Preventing Mosquitoes in the Philippines
Preventing Mosquitoes in the Philippines can be a real problem, made worse by the fact they seem to have a taste for British blood.
Mosquitoes transmit many infectious diseases to people, the most common of these in the Philippines is Dengue fever.
Other infectious diseases that are spread by Mosquitoes in the Philippines are Japanese encephalitis virus, Malaria, Chikungunya and Filariasis, depending on the province you are in.
Some mosquitoes cause very severe itching which if you are like me drives you crazy, some also cause swelling that can last for weeks.
So how do you stop mosquitoes biting
The main way in the Philippines is Off Lotion which is available in almost all shops even Sari Saris.
However, Off Lotion is not very good at stopping them if you miss even a half-inch of skin the mosquitoes will find it, it also has to be reapplied every few hours and contains DEET which is toxic and can be a health risk if used long term.
What are the alternatives
After trying many things I have found the best thing is Tea Tree Oil. In the house, I put 3 drops in a humidifier and it seems to stop mosquitoes coming into the house and the ones that are already in the house don’t seem to bite when the smell of Tea Tree Oil is in the air.
Some people do not like the smell of Tea Tree Oil, to get around this problem you can add a few drops of another essential oil to mask the smell of the Tea Tree Oil.
When outside you can rub a few drops of Tea Tree Oil on your skin to stop them biting if you have sensitive skin you might want to mix it with a carrier oil to weaken it.
Another way to stop mosquitoes is a Citronella oil lamp, which are available in many hardware shops in the malls.
Citronella oil is only meant to be a repellent, but after lighting one in the kitchen I discovered the mosquitoes were dying. This could be something they mixed with the oil causing this.
The problem with the Citronella oil lambs they sell is they are made of thin plastic which I would think is not very safe.
How to treat Mosquito bites
After many years experimenting with many products I find the best treatment is to rub a drop of Tea Tree Oil on them, it stops the itching and reduces the swelling.
If you can not get Tea Tree Oil the next best seems to be Betadine, I discovered this by accident when I could find nothing else in the house to stop the itching so gave Betadine a try. Betadine quickly reduces the itching and swelling.
The Filipinos seem to mainly use Efficascent oil for mosquito bites and almost everything else, it seems like it is a cure-all for them. However, I find when first applied it makes the bite itch more and found I was unable to resist the urge to scratch, which in turn makes it worse.
If the bite swells you may also take antihistamine tablets, but remember if you go for the cheap ones they will make you drowsy so do not drive after taking them.
Where can you buy Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil is not easy to find in the Philippines and it is often poor quality.
Human Heart Nature sell top-quality Tea Tree Oil, even better quality than you get in the UK, you can order online and delivery is cheap and fast. I believe on their site it says 2 to 3 days delivery, but every time I have ordered from them it arrives the next day.
Questions and Answers.
Q: When is the mosquito season in the Philippines?
A: Mosquito season in the Philippines is all year round, you do tend to get more in the rainy season but there is never a time of year when there are no mosquitos.
Q: What mosquito-borne diseases are in the Philippines?
A: The main mosquito-borne diseases are in the Philippines are Dengue, Chikungunya, Japanese Encephalitis, Malaria and Filariasis however most are not nationwide so check the area you are travelling to and take the precautions needed for that area.