For many families, bug spray is a common household item. But what exactly is in your bug spray? Are the ingredients safe? Are some ingredients toxic? Which ingredients should I avoid for my kids? What are the long-term effects of using bug spray?
These are great questions you should investigate before spraying your kids with insect repellent. Recent research reveals that there are in fact many potentially harmful chemicals in these household bug sprays.
Most of us have heard of the chemical DEET, and its potentially harmful effects. But have you heard of pyrethroid insecticides? Insecticide is a chemical that kills bugs. Pyrethroid insecticides are a chemical class of active ingredients found in a variety of mosquito repellents, household sprays, aerosol bombs, pet shampoos, and lice treatments. In a study led by University of California, they found that two-thirds of adults, children, and homes tested positive for pyrethroids.1
Children are more prone to exposure because of their closer proximity to the ground and hand-to-mouth contact. The insecticide can be absorbed through the digestive system, or absorbed through the skin.
Are these pyrethroid insecticides harmful?
Recent research by Inserm, in association with the Laboratory for Developmental and Educational Psychology, discovered new evidence of neurotoxicity (cause of brain damage) in humans caused by exposure to pyrethroid insecticides. In particular, the research correlates an increase in a child’s urinary levels of two certain pyethroid metabolites (3 PBA and cis-DBCA) with a significant decrease in their cognitive performance, particularly verbal communication and working memory.2
It is scary to consider the possible, negative long-term effects of an ingredient in so many household products, including bug spray. Although this is not a definite conclusion, it does place caution on the use of such products. We at Mosquitno believe that there are most certainly situations that require highly potent, chemically-derived insect repellents in order to avoid even more harmful mosquito-born illnesses. However, our goal when creating Mosquitno Bands and Spotz was to provide parents and families a non-toxic, alternative solution to everyday mosquito exposure. Mosquitno Bands and Spotz are infused with all-natural Citronella oil that naturally repels mosquitoes and other pesky bugs.
- “Pyrethroid Insecticides Increasing in People, Homes.” — Environmental Health News. N.p., 06 Feb. 2014. Web. 25 June 2015.
- “Impact of insecticides on the cognitive development of 6-year-old children.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 June 2015. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/06/150610111127.htm