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DEET - Is it the best choice?

Not many of us actually know what DEET stands for but we do think of alarm bells when we hear it.

DEET (diethyltoluamide) is a harsh chemical introduced into the world in the 1950s.  It quickly became popular on a world scale for its ability to repel mosquitoes, flies and basically any annoying flying insect.

Back in the day we were oblivious to the effects chemicals had on our bodies. Who cared?  The generations lived care free, the war was over, people were building lives, education, jobs.  We didn’t hear about chemicals being bad for us – in fact if it did its job then we were happy.  The stronger the better.  We weren’t ‘green’ and didn’t have the research to understand we had options about how to live cleanly and improve our wellbeing by keeping our surrounds as natural as possible.

Queen Elizabeth is a perfect example. When DEET was first introduced as a mosquito killer it was used as an experiment during the Queen’s 1963 tour.  When walking through a public gathering, security people who walked behind the Queen sprayed DEET as they followed her to ensure she wasn’t bothered by mosquitoes. 

I think these days that chance of that happening again would be virtually zero.

We are bombarded every day though advertising and influencers on social media about what is good for us. Everyone has an opinion and everyone has a right to their own opinion and to make their own choices as to what’s right for them.

In our world today, we are the ones responsible for living as best we can. We have access to virtually anything but the key is research.  Get information, build your knowledge on ingredients and take the time to research the manufacturers making the products you are interested in.  Your time is an investment and it only needs to be done once.  Quite often you will find everything you need to know and if you don’t, ask questions.  It’s your body, it’s your life.

We are lucky that now we don’t need to spray DEET all over ourselves to be mosquito free. It is our choice if we do but fortunately we have enough information now to know that DEET is not doing us any favours in the long run.   There are enough chemicals already being sprayed into our world and into our lungs. 

Think about how you can reduce your intake. 

Nowadays there is always an alternative.

Mosquito Myths!

We find lots of mosquito trivia on the internet and take the time to sift through the real from the not so real. I recently came across a fabulous article courtesy of WA Today that highlights some cool mosquito myths – what works and what doesn’t. It’s fun reading!

Courtesy of WA Today - 21 November 2016 by Bridie Smith

Drinking beer repels mosquitoes, right? 

As much as we want it to be, this one isn't true. A study conducted in Burkina Faso found mosquitoes were actually more likely to target beer drinkers than water drinkers. The research concerned just one type of mosquito: Anopheles gambiae. This apparently malt-mad mozzie isn't among the mosquitoes found in Australia. However it is possible that drinking alcohol increases your meal appeal for mosquitoes, insects which are more attracted to a higher body temperature and increased carbon dioxide output from faster breathing.

Eating certain foods makes you unpalatable to mosquitoes

Wouldn't it would be great if tucking into a banana or overdosing on Vegemite or garlic sent the mosquitoes flying for the hills. Diet can influence the smell of your skin, which is one of the things that alert mozzies to you. There are up to 400 chemical compounds found on human skin however diet influences just a fraction - and not enough to stop mozzies targeting you for a meal.

Wearing light clothes stops mosquitoes being drawn to you

This is kind of true. They are attracted to dark colours, particularly navy blue. Wearing pale colours won't protect you from being bitten - but it might mean you get fewer bites.

Mosquitoes prefer women over men and children over adults

To a point, this is true. Less body hair makes women a more accessible meal and therefore a greater target to the female mosquito, who is seeking protein and iron-rich blood to nurture her eggs. Similarly young children would be more appealing than a hirsute hombre. Children are also more likely to react to bites and over time gain a tolerance to the mosquito saliva.

Isn't vitamin B like kryptonite for mosquitoes?

It's been tested. And tested. And tested. And the results are conclusive. Taking extra doses of vitamin B tablets to ward off mosquitoes doesn't work.

Bug zappers and UV lights can control mosquitoes

Zappers may kill a small number of mosquitoes but they also kill other insects and overall do more harm than good. As for the UV lights, there's not much evidence they attract mozzies and if they do it's the males. Which don't bite.

Take the natural approach: grow 'mozzie blocker' plants in your garden

Think about it. Are coastal areas with trees free of mosquitoes? Exactly. Sure, at concentrated levels the oils extracted from plants such as ti tree, melaleuca and eucalyptus might repel mosquitoes. But growing the plant in your garden won't.

Apps that use sound to repel mozzies work

No. They don't work. There's no evidence that apps which claim to emit a frequency mosquitoes dislike or replicate the sound of a dragonfly's wing beat to scare the mozzies off work. So save your money.

 

#newmountainsandalwood

#mosquitorepellent

#chemicalfree

#myth

Happy Birthday Just Once!

Keeping hands clean by washing them properly is one of the most important steps we can take and we can teach our children to avoid spreading germs and causing sickness.

All we need is soap and clean water and the time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday”

This is awful to learn but poop from people or animals is a major source of germs that cause sickness, diaorrhea and infections like hand/foot/mouth. They can get onto the hands in obvious ways but also in ways we wouldn’t think about – like handling raw meats. Yes…raw meats can have invisible amounts of poop on them. Yuk. A gram of faeces can carry 1 trillion germs.

Sneezing and coughing can transmit germs and make people sick.

So…handwashing with soap is super important! Don’t forget we use our hands more than we realise – we touch our eyes, nose, and mouth without even realizing it. Germs can get into the body through the eyes, nose and mouth and make us sick. What about computers, ipads and phones. These are the worst for carrying germs.

Teaching people about handwashing helps them and their communities stay healthy

Unfortunately, about 1.8 million children under the age of 5 die each year from diaorrhea and diseases and pneumonia, the top two killers of young children around the world. It is not enough to use only water, soap removes germs much more effectively.

We must start good handwashing habits early in life to help improve child development, reduce sickness and infections and the transmission of those yukky germs.

A good handwashing is apply the soap, some clean water and then wash thoroughly all over your hands and in between your fingers for the whole time it takes to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to yourself.

A simple yet effective way to teach our future generations.

Global Handwashing Day is 15 October!

#boolamarr

#newmountainmerchants

#handwash

#sanitiser

#sandalwoodseed

Scratching Is Too Late

Let’s face it, nobody thinks about mosquitoes until we start scratching and realise we’ve been bitten.

Mosquitoes and summer go hand in hand but they don’t have to be a thorn in our summer lifestyle. Google can give us thousands of mosquito products that claim to repel or kill mosquitoes but at the end of the day there is no need to spend a lot of money to do this. There are simple steps we can take at home that don’t take up a lot of time or money. With a little preparation you can make your summer entertaining mosquito free.

It seems ludicrous to have to prepare for a mosquito invasion but in this industry we hear far too many reports about exactly that happening. All it takes is a few too many rains, councils not spraying and the mozzies breed like crazy. Most times we get bitten, we scratch and that’s the end but these days we have seen a huge increase in mosquito borne viruses over the past decade. So what can we do to help ourselves, our pets and families?

Simple steps that we have all heard before but ACTUALLY WORK:

Hints around the house!

  • Check your property for potential breeding sources such as; stagnant fish pond, pot plants that hold water, unkept swimming pools, containers left around the garden such as wheel barrows.
  • Remove any container that could hold water from your garden or turn them over so they can’t hold water.
  • Ensure fly screens to doors and windows are fitted.
  • If you have a bird bath, replace the water in it daily.
  • Turn over canoes and small boats or cover them with a tarp. If covering with a tarp, make sure the tarp doesn't sag down and collect water on top of the tarp.
  • Keep drains and gutters clean so water will drain properly. Check your gutters for low points that may hold water.
  • Use yellow light bulbs for outdoor lighting purposes during times of high mosquito numbers

Mossies are a part of life and they are everywhere. Give the above ago and you’ve given your backyard and your family the best chance at reducing the uninvited guests.

#newmountainsandalwood

#mosquitoes

#mosquitomanagement

#mosquitorepellent

#chemicalfree

Sandalwood Remedy #18

Freshen your house!

Air Freshener

100ml of Sandalwood Hydrosol

20 drops of Sandalwood Essential Oil (this amount may vary to suit your household)

Fill a clean spray bottle with the Sandalwood Hydrosol.  Do not fill the bottle to the very top as you will need about a 1/3 of the bottle free so you can shake easily.  Add 10 – 30 drops of Sandalwood Essential oil depending on your desired strength.  Let the spray sit for a day before use. 

Shake well before use.

Did you know?  Sandalwood has antiseptic properties and the spray can assist in destroying bacteria and cleaning the air.

For more interesting info and remedies follow us on Facebook and Instagram @newmountainmerchants
These are suggested remedies intended soley for general purposes. Individuals should exercise their independent judgement in determining its appropriateness for a particular purpose of use.  A patch test should always be conducted before applying any ingredient. If irritation occurs discontinue use.

Sandalwood Remedy #17

Hydrate your Skin

Facial Mist

¼ cup of mineral water

2 tablespoons of Sandalwood Hydrosol

2 tablespoons of aloe vera gel

2 tablespoons of rose water

Combine all ingredients into a spray bottle and shake well!

Did you Know? Sandalwood Hydrosol has similar therapeutic properties to Sandalwood Essential Oil but is much less concentrated.  The aroma is similar but is soft and subtle. Perfect for a mist!

For more interesting info and remedies follow us on Facebook and Instagram @newmountainmerchants
These are suggested remedies intended soley for general purposes. Individuals should exercise their independent judgement in determining its appropriateness for a particular purpose of use.  A patch test should always be conducted before applying any ingredient. If irritation occurs discontinue use.
  

Sandalwood Remedy #16

Sore muscles?

Blend a few drops of sandalwood essential oil with Sandalwood Seed Oil and massage your body to get relief from muscle pain.

Did you know? Sandalwood is an anti spasmodic and calming and can help to relax the muscles. Sandalwood Seed Oil is an anti inflammatory.

For more interesting info and remedies follow us on Facebook and Instagram @newmoutnainmerchants
These are suggested remedies intended soley for general purposes. Individuals should exercise their independent judgement in determining its appropriateness for a particular purpose of use.  A patch test should always be conducted before applying any ingredient. If irritation occurs discontinue use.
     

Sandalwood Remedy #15

Open pores!

Close them by:

1 tablespoon of sandalwood powder

Sandalwood or Agarwood Hydrosol

Make a paste and apply it to your face.  Wash off with water after 15 minutes.

Did you know? Sandalwood cleanses your pores and helps to prevent pimples.

For more interesting info and remedies follow us on Facebook and Instagram @newmountainmerchants
These are suggested remedies intended soley for general purposes. Individuals should exercise their independent judgement in determining its appropriateness for a particular purpose of use.  A patch test should always be conducted before applying any ingredient. If irritation occurs discontinue use.
      

Sandalwood Remedy #14

For wrinkles, fine lines and furrows

Control them!

2 tablespoons of sandalwood powder

1 egg yolk

1 tablespoon of honey

Mix ingredients together and apply evenly onto the face and neck.  Wash off with cold water after 1 hour.

Did you know? Sandalwood is an emollient and therefore helps in increasing the elasticity of skin so there’s less sagginess.

For more interesting info and remedies follow us on Facebook and Instagram @newmountainmerchants
These are suggested remedies intended soley for general purposes. Individuals should exercise their independent judgement in determining its appropriateness for a particular purpose of use.  A patch test should always be conducted before applying any ingredient. If irritation occurs discontinue use.
    

Sandalwood Remedy #12

Redness, swelling?

Reduce irritability!

1 teaspoon of sandalwood powder

1 teaspoon of camphor

Mix the ingredients into rosewater and apply to the affected area. 

Did you know? Sandalwood is a natural anti-inflammatory agent which can reduce inflammation and swelling.

For more interesting info and remedies follow us on Facebook and Instagram @newmoutnainmerchants
These are suggested remedies intended soley for general purposes. Individuals should exercise their independent judgement in determining its appropriateness for a particular purpose of use.  A patch test should always be conducted before applying any ingredient. If irritation occurs discontinue use.