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pdomansky 05-08-2017 12:33 PM

Mosquito/Bug bites- Prevention and treatment
Hello everyone,

First sorry for the lenghy post, I want to give all the information so I can get an informed response.

My family are avid hikers and backpackers and was looking for some insight with regard to bug protection/prevention.

Both my wife and my 11 year old son have a very bad allergic reaction to mosquito bites. It will swell up very quickly and get rings around it.
We've gone to the doctor, who referred us to an allergist. An allergist tested and confirmed it is known as something called "Skeeter Syndrome".
Luckily, we've come to learn it is not fatal if left untreated but more uncomfortable than anything.

We've been given a prescription steroid treatment to isolate the bite and prevent it from swelling, but I was looking at options to prevent the bites from happening in the first place.

Couple things I've read.

1. DEET works, but it's affects are short term, and I know it is not good for younger people (or anyone really).

2. We used Piactive ( which seems to work well and has 0% Deet.

As an alternative to skin based prevention I was inquiring about:

1. Permethrin treated clothing
a. How well does it work, and is it safe to use on youth clothing (My son is 11, but is about the size of a 13 year old boy (125lbs).

2. Bug hats/suits - How well do they work?

I really appreciate any advice or other things you can think of that can prevent bug bites.



alpalmer 05-08-2017 05:58 PM

I've used permethrin before with excellent results. You definitely will get varied opinions about its safety. From the information I have looked at, it is completely safe when used correctly, that is allowing it to dry completely when applied to clothing or other materials before the need. Don't apply it to clothing while wearing it, don't spray it on the skin.

I also have an "Original Bug Shirt" from this company . It is also very effective in preventing mosquitos, sand flies, and black flies from biting. They have a child version. The cloth is a high density fabric that inhibits penetration. Their items are not cheap but it reduces use of repellents.

Blucruisin 07-28-2017 01:36 PM

We have some shirts treated with permethrin in the US that have worked great. Only lasts for a certain number of washes (don't remember how many) but we bought some Sawyer permethrin at REI so we could re-treat when needed.

We also have the netted bug shirts/hats that we wear. Hate hiking in them and they obviously are useless where your pack and/or pack straps are as there is no distance between the net and your skin. But at least you can keep the bugs out of your face and mouth as well as off your neck when wearing them.

We picked up at REI the 98% DEET Jungle Juice when the conditions are really, really bad. This stuff has been banned in Canada but not in the US so far. It's really bad for you so we only use it when we are being driven crazy with the bugs, especially if we're up north. Definitely cant's get anything comparable in Canada.

5thhorseman 07-28-2017 02:18 PM

Ever thought of using one of these when you do get a bite?

KARVITK 07-29-2017 03:29 PM


Originally Posted by 5thhorseman (Post 802170)
Ever thought of using one of these when you do get a bite?

Now that is interesting useful fact;

perhaps that why a rather hot shower or bath helps somewhat. Had a few dozen bites from the Zoa hike a few weeks back.


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