Citronella and Other Mosquito Myths

Between all the rain that we’ve gotten over the past month and the rising heat as summer approaches, Mother Nature has created the perfect environment for Arkansas’ unofficial state bird— the mosquito— to thrive. There are a lot of misconceptions about mosquito prevention that float around this time of year, so as your bug expert, we’re here to set the record straight and help you separate fact from fiction.

Citronella Candles Always Work — FICTION

Citronella candles will protect against mosquitoes, but not in the way you think. Scientists suggest that, unless you’re in an environment with little to no air movement, the only thing actually protected by the citronella scent, is the candle itself.

Being Pregnant Makes You a Mosquito Magnet — FACT

We apologize to the moms-to-be out there, but this is, in fact, true. Pregnant women release more carbon dioxide and heat, making them the prime target for mosquitoes.

Eating Certain Foods Will Keep Mosquitoes Away — FICTION

We certainly wish that carrying a banana in our shirt pocket or overdosing on garlic would deter these pests, but this idea is unfortunately a major myth. In reality, mosquitoes are attracted to the natural smell of human skin. While your dinner affects that odor, there are up to 400 more chemical compounds that play into the matter, so a diet change isn’t enough to deter these biting insects.

Your Wardrobe Can Camouflage You from Mosquitoes — MOSTLY FACT

This is both true and false. Although mosquitoes aren’t the fashion police, they are naturally more attracted to darker colors, particularly navy blue. Wearing light colors won’t deter them 100%, but it might mean fewer!

Bug Spray Is a Waste of Time — FICTION

We’re thankful to say this is a myth. Mosquito repellent is the most effective way to avoid bites, but only those containing ingredients recommended by the CDC. Those ingredients are DEET (best for prolonged exposure), Picaridin (often referred to as KBR 3023, Bayrepel, and icaridin), the oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or p-menthane-diol (PMD) and IR3535.

All in all, mosquitoes are annoying, and no amount of old wives’ tales will get rid of all of them. We’re excited to tell you that we have another option— our Mosquito Control Program, proven to significantly reduce the mosquito popular around your home. To sign up for your initial treatment, click here.

 

 

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