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What to do about Bug Repellent and Sun Screen?

As we get ready to send our precious kids and selves out into the summer sun and outdoors, it’s important to find products that protect without being toxic. I’m going to share simple strategies for fun in the sun and tips for finding products you can trust.

Keep in mind that anything that you put on your skin can be absorbed into your body. Chemicals and hormone-disrupting substances in lotions and sprays will be able to get into your blood and throw your immune and endocrine (hormone) systems off track. 
To read more about the dangers of bug repellents and pesticides, here is a recent article in the Huff Post Green.

Of course it is important to prevent sunburns and insect bites, so we do need good solutions for summertime play.

Simple Strategies for Fun in the Sun: 
1. Wear a hat, shirt, loose pants, and/or sunglasses.
2. Keep your "time in the sun" to under 15 minutes at a time, and early or late in the day.
3. Use plants that are natural bug repellents (Citronella). See this post for lots of ideas!
4. Check for ticks after spending time outdoors.

My tips for finding products you can trust:
1. Avoid the ingredients listed at including parabens, chemical sunscreens (oxybenzone, 
benzophenone-3, and octyl methoxycinnamate), synthetic fragrance and propylene glycol.
2. Choose sunscreens with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. Here is a great example by Caribbean Solutions.
3. Look for bug repellents that are chemical-free.  I found a couple options that I'm excited to try: 
* Garlic-based product for yard
* Buzz Away Extreme repellent
I'd love to hear of products that you find and recommend. 

Have a wonderful time this summer knowing you are protected from the sun, insects and the products you use.

Dr. Doni

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