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We are a community group for mothers, currently in the Orillia to Gravenhurst, Ontario area, we focus on food, nutrition and health for our family. We draw on expert knowledge such as naturopaths, but best of all we learn and share knowledge from fellow mothers. Even if you have never cooked before we can help you get started. We want to encourage moms to cook and learn the importance of what they put on the table. We are REALISTIC and STRIVE to make a healthy lifestyle accessible to everyone, through education. Membership is FREE so sign up to follow us today! We work together to share knowledge of everything from recipes, nutrition, to how to plan ahead. We offer something for every lifestyle, from just the basics of cooking, spaghetti and pizza, to people looking to learn something new about nutrition, organics or even raw cooking. Never cooked before, let us help you get started, we offer some basic cooking lessons from a mom, to help get you started and then this group will help keep you going for a lifetime of providing healthy and nutritious meals for your family. We offer: Workshops, share recipes, and fun get togethers.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Always something to learn in Motherhood....mosquito repellants

Something I have learned as a first time mom is that I like motherhood, for the same reason I like business, you can always learn something new. I find myself googling something new everyday, for both motherhood and business.
I went for another hike yesterday with Mateo and my neighbour and her two kids, (In July you can read about how to and tips to hiking with your baby on http://www.everythingmom.com/.) but I came home googling about natural methods of mosquito repellents for babies and treating mosquito bits on babies. This hike was bugger than usual because it was after a rainfall (live and learn I guess). 

This is also why I love all these mom bloggers, parenting websites and parenting magazines to help in this constant learning process of motherhood. So I thought I would share what I found on mosquito repellents for children, and some of it was a little hard to hear, as of course they always say it is up to you, as a parent to decide to what is wrong and right for your child (so DEET or no DEET).

First this study http://www.cfpc.ca/cfp/2003/Aug/vol49-aug-critical-2.asp. Now I tried to find the specific brands that they said where more effective, as they said to go to www.healthyontario.com, but I could not find the information. This study still doesn't leave me completely secure with a DEET choice, as hey we still have trans fats and hormone injected meats on the market and they say everything in moderation is ok too. So really I liked to be informed but I also take things with a grain a of salt.

If you do decide on DEET because maybe you live in an area that is highly infested with mosquitoes (like mine), then make sure you pick the right concentrations for your child's age. They list the recommended amounts in the study above. The Canadian Pediatric Society says "Children between the ages of 2 and 12 should use repellent with no more than 10 per cent DEET." Something else that was news to me was that the Canadian Pediatric Society says "Products containing citronella and lavender oil are not considered safe for use".

I did find a lot of helpful tips, or warnings, some that I already knew and some that I didn't really think of when applying DEET repellents:
  • read the entire label before applying and repellents
  • always apply the repellent for your child
  • lightly apply the product and do not apply on irritated, sunburned skin, open wounds or cuts
  • sunscreen should be applied first before a repellent
  • do not put repellent under clothing
  • avoid eyes, mouth, hands and face
  • do not breathe it in and apply in a well ventilated area away from food
  • do not use the product for too long or too much so don't apply more than three times a day (per the Canadian Pediatric society) and wash off after they come indoors.
One tip I found that I really like is to put the repellent on babies' clothes instead of the skin, although DEET has been seen to eat away at your clothes.

On a funnier note, I read at the zoo that one of the types of monkeys, are said to actually grind up centipedes and rub it all over themselves to deter mosquitoes; interesting but I don't think I will be doing that any time soon.

My parents swear by rubbing bounce sheets on themselves and having some in your pockets, but I am still not completely convinced on that one.

Finally my opinion, I will use light weight, covering as much as possible clothing for my child, and leave the repellents to only very buggy days and only if I think it is completely necessary(but when he turns 2 years old I guess).  But I am also trying to find this repellent you clip on to yourself, that I saw on a commercial and see how effective it is, and I will also let my readers know how that goes. So I guess my quest for safe repellents for infants is something I am still looking for, but have learned a lot so far. Tomorrow I will write what I learned about helping the itch after your baby gets bitten.

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