, Up, and Away
Rabbi Moshe Grylak What a fraught subject Eretz Yisrael is, to this day
Where Do You Come From?
Yonoson Rosenblum Could they be IDF officers with no Jewish knowledge?
Heaven Help Us
Eytan Kobre Writing about anti-Semitism should rouse, not soothe
Work/Life Solutions with Chedva Kleinhandler
Moe Mernick “Failures are our compass to success”
An Un-Scientific Survey
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Are Jerusalemites unfriendly? Not necessarily
Out of Anger
Jacob L. Freedman How Angry Lawyer was finally able to calm down
5 Things You Didn’t Know about…Yitzy Bald
Riki Goldstein He composed his first melody at eight years old
When the Floodgates of Song Open, You’re Never Too Old
Riki Goldstein Chazzan Pinchas Wolf was unknown until three years ago
Who Helped Advance These Popular Entertainers?
Riki Goldstein Unsung deeds that boosted performers into the limelight
Your Task? Ask
Faigy Peritzman A tangible legacy I want to pass on to my children
Are You There?
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Emotional withdrawal makes others feel lonely, abandoned
A Peace of a Whole
Rebbetzin Debbie Greenblatt Love shalom more than you love being right
Seminary Applications
Rabbi Zecharya Greenwald, as told to Ariella Schiller It’s just as hard for seminaries to reject you