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Bug Bite Prevention Share Print Page

Bugs (including mosquitoes, ticks, and some flies) can spread a number of diseases. Many of these diseases cannot be prevented with a vaccine or medicine. You can reduce your risk by taking steps to prevent bug bites.


Use a repellent that contains 20% or more DEET for protection that lasts up to several hours. Products containing DEET include Off!, Cutter, Sawyer, and Ultrathon.


Products with one of the following active ingredients can also help prevent mosquito bites. Higher percentages of active ingredient provide longer protection.

What other steps should I take to prevent bug bites?

Prevent mosquito bites

Prevent tick bites

Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass, brush, and leaves. Walk in the center of hiking trails.

Tuck in shirts, tuck pants into socks, and wear closed shoes instead of sandals to prevent bites.

Prevent tsetse fly bites

What should I do if I am bitten by bugs?

If you are bitten by mosquitoes

Find and remove ticks from your body

What can I do to avoid bed bugs?

Although bed bugs do not carry disease, they are an annoyance. Take the following precautions to avoid them:

Reference: Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)