DEET - Mosquito help please

Travel Forums Asia DEET - Mosquito help please

1. Posted by Beckiboo (Respected Member 134 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi everyone

I'm going to India, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia in November for 6 months. I have one major problem though: Mosquitos!!!
I think I must be allergic to them as even when bitten in the UK the bites swell up, quite often to the size of tennis balls. I've tries all normal UK repellents but nothings seems to keep the b@stards away! I've had to go to the doctors in the past to get special creams because the bites are so severe!
I'm really worried when I go travelling I am going to get bitten to threads and just turn into one big mosquito bite!

I guess I must have a certain type of skin/blood that attracts them, but since I react so severely to them I really want to protect myself beforehand to give me at least a starting chance. I've heard that DEET is the thing to buy, where can I get this in the UK?

Any advice please?

[ Edit: Edited at Sep 7, 2006 9:46 AM by Beckiboo ]

2. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hello Beckiboo
I think u should be able to buy that, in Boots pharmacy. There are many in every UK city and at least one in smaller towns.
Since the bites effect u so much, maybe it would be a good idea, to impregnate your mosquito net and clothes, with permethrin. This should also be available at Boots.
If these are not available, at Boots, then try a camping store.
Also, use mosquito repellant,during the day. There are mosquitos, which live in rooms. They can bite, during the day.

3. Posted by Purdy (Travel Guru 3546 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

I use a brand called JUNGLE FORMULA and l thinkg it contains Deet - l dont think Deet is a product in itself you are just recommended to buy a mozzie repellant containing Deet. Now correct me if lm wrong! Have you tried the MASTA website (minding your health abroad!) look here .

They have a shop and you can buy insect repellent there!


4. Posted by allthai (Full Member 88 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Becki,

Believe it or not AVON Skin So Soft is an excellent insect repellent. My wife and I have been using it when camping or hiking in the jungles and forests here in Thailand for years and it works great, smells good too.

Randy and Ning

5. Posted by Taffski (Travel Guru 182 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Becki,
DEET is basically a chemical called N-diethyl-m-toluamide.

It doesn't kill anything, but rather disguises your "smell" which attracts the little buggers.

In the case of mosquitoes, the primary attractants that have been identified are CO2 and lactic acid. The best substance yet found to block mosquitoes' powers of detection is DEET, and while a few repellents are equal over a short term, nothing even comes close in terms of residual repellency.

The Amount of DEET in a product essentially breaks down to how long the it lasts. i.e. 10% DEET will last an hour or two, while 100% (available from travel stores etc. in spray form) will last 12 hours or so!

The stuff does make your lips go numb if you get it on them and it's pretty strong smelling stuff too, so I'd suggest you get 2 types. a 30% one for the day (as to not knock out your travel companions) and a 100% DEET spray for night time (unless you get a mossie net impregnated with Permethrin (as suggested earlier) You can also get suntan lotions with DEET in (which kills 2 birds with one stone!)

However, Preventing the little buggers getting near you in the first place is better than covering yourself with chemicals.
Get yourself a (Thin) long sleeved shirt and pyjama bottoms etc. for night time and sleep under your mossie net.
Use your DEET during the day and cover only the parts of your body that are exposed (remember your sweaty bits as these give off more CO2 than anywhere else... I always get bitten on the bottom of my feet as I'm wearing sandals and forget to spray there!!!)

Hope this helps


6. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Wow Taffski
I did not know that!

7. Posted by loubylou (Respected Member 664 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Beckiboo

I am exactly the same as you as to how severly allergic I am to insect's no fun!

I find that Boots' own insect repellant gel is the best (as I am allergic to a lot of skin creams and other repellants too!). It is in a grey bottle, it has 50% DEET and gives your skin a nice sheen, so you can see when the stuff is coming off. It's meant to last 8 hours.

If you are unlucky enough to get bitten through this (it has only happened to me a couple of times), make sure you taken an anti-histamine tablet straight away, benadryl is good (non-drowsy) and put some anti-histamine cream on it straight away. This will minimise the swelling! the good thing is that you can also buy all this stuff in Boots in Thailand too!