You’ve loaded up your cart with mosquito repellents that you can spray or slather onto your kids, but those delightful moments spent applying chemicals or messy products to your active and squirmy children can be a thing of the past with today’s technology.
The way most of these repellents work is by creating a “zone of protection” (or, as your kiddos might call it - a mosquito force field). This is great because it can provide an area with little to no mosquito activity for you to enjoy with your family. These electronic mosquito repellents provide a place for you to hang out, catch up with your parent friends on a playdate, enjoy an outdoor barbecue dinner, or watch a soccer game.
However, electronic mosquito repellents don’t work quite as well as we would like them to. Let’s face it; your kids are not going to stay in the invisible force field no matter how cool you try to make it seem. A 12 to 25-foot radius is nothing for a kid when they want to play—nor should it be! Plus, some of the electronic mosquito repellents might actually be doing more harm than good.
Curious about how to have non-stop outdoor fun with the people you love most?
We’ve got your back. Read on for more.
What Type of Electronic Mosquito Repellents Exist?
There are three primary types of electronic mosquito repellents out there. The three categories we’ve broken them into include the diffusers, the ultrasonics, and the zappers.
Each type of repellent works a little bit differently, but all are on the market to help you avoid dealing with itchy red bumps that can ruin your family’s time outdoors.
Electronic Repellents Type 1: The Diffusers
Most of us are familiar with the idea of diffusing. You probably even have a diffuser somewhere in your house with a blend of calming essential oils. These oils are often key in attempting to reign in the chaos and encourage nap time so that you can have a moment to breathe. However, did you know that you can use mosquito repellent diffusers?
There are several types of diffusers that can repel mosquitoes. Some are handheld, some are worn, and some are used to cover a large area. Depending on where or when you might use this device, one might be better than the others for you.
First, let’s talk about smells. As parents, you smell a lot of different things every day… Some are more pleasant than others. So, you might be thinking, “Wouldn’t a diffuser meant to keep mosquitoes away STINK?”
You’re not alone in this thought process. After all, many of us thought the same thing; we are all familiar with the deeply gross smell of traditional bug spray. We assumed that a diffuser would essentially mist a solution of smelly bug spray into the air that we’d be stuck smelling and breathing in. YUCK. Fortunately, for some of these devices, that is not the case.
How do these work? As we mentioned, these devices come in many shapes, sizes, and have varying coverage areas. They diffuse through the air passing through a cartridge or as a liquid that is diffused through heating the solution.
However, diffusers are not as safe as they might seem. There are essential oils that are safe for people, our pets, and our environments. However, many companies do not use these ingredients. They often opt for formulas that include a base of either allethrin or metofluthrin.
These chemicals are known to be dangerous and pose a threat to our whole family, including our beloved pets. Not only our pets, but if these chemicals (like allethrin) leak into our waterways, rivers, or oceans, they can do significant damage, especially to fish.
Are these types of diffusers worth it? Everyone has to make their own unique choice, but we are going to air on the side of caution and send these diffusers straight to the curb.
We are in need of more options.
Electronic Repellents Type 2: The Ultrasonics
Ultrasonic mosquito diffusers sound like something out of a kids’ futuristic movie, but they’re here, and they actually exist. They function by sending low-frequency sound waves into the air around you and confusing the mosquitoes. This can prevent them from landing and feasting on you and your kids, which is always a nice thing for a product to do.
Additionally, some of these devices are actually wearable. These devices work best when standing relatively still, which doesn’t work well for our more active kids.
Not into wearable devices? There are many tabletop-style rechargeable devices out there. Plus, these aren’t always limited to outdoor use! Some devices are also designed to be used indoors in case of a bug problem within the house or cabin in the woods. These devices provide a 15 to a 25-foot zone of protection for you and your family.
The Frown, The Letdown, and The Easy Fix
It probably goes without saying, but adults are generally better at long-term thinking than our little angels running around in the backyard. It might annoy us to go get our flu shot every fall, but we know, in the long run, this ouchy errand will save us from calling in sick at work. (And, do parents even get sick days when taking care of our little ones?).
Our kids, however, tend to think more in the short term. Asking our children to not lose their devices and keep their electronic mosquito repellent devices on at all times might be asking quite a bit. This is especially true for toddlers and younger kids.
That’s why we favor bug repellent stickers. Bug repellent stickers (like BuzzPatch) are amazing at warding off mosquitoes… naturally. That’s right: no need for any dangerous chemicals or substances. These stickers use kind-to-the-environment essential oils to keep our children safe and stylish with fun stickers to brighten their days in one than one way.
Electronic Repellents Type 3: The Zappers
Gone are the days where a “zapper” meant running around with an electric fly swatter trying to get a pesky bug out of your screened porch or living room. Now, these zappers sit quietly and attract the pests to them.
Today’s mosquito-zapping technology comes in the shape of tiny lantern-like devices. They use UV light or another light source to draw the mosquitoes to them. We are all familiar with bug zappers, but the idea doesn’t quite work as well for mosquitoes. You see, mosquitoes aren’t attracted to light the same way other bugs like moths are.
To get around this, some of these devices rely on a fan to suck up bugs into devices. However, bug zappers aren’t quite as effective when trying to eliminate mosquitoes.
Another downside to these types of devices is that they can smell a bit. (Remember, you’re essentially barbecuing the mosquitoes and other pests to a crisp). Ultimately, the things to be most concerned about are the chemicals that power these electric mosquito repellents. Unfortunately, one electric coil being burnt is the same as lighting up 75 to 137 cigarettes. That’s going to be a “nope” from us.
Final Thoughts: Double Trouble For Mosquitoes
It’s no secret that electric mosquito repellents just don’t work like we want them to. They are often ineffective, or at worst, downright dangerous—to our kids.
It’s time for a mosquito repellent that only takes out the target. They should only threaten bugs, not our families.
Stop dreading the feared cry of “I’m itchy!” the natural way. With the safe and powerful BuzzPatch, your family will be protected from those blood-sucking, fun-destroying pests!
However, if you need to calm an itchy welt, apply a MagicPatch Itch Relief Patch. Not only do they calm and soothe the itching in minutes, but they prevent the bite from being brushed by clothing or blankets, which can re-irritate the sensitive skin.
Now, go: Get outdoors and show your kids that a few mosquitoes don’t have to ruin your day!
Hazardous Substance Fact Sheet | New Jersey Department of Health
US EPA - Pesticides - Fact Sheet for Metofluthrin | EPA.gov
Do Bug Zappers Work? | NY Times
Chronic exposure to pyrethroid-based allethrin and prallethrin mosquito repellents alters plasma biochemical profile | NCBI