It is not known whether insect repellents such as DEET are safe to use during pregnancy. Some studies show that they may increase the risk of birth defects. However, these studies are small, and more research is needed. However, there are a few things that you should know before you start using insect repellents during pregnancy.
Most insect repellents contain DEET, a chemical that may be toxic to your unborn child. Luckily, there are nonchemical alternatives that are safe to use during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Some of these insect repellents contain ingredients such as chrysanthemum, citronella, or citrus. These products are generally less effective than DEET, but they are safer.
DEET is the most common active ingredient in bug sprays. It is FDA-approved and registered by the EPA as a chemical that repels insects. It is safe to use during pregnancy, but you should limit its usage. Low concentrations of DEET provide up to two hours of protection.
You can also use fly spray during pregnancy, but you should be careful about what concentration you use. The higher the concentration, the longer it lasts. It is better to use citronella oil instead of DEET. Citronella oil repels insects without the toxicity of DEET. However, there is limited evidence supporting its safety during pregnancy.