Mosquitoes Vector for disease
Mosquitoes are pests not only for their itchy bites, but also for their ability to carry pathogens that can
be transmitted through their proboscis.
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Make sure to look below the skin to reveal the capillary
Prevent Mosquito Bites (CDC Guidelines)
Protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites
Use Insect Repellent
Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellentsexternal icon with
one of the active ingredients below. When used as directed, EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe
and effective, even for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
- Picaridin (known as KBR 3023 and icaridin outside the US)
- Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE)
- Para-menthane-diol (PMD)
Find the right insect repellent for you by using EPA’s search toolexternal
Tips for babies and children
- Dress your child in clothing that covers arms and legs.
- Cover strollers and baby carriers with mosquito netting.
- When using insect repellent on your child:
- Always follow label instructions.
- Do not use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or para-menthane-diol (PMD) on
children under 3 years old.
- Do not apply insect repellent to a child’s hands, eyes, mouth, cuts, or irritated skin.
- Adults: Spray insect repellent onto your hands and then apply to a child’s face.
Tips for Everyone
- Always follow the product label instructions.
- Reapply insect repellent as directed.
- Do not spray repellent on the skin under clothing.
- If you are also using sunscreen, apply sunscreen first and insect repellent second.
Natural insect repellents (repellents not registered with EPA)
- We do not know the effectiveness of non-EPA registered insect repellents, including some natural
- To protect yourself against diseases spread by mosquitoes, CDC and EPA recommend using an
EPA-registered insect repellent.
- Choosing an EPA-registered repellent ensures the EPA has evaluated the product for effectiveness.
- Visit the EPA website to learn more.external
Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants
Treat clothing and gear
Take steps to control mosquitoes indoors and outdoors
- Use screens on windows and doors. Repair holes in screens to keep mosquitoes outdoors.
- Use air conditioning, if available.
- Stop mosquitoes from laying eggs in or near water.
- Once a week, empty and scrub, turn over, cover, or throw out items that hold water, such as
tires, buckets, planters, toys, pools, birdbaths, flowerpots, or trash containers.
- Check indoors and outdoors.
Prevent mosquito bites when traveling overseas
- Choose a hotel or lodging with air conditioning or screens on windows and doors.
- Sleep under a mosquito bed net if you are outside or in a room that does not have
- Buy a bed net at your local outdoor store or online before traveling
- Choose a WHOPES-approved bed net: compact, white, rectangular, with 156
holes per square inch, and long enough to tuck under the mattress.
- Permethrin-treated bed nets provide more protection than untreated nets.
- Do not wash bed nets or expose them to sunlight. This will break
down the insecticide more quickly.
- For more information on bed nets, visit CDC’s page on insecticide-treated
- For more information on traveling overseas, visit Travelers’
Mosquito Bite Prevention for the United States
How to Protect Against Mosquito Bites for Travelers
Mosquito Bites Can Make You Sick
Learn more about Zika with our fact sheets and posters.