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Thread: New Insect repellents recommended by CDC

  1. #1
    Moderator David Metsky's Avatar
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    New Insect repellents recommended by CDC

    http://story.news.yahoo.com/s/ap/200...e_me/west_nile

    Looks like the gov't agencies have decided that picaridin or the oil of lemon eucalyptus are safe and effective. Options for those who are uncomfortable with DEET.

    It's getting to be that time again.

    -dave-

  2. #2
    Senior Member spencer's Avatar
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    lemon eucalyptus is the main act on amateur night.

    1) you can reapply it very frequently and get minimal benefit (as opposed to almost none if you apply it once)

    2) you can use deet and be happy (for now anyway)

    3) you can adopt "mind over matter"

    but I hope everyone doesn't run out and spend their money on the lemon eucalyptus stuff thinking it'll be the cure...

    do a search for the landmark research that came out in New England Journal of Medicine in 2001 or 2002. I think they found after about 28% DEET concentration you get severely diminishing returns.

    Thanks for the intereting article Dave. But after lots of trial and error, I found lemon eucalyptus to be a waste of time.

    spencer

  3. #3
    Senior Member Tom Rankin's Avatar
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    Give me DEET or give me DEATH! (By flies, mosquitos, etc., etc. !!)
    Tom Rankin
    Web Master - NY Forest Fire Lookout Association
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  4. #4
    Senior Member beverly's Avatar
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    picaridin

    Does anybody have experience with picaridin? The information I've seen says that it's protection is comparable to DEET. It's been used with success in Europe, Asia and Australia and was recently approved for use in the US. There is at least one product that has it - Cutter Advanced Repellent.
    DEET is just too stinky.

  5. #5
    Senior Member adamiata's Avatar
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    What exactly is the hangup with DEET? Does it cause cancer or something like that?

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    Senior Member Artex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamiata
    What exactly is the hangup with DEET? Does it cause cancer or something like that?
    It melts plastic. No joke. That stuff was forged by Lucifer himself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Artex
    It melts plastic. No joke.
    I usually keep a small bottle with me if it becomes absolutely imperative to use it, wrapped in a seperate ziploc. One day the little thing sprung a little leak, unbeknownst to me, and I had the bag on my nightstand. It melted through the ziploc and burned through the finish on the nightstand, leaving an impression of the bottle and the plastic. Now, I inspect the bottle before every trip to make sure it isn't about to dissolve my fork/tent/sleeping bag/etc.

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    Member proszach's Avatar
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    is lemon eucalyptus the stuff found in naturalpel?? cause if it is, that stuff doesn't keep away jack. when i take campers hiking at camp, we bring naturapel for the kiddies, and bens 100 for the counselors...cause we don't care about our health
    "Goin' where the wind don't blow so strange,
    maybe off on some high cold mountain chain..." GD

  9. #9
    Senior Member Umsaskis's Avatar
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    When I was a kid, I used Ben's 100 (95% DEET). Black flies in northern Maine, you know. Yup, it melts plastic alright. I always got black all over my hands from the lawn mower handle when I used the stuff.

    Then I decided that I'd learn to deal with the bugs. I hardly ever use bug spray anymore. And that includes many long mornings sitting absolutely still in bug-infested marshes in the height of black fly season in northern Maine, counting wading birds. The key is to completely enclose yourself to keep them out. Even then they crawl in between the jacket and bugnet, under the elastic wristband of your jacket, and it sounds like a downpour from them hitting the top of your bugnet. Camping in the evenings involves lifting up the bugnet to get the fork to my mouth for each bite of supper. Swimming in the stream to get the grime of the day's work off - run to the stream as fast as you can and get completely submerged, then run back to the tent as fast as you can. Hiking - walk really fast and don't stop unless it's a windy spot. But, proof that life can be lived without bug spray in one of the worst bug places in the northeastern US.

    My dad still uses Ben's 100. But he's still alive....
    In the mountains, God has built a monument to Himself.

  10. #10
    Senior Member rhihn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by proszach
    is lemon eucalyptus the stuff found in naturalpel?? cause if it is, that stuff doesn't keep away jack. when i take campers hiking at camp, we bring naturapel for the kiddies, and bens 100 for the counselors...cause we don't care about our health
    Naturepel contains citronella oil, about 10% or so, I believe. I don't think it's good for much except maybe in one's back yard (depending upon where your back yard is, of course). Ditto the citronella candles. In the past we have used pure oil of citronella, with mixed results, and you do have to reapply it often. You'll also leave a trail of lemony citronella odor as you hike! I have heard that citronella can be toxic to birds, but I'm not sure under what conditions. IMO, DEET is the most effective, and even that doesn't always work well. As with any chemical, there are going to be side effects, and the ability of DEET to melt some plastics has been noted. I don't slather it all over myself, and I wouldn't use it on my children, as I've heard they are more apt to have nerve damage from it. I've also heard that it can cause problems with some medications and sunblock products. But maybe someone has and can post more accurate objective info than mine on DEET, citronella, eucalyptus, etc., so we'll know more than hearsay.
    Dick

  11. #11
    Senior Member TCD's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by adamiata
    What exactly is the hangup with DEET? Does it cause cancer or something like that?

    ____________
    See the "Black Flies" thread in this same forum. in that thread DougPaul posted good information regarding the safety of DEET. In short, it's safe.

    But it has two strikes against it in the lay press: 1. It has a "chemical" name; 2. It works. Both these things will draw the hysterical crowd (think "The Alar scare.").

    I'm sure DEET does have neural effects. When accidentally applied to sensitive tissue, the effects of DEET are very much like the effects of the juice of a "hot" pepper (it numbs the lips, it burns the eyes, etc.). And certainly keep it off your colorful plastic items. But again the research shows, that when used properly and in moderation, it's safe.

    TCD

  12. #12
    Senior Member sapblatt's Avatar
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    Deet

    "So we came up the hill...not one living mosquito. I love the smell of DEET in the morning. It smells like victory."

    Colonel Kilgore
    - Mike

    How bad can it be?
    Bobby

  13. #13
    Tramper Al
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umsaskis
    The key is to completely enclose yourself to keep them out. Even then they crawl in between the jacket and bugnet, under the elastic wristband of your jacket, and it sounds like a downpour from them hitting the top of your bugnet.
    That sounds good, but I really haven't found a way to keep covered up like this when I am trying to hike uphill with a good sized pack in summer. At some point, termperature management becomes a major issue, and in peak black fly season in Maine, that's where the DEET comes in.

    We shouldn't be surprised that DEET in high concentration 'melts' plastic, as it is an organic solvent, yes? I'd like to make the switch from 95% DEET to 28% DEET, but I fear I may just end up reapplying myself 3.4X as often (or as generously). On a bad bug day, it's still not enough for me.

    Any good folklore preventive measures out there? Garlic or Vitamin E supplements? I might be inclined try something that was unlikely to harm me and thoroughly unproven in its effectiveness. And I love garlic.
    Last edited by Tramper Al; 04-29-2005 at 09:13 AM.

  14. #14
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    people taste different

    One thing I have noticed is that when hiking with one or more partners, someone may be immune to the bug attacks. I am guessing that something the person is eating is giving them the immunity.

    Mike

  15. #15
    Senior Member rhihn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tramper Al
    That sounds good, but I really haven't found a way to keep covered up like this when I am trying to hike uphill with a good sized pack in summer. At some point, termperature management becomes a major issue, and in peak black fly season in Maine, that's where the DEET comes in.

    Any good folklore preventive measures out there? Garlic or Vitamin E supplements. I might be inclined try something that was unlikely to harm me and thoroughly unproven in it's effectiveness. And I love garlic.
    I've seen bug "shirts" (essentially shirts made of netting), but I don't know how well they work. For camp, I have a bug jacket that works quite well, but it's too hot to hike in. I've tried the garlic thing with no success. I think you have to ingest a lot of it to work, maybe the pill form? I'm just speculating here. I haven't heard of vitamin E for this purpose, but I have heard of one of the vitamin B's as a remedy. I forget which one, or how much to take. I seem to recall you have to load up on it before a hike. Again, I have no idea how effective these are. I'm sure others will comment. for now, I'll stick to DEET.
    Dick

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