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General measures on preventing mosquito bites and mosquito breeding

General measures on preventing mosquito bites and mosquito breeding

Prevention of mosquito bites

1. Wear loose, light-coloured, long-sleeved tops and trousers.

2. Use DEET-containing insect repellent on exposed parts of the body and clothing.

  • Pregnant women and children of 6 months or older can use DEET-containing insect repellent. In general, use DEET of up to 30% for pregnant women and up to 10% for children

3. Take additional preventive measures when engaging in outdoor activities:

  • Avoid using fragrant cosmetics or skin care products
  • Re-apply insect repellents according to instructions  
  • If both insect repellents and sunscreen are used, apply insect repellents after sunscreen

Prevention of mosquito proliferation

1. Prevent accumulation of stagnant water

  • Change the water in vases once a week
  • Avoid using saucers underneath flower pots
  • Cover water containers tightly
  • Ensure air-conditioner drip trays are free of stagnant water
  • Put all used cans and bottles into covered dustbins

2. Control vectors and reservoir of the diseases

  • Store food and dispose of garbage properly

For more information about control and prevention of mosquito breeding, please visit the website of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) at

Advice for travellers

1. Take preventive measures to avoid mosquito bites. For children who travel to countries or areas where mosquito-borne diseases are endemic or epidemic and where exposure is likely, children aged 2 months or above can use DEET-containing insect repellents with a concentration of DEET up to 30%. For details about the use of insect repellents and the key points to be observed, please refer to 'Tips for using insect repellents'.

2. If going to affected areas or countries, arrange medical consultation at least 6 weeks before the trip, have extra preventive measures to avoid mosquito bites.

3. If travelling in endemic rural areas, carry a portable bed net and apply permethrin (an insecticide) on it. Permethrin should NOT be applied to the skin. Seek medical attention promptly if feeling unwell.

4. Scientific studies have shown that infected persons can transmit the virus to mosquitoes through mosquito bites even if they remain asymptomatic or before their onset of symptoms, leading to further spread of the disease. Hence, travellers who return from affected areas should apply insect repellent for 14 days after arrival to prevent mosquito bites. If feeling unwell e.g. having a fever, the person should seek medical advice promptly, and provide travel details to the doctor.

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