Scotland is home to some incredibly beautiful views and wildlife. Unfortunately, 25% of Scotland’s land area also provides the perfect territory for insects, with there being as many as 180,750 trillion midges spread across the country during Summer.
As such it should come as no surprise that Edinburgh also comes under attack from these pests. If you are looking to prevent insect bites this summer, we are here to help: we have compiled 5 ways in which you can effectively prevent insect bites in Edinburgh.
Tip 1: Use Insect Repellent
There is a huge variety of insect repellents available within our pharmacy. A number of sources, such as Mountain Warehouse, suggest that the most successful repellents will include one (or more) of the following three ingredients: DEET, IR3535 and saltidin or citriodiol).
A quick breakdown of how these ingredients work is as follows:
This is a powerful substance, generally considered to be the most effective broad spectrum insect repellent available. DEET provides effective protection against insects such as mosquitoes. Spiders, ants, bees, and wasps are the only exceptions.
This repellent is applied during the warmer months, and can prevent bites and stings from mosquitoes, ticks, and other insects.
Saltidin (also known as Icaridin)
This is a more clothing-friendly alternative to DEET, and it also feels more comfortable on the skin due to it being less oily.
Citriodiol (Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus)
As an insect repellent, this is the third and final active component that has been approved for use by the GB Biocidal Products Regulation. Its primary advantage is that, despite the fact that it is a powerful repellent, it is an all-natural product that acts as a good substitute for DEET.
Tip 2: Install Repellent Bands, Candles and Plug-ins
Plug-in insect repellents, candles, and wristbands are all available however, according to Mountain Warehouse, they provide significantly less protection against biting insects than insecticides.
The usage of insect repellent bands can be effective in low-risk settings, and they are especially useful if you want to avoid using repellent sprays on your skin. This could be relevant in cases such as having young children. They should never be used purely for the purpose of protecting against bites, and they should never be used in high-risk regions.
Candles and plug-ins function by dispersing a mild Citronella aroma or permethrin vapour into the room. This works to either deter or kill insects as the scent is released. As a backup measure, these products are useful to have on hand. However, they will never be able to give the same level of protection as a repellent that is applied directly to the skin, or a mosquito net that has been treated. They will also have varying degrees of effectiveness, depending on the size of the space and the amount of insects present.
Tip 3: Avoid wearing perfume
Strong smells make you easily identifiable to any insect in Edinburgh. Therefore the use of perfume, aftershaves and deodorants can draw insects to you. If you would still like to to wear a deodorant spray, an odourless anti-perspirant would be the most advisable option.
Tip 4: Consider your surroundings carefully
According to the NHS, you should avoid lingering or camping near a body of water. This is because mosquitoes and horseflies are commonly found in these areas. You should also be mindful of flowering plants, compost or rubbish, stagnant water and places where food is served outdoors.
In addition, you should make sure to wear shoes when outdoors, as well as covering any exposed skin with long sleeves and trousers. This is especially true at a time of day when insects are particularly active, such as sunrise or sunset.
Tip 5: Use alternative products
In comparison to many other repellents, there are affordable alternatives such as Avon’s Skin So Soft dry oil spray. This spray is said to be surprisingly effective at deterring mosquitoes and midges (unlike many other repellents). The spray was found by the Royal Marines in 2005, when they were stationed near the west coast of Scotland. They were often assaulted by midges until they tested the spray, according to The Scotsman.A simple everyday product such as this can help you save the hassle of preventing insect bites in and amongst your busy schedule.
If you are looking to prevent insect bites in Edinburgh, we are here to help:
Contact or visit us for all of your insect repellent needs!