Mosquitoes can sometimes carry diseases like malaria, Ross River virus and dengue fever, which can be transferred when bitten. While these cases are rare in New South Wales, the itch from their bite is enough to drive anyone crazy! If your home is a hotspot for mosquito activity, we’ve got a guide to making your property less appealing to the pests, as well as tips for treating that itchy feeling if you do get bitten.
Avoiding the bite
Time your outings
There’s no time of day when you’re 100 per cent safe from mosquitoes. However, to give yourself the best chance when it comes to preventing bites, consider avoiding dusk and dawn as this is when they’re most active.
Light and loose
Mosquitoes are attracted to darker clothing and if it’s tight enough they can even bite straight through the material. Wearing lighter, loose-fitting clothing will help you steer clear of those itchy bites.
Help rid your home
Mosquitoes breed in still water; whether it’s a pool, pond, rainwater tank or your pet’s drinking water. Keeping your pool chlorinated, ponds stocked with fish and a lid on your rainwater tank are just a few ways to help. Also, consider installing flywire screens in your home so you can let the fresh air in without getting any mozzy intruders.
From citronella candles to a range of spray-on rid options, there are a variety of products on the market that claim to be the best for scaring away mosquitoes. We suggest testing a few yourself, until you find one that works best for you.
Treating the bite
Whether it’s a bit of calamine lotion or some cortisone cream, there are a number of remedies out there for relieving that relentless itch. Talk to your local chemist and they will able to point you in the right direction.
While you will have the urge to scratch, try to resist and apply some ice. This will not only soothe your skin, but can also help reduce swelling.
Heat a spoon under a tap until it’s as hot as you can bare (be very careful not to burn your skin). Place the spoon against your bite for a couple of minutes. The heat breaks down the protein left in your skin and will relieve the itch.
If you have had an allergic reaction to a mosquito bite or are showing symptoms of a mosquito-borne disease, seek medical help immediately.