The use of insect repellants hasbecome an important aspect to mosquito infested areas in the Philippines thusthe use of organic citronella infused fabric softeners is needed.
According tothe investigation of Boonyuan et al. (2013), the use of oil extracts from hairybasil, ginger, lemongrass, and plai produce a strong escape response to Aedesaegypti mosquitos. However, among all the extracts, citronella has beenpopularly known and is widely used by many people as the organic insectrepellant.
In accordance to Conville’s (2011) study, the insects remainunharmed; moreover, the scent just repels the mosquitos which makes itdifficult for them to locate the human host.” Citronella oil can be createdinto many repellant products such as scented candles, sprays, soaps, wipes andcosmetics (Sproule, 2015). A large number of Filipinos aresituated in areas notorious for mosquitos and are exposed to the chance ofcatching dengue. Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral disease and is a currentproblem to tropical and sub-tropical regions throughout the world (World HealthOrganization, 2016). Su (2008) emphasizes that the increase of dengue incidencehas been affected by the rainfall patterns of the Philippines’ climate.
Becauseof this, some parts of Metro Manila and areas in other provinces which areprone to flash floods have been recorded to have dengue outbreaks throughoutthe years. The Department of Health (2017) points out that regions VI, III, andthe National Capital Region (NCR) are the top three regions with the mostdengue cases in the Philippines as of April 1, 2017. It has been recorded that3,285 Filipinos have been affected in Metro Manila alone. Dengue-carrying mosquitos haveimposed a risk to many Filipino communities and can even lead to death. DOH(2017) additionally advocate that from 2015-2017, it has been recorded that thehighest amount of deaths caused by dengue was in the year of 2016 with a totalof 179 deaths and 41,170 cases. Even though an effective vaccine exists, thereis still an estimated 200,000 cases and 30,000 deaths are reported annuallyworldwide (Campbell, 2004). Shepherd (2017) states that 40%-50% of the world’spopulation is at risk of the disease and when a severe case of dengue gets leftuntreated, the mortality rate is as high as 20%.
Signs and symptoms of dengueinclude high fever, headache, muscle pains, nausea, and rashes. The locals exposed in mosquitoinfested areas in the Philippines are not only at the risk of catching thedengue virus; moreover, other mosquito-related illnesses include Chikungunya,Japanese Encephalitis, Malaria and Filariasis (Gonzales, 2016). WHO (2016)argues that most mosquito-related diseases are usually found in tropical andsub-tropical areas in the world since the increase of temperature is directlyparallel to the volume of mosquitos.
Barbara’s (2003) findings advocate thatmosquitos usually lay eggs in stagnant water as the larvae hatch in two tothree days and when hatched, they take about a week to grow into a full adult. The prevention of mosquito-relateddiseases is now taken into consideration by many epidemiologists andpathologists and thus many solutions have been proposed to decreases cases ofillnesses annually. Examples of such actions include eliminating their breedingplaces and growing natural mosquito predators such as chickens, ducks, spiders,and frogs (Barbara, 2003).
However, as said by Campbell (2004), the most usedpreventive measure would be the use of insect repellants; furthermore, theycome in different forms such as visual, bioacoustic, and chemicalcharacteristics. Bill’s (1998) study says that DEET (diethyl toluamide) is themost effective repellant and can be effective for ten hours. Some reports saidit contains severe toxic reactions. The use of organic repellants has beenknown as an alternative.
Among all the extracts, citronellahas been popularly known around the world as the organic insect repellant(Boonyuan et al., 2013). It has been proven by many epidemiologists andpathologists that the oil extracts from the citronella grass serves as analternative to DEET.
The natural repellant is also cost-effective and does notimpose any negative effects to the skin. Anuar & Yusof (2016) advocate theview of using organic insect repellant oils on fabric and emphasize itsefficacy as a simple solution to prevent mosquitos; however, further researchis needed. There is a need to investigate onthe efficacy of organic insect repellants, especially the use of citronellaoil, as a proponent to prevent mosquitos and their vector borne diseases. Eventhough it showcases a cost-effective and a skin-friendly repellant, manyexperiments have shown that DEET still proves that it is the most effective inspite of its high concentration.
In the experiment of Kongkaew et al. (2011),they conclude that the protection time of the citronella oil for preventingAedes aegypti mosquitoes is less than 253 minutes in comparison with DEET. Inother organic mixture repellants, the oils rapidly evaporate causing loss ofefficacy and leaving the user unprotected (Maia & Moore, 2011). Vector-borne mosquito infections aremost common in tropical and sub-tropical regions.
The increase in temperatureis directly proportional to the mosquito population in an area (WHO, 2016). Asobserved by Barbara (2013), mosquitos lay their eggs and develop their larvaein stagnant or undisturbed water. Su’s (2008) study emphasized that the climateof the Philippines is a major facor to the outbreak of common mosquitoinfections such as dengue from the Aedesaegypti. The DOH’s (2017) data suggested that regions VI, III, and theNational Capital Region (NCR) are the top three regions with the most denguecases in the Philippines as of April 1, 2017 with Metro Manila having 3,284cases.
It is possible to lessen mosquitobites in an area by either reducing the number of mosquitos or preventing themfrom inflicting any harm. As mentionedby Barbara (2013), eliminating their breeding places, keeping natural mosquitopredators, and using less expensive repellants can all decrease the chances ofspreading any mosquito-related diseases. The most common way to prevent suchinsects is to used repellants which can be applied to the skin such as DEET. Applyinga repellent to the skin turns a mosquito away just before it lands (Chauhan etal., 2012).
Other forms of repellents include visual and bioacoustics or theuse of sound (Campbell, 2004). The use of organic insect repellentsconsisting of natural oils can serve as an alternative to the toxic reactionsof chemical-influenced insect resistance such as DEET. Among other commonnatural oil extracts from lemongrass, hairy basil, and ginger, citronella oilproved to have the greatest knockdown effect against Aedes aegypti population (Boonyuan et al.
, 2013). As suggested by Trongtokitet al. (2005), the presence of such cost-efficient products is beneficial inlow-income communities where these native plants can be easily grown. Therewould be no need of quality technology with high maintenance in order toproduce such affordable commodity. Citronella oil is widely known asthe popular organic mosquito repellent on the market. The use of this extractcan be found in the many varieties of citronella candles, citronella incense, andcitronella wristbands. However, as a basis of Ward’s (2002) study, thecitronella plant, alone, does not avert mosquitos since it is only in itsextract’s properties that does the work.
Sproule (2015) confirms that themosquitos avoid the lemony smell of citronella oil; moreover, burning acitronella candle is extremely useful in enclosed areas. Not only are citronella extractssafe to use but because of its natural state, it remains harmful to theenvironment unlike the other chemical-infused products. Nicola (2011) arguesthat unlike many chemically produced insect repellents, citronella oil isthought to cause little or no harm to wildlife or the environment, due to itslow levels of toxicity. With this in mind, it would be most ideal tomass-produce such items. The higher quantity of supplies, more consumers caneasily access this resistance and can be more commonly found in stores. In order to increase theeffectiveness of citronella oil, some researchers conducted studies to findmore practical uses of the extract.
For example, Kongkaew et al. (2011) holdthe position that the combination of citronella oil and vanillin is likely tohave a longer protection time compared with citronella oil alone; additionally,the combination of citronella oil and vanillin provided complete repellency atleast 3 hours. Anuar & Yusof (2016) also conducted methods on preventingmosquitos with the combination of repellent on textile. The research paradigm would be fromAnuar & Yusof’s (2016) study, ‘Methods of imparting mosquito repellentagents and the assessing mosquito repellency in textile’. In order to avoid thetransmission of diseases, fabrics can act as a physical barrier between humanskin and the disease-carrying mosquitos.
The most commonly used textilematerials to impart the mosquito repellent comes from cotton, polyester andblended fabrics. An e?cient fabric material to treat with the mosquitorepellent agent has been proven to demonstrate the good properties of being apractical or easy way to ward off mosquitos on a daily basis. Additionally,among the set-ups in testing the efficacy of insect repellents, it has beensuggested that the use of the “mosquito cage test” is the most reliableprocedure due to the fact that there is a presence of a human test subjectwhich replicates a real mosquito-biting scenario.
However, scientists still recommendthe use of chemical-infused repellents because of its long-lasting effectsagainst insects and its greater efficacy. It is also noticeable that usingorganic oils is still unreliable in certain cases. In the dissertation of Maia& Moore (2011), the use of citronella extract is not as effective as DEETsince the oils rapidly evaporate causing loss of efficacy and leaving the userunprotected. Day’s (1999) and Thompson’s (1998) theses concluded that DEETproved most effective among other natural extracts and efficacy can last up to10 hours if strong concentrations are applied. DEET has a good safety record;however, the appropriate and safest concentration to use remains unclear.
A considerable amount of researchhas been made regarding which type of method would be the most effective inpreventing mosquitos from harming and inflicting diseases. It has beensuggested that DEET proves most effective than any other organic repellant.However, less attention has been paid to using organic extracts practically. Asstated before by Anuar & Yusof (2016), fabrics can act as a physicalbarrier between human skin and the blood sucking mosquito. Additionally,because citronella extracts have been known as the most potent insect repellentamong the other organic oils, a citronella infused fabric conditioner can beproduced and mass-produced because of its cost-efficiency. However, it is still not clearwhether the combination of citronella extracts with fabric conditioner canprove effective since there were no other previous researches that have done suchmethod. The researchers of this papershould still measure the amount of citronella oil needed have high efficacywhile also being cost-efficient with the consumers. Additionally, experimentsshould be conducted regarding how long the potency of the prototype can last.
Further research is still required. The aim of this paper is to create acitronella infused fabric softener and prove its efficacy as a practical andorganic repellent against mosquitos; moreover, this product can aid communitieswhere mosquito-related infections are recurrent. Illnesses such as Chikungunya,Japanese Encephalitis, Malaria, Filariasis, and the dengue virus are common intropical areas such as the Philippines because of the high temperature which ismost suitable for the growth of the mosquito population (WHO, 2016). In accordance to the data of DOH (2017), thereare more than 20,000 reported dengue cases in the Philippines each year.Because of this, the findings from this report would like to create acost-effective repellent which can be easily accessed and purchased by manyFilipinos in order to lessen the infections.
Additionally, it is harmless tothe environment and to human contact because of its organic and natural state. This research study presents data onthe effectiveness of the citronella infused fabric softener in repelling ofmosquitos. The people who will benefit from this study are the communitiesaround the Philippines which are infested with mosquitos carrying deadlydiseases such as dengue.
The experimental procedure would follow other pastexperiments which also study the efficacy of insect repellents. In order to endup with significant results, the researchers would use a “mosquito cage test”in order to test the which varying percentages of citronella is the mosteffective against mosquitos and cost-effective among Filipino communities. Thisresearch follows the experimental approach of Anuar & Yusof’s (2016) study,’Methods of imparting mosquito repellent agents and the assessing mosquitorepellency in textile’.