Break the Dengue Transmission with Indoor Mozzie Repellent Cream
Even as you stay at home for safety during the Circuit Breaker, you need to deal with yet another health concern brought by Dengue, one of the most prevalent mosquito-borne diseases. As the Dengue peak season approaches, you will have to proactively implement protective measures, especially if you live in dengue clusters or landed residential areas.
Residents now face a higher risk of Dengue transmission due to the virus’ shorter incubation period, as well as the accelerated breeding cycle of the Aedes mosquito. According to National Environment Agency (NEA), in the week ending 16 May 2020, there were 529 dengue cases reported, which is higher than the 300 to 400 weekly cases for the first four months of this year.
While this data is alarming, keep in mind that there are a lot of ways to avoid this dreaded disease. Aside from protecting yourself from the virus, you can contribute to putting an end to the vicious circle of Dengue transmission by practising preventive measures while inside your home.
The Need to Break the Dengue Chain of Transmission
It is a known fact that bites of infected female mosquitoes, primarily the Aedes aegypti mosquito, transmit the Dengue virus to humans. What’s worse, when an infected mosquito feeds on a Dengue-infected person, the virus replicates in the mosquito’s midgut. In about 8-12 days from the time the virus was ingested, the mosquito can transmit the virus to a new host.
On the other hand, human-to-mosquito transmission is also possible. When bitten by an uninfected mosquito, an infected person can transmit the Dengue virus to the mosquito. This transmission may occur up to 2 days before a person shows symptoms and up to 2 days after the Dengue fever has resolved. When the virus makes its way to its salivary glands, this mosquito can then infect human hosts.
Breaking this continuous cycle of Dengue transmission is the best way to prevent more and more people from acquiring the disease. One of the measures that can effectively stop this transmission chain is for people to make mosquito repellent application a habit.
Figure: The Dengue Chain of Transmission
Protect yourself and stop the transmission cycle by applying mosquito repellent
Aside from spraying insecticides and doing regular mozzie wipeouts inside homes, NEA highly recommends applying mosquito repellent daily even when you are staying indoors. Mosquitoes may breed even in your home, especially if you live in a dengue cluster.
More so, if there are people infected with Dengue in your area, there is a risk of having more infected mosquitoes that may carry the virus into different homes. Thus, NEA also recommends that even people who are suspected of having Dengue or those already infected with the Dengue virus should apply mosquito repellent regularly.
NEA highly recommends applying mosquito repellent daily even when you are staying indoors
DEET as the most effective ingredient in repelling mosquitoes
There are many types of mosquito repellent available in the market nowadays. From lotions and sprays to creams and impregnated repellent materials, you can choose from a wide array of options based on what’s convenient for you to use. You will also need to select a mosquito repellent according to its ingredients — DEET, Picardin, Eucalyptus, and Citronella.
With the many options to choose from, you might be confused on what to use. The key is to find which is most effective in terms of repelling mosquitoes. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, repellents that contain DEET (chemical name N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) offer the best protection against mosquito bites. In theory, DEET can interrupt the receptors in the mosquito’s antennae, which makes it hard for the insect to locate humans.
U.S. CDC – Repellents that contain DEET (chemical name N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) offer the best protection against mosquito bites
Despite the fact that DEET is most effective when it comes to repelling mosquitoes, some have the impression that DEET may be too harsh for them. However, a study conducted by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research states that DEET-based insect repellents are relatively safe when used as recommended. The study also suggests that a mosquito repellent containing 10% DEET can provide a longer period of protection than other repellents, based on a one-time application comparison.
Likewise, a laboratory evaluation conducted by Vector Control Research Unit of Universiti Sains Malaysia found out that a mosquito repellent with 10% DEET has 66% longer protective efficacy against mosquito landings compared to a citronella spray with 15% concentration.
Ceramoz® has 10% DEET and provides 66% longer protective efficacy against mosquito compared to a citronella spray with 15% concentration
NEA-approved mosquito repellent with moisturiser
A product approved by NEA as a general use insect repellent is Ceramoz® Mosquito Repellent Cream. Ceramoz is uniquely formulated with DEET, which is scientifically proven to repel mosquitoes up to 66% longer than citronella repellent.
Unlike other mosquito repellents, Ceramoz moisturises the skin as it repels mosquitoes. Suitable for all skin types, it contains ceramide-dominant 3:1:1 lipid ratio formulation, which is essential in maintaining the skin barrier function and retaining skin moisture.
Additionally, Ceramoz mosquito repellent is safe to be used on babies 2 months onwards and pregnant women. This hypoallergenic mosquito repellent contains only 10% DEET and is free of paraben, fragrance, and colourants.
Don’t let down your guard during the Circuit Breaker. The risk of Dengue transmission is high even when people are just staying inside their homes. As you remain indoors for safety, make sure to practice preventive measures like applying mosquito repellent. Making it part of your daily hygiene routine will protect not only you but also your loved ones and the people around you. It is a crucial step towards breaking the cycle of Dengue transmission.
DEET-based insect repellents: safety implications for children and pregnant and lactating women by Gideon Koren, Doreen Matsui, Benoit Bailey of Canadian Institutes for Health Research
Fight the Bite for Protection from Malaria Guidelines for DEET Insect Repellent Use by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Department of Health & Human Services – USA
Contact Dermatitis Due to Oil of Citronella – The Journal of Investigative Dermatology