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Pesticide Safety


During this time of year, bugs and pests are commonly seen or felt when outdoors. Pesticides are commonly used to prevent or destroy pests. However, pesticides can be dangerous if not used correctly. All pesticides, from rat poisoning to insect repellent sprays, should be used with care.   

If using pesticides:

  • Keep all products in their original container with original labeling. 
  • Always read and follow the directions on the packaging before use. 
  • Only use pesticides for their intended purpose.
  • Never use more of these products than recommended.  
  • Apply pesticides for your yard or garden away from people and pets and keep people and pets off the area for as long as directed on the label. 

Insect Repellents 

Insect repellents can help in the prevention of mosquito borne illnesses, such as Zika. However, it is important to follow safety recommendations when using these products. 

  • The CDC recommends 4 insect repellents: DEET, Picardin, IR3535, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus 
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends using a DEET concentration of less than 30% on children. 
  • Do not allow children to apply insect repellent to themselves or others. 
  • Do not apply insect repellent to hands. 
  • Do not use more insect repellent than is needed. 
  • Wash skin with soap and water once indoors. 

If water is stored near a home, such as a rain barrel, consider using mosquito dunks, which are safe around children and pets. 

Save the West Virginia Poison Center's number into your phone and keep the number handy for any questions relating to poisonings. Call our medical experts at 1-800-222-1222 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.