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All about: OFF! For Maximum Protection Topical

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Some commonly used brand names are:

In the U.S.—

  • Backwoods Cutter
  • Cutter Pleasant Protection
  • Deep Woods OFF!
  • Deep Woods OFF! For Sportsmen
  • Muskol
  • OFF!
  • OFF! For Maximum Protection
  • OFF! Skintastic
  • OFF! Skintastic For Children
  • OFF! Skintastic For Kids
  • Ultra Muskol

In Canada—

  • Deep Woods OFF!
  • Muskol
  • OFF!
  • OFF! For Maximum Protection
  • OFF! Skintastic

Other commonly used names are DEET and m-DET .

Category

  • Insect repellent, topical

Description

Diethyltoluamide (dye-eth-il-toe-LOO-a-mide) is an insect repellent used to keep insects away. This product is effective against mosquitoes, biting flies (gnats, sandflies, deer flies, stable flies, black flies), ticks, harvest mites, and fleas.

Diethyltoluamide is available without a prescription in the following dosage forms:

  • Topical
  • Liquid (U.S. and Canada)
  • Lotion (U.S. and Canada)
  • Topical aerosol (U.S. and Canada)
  • Topical spray solution (U.S. and Canada)
  • Towelettes (U.S.)

Before Using This Product

If you are using this product without a prescription, carefully read and follow any precautions on the label. For diethyltoluamide, the following should be considered:

Allergies—Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to diethyltoluamide. Also tell your health care professional if you are allergic to any other substances, such as foods, preservatives, or dyes.

Pregnancy—Diethyltoluamide has not been studied in pregnant women. However, studies in animals have shown that diethyltoluamide is passed on to the offspring. One animal study has shown diethyltoluamide to cause death of the fetus. Before using diethyltoluamide, make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or if you may become pregnant.

Breast-feeding—Diethyltoluamide has not been reported to cause problems in nursing babies.

Children—Children may be at increased risk of side effects because of increased absorption of diethyltoluamide through their skin. Use only products that have low amounts of diethyltoluamide and apply it sparingly to the exposed skin of children.

Other medicines—Although certain medicines and products should not be used together at all, in other cases two different products may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your health care professional if you are using any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.

Proper Use of This Product

Diethyltoluamide is for external use only .

For safe and effective use, read the directions on the label before using any diethyltoluamide-containing preparations.

Use a product that contains low amounts (less than 30%) of diethyltoluamide and apply it sparingly . Use just enough to cover the exposed area(s) of the skin. One application using a product that contains low amounts of diethyltoluamide will last about 4 to 8 hours.

If you are applying this product on your face, keep it away from your eyes, lips, or the inside of your nose . If you accidentally get some in your eyes or onto your lips or the inside of your nose, immediately rinse these areas with plenty of water. Check with your doctor if irritation, especially of your eyes, continues. If you are using an aerosol or spray form, do not spray it directly on your face. Instead, spray the palm of your hand and rub the repellent on, spreading it carefully on your face.

Do not apply this product to wounds or irritated or broken skin . To do so may increase the chance of absorption through the skin and the chance of unwanted effects. Apply sparingly onto skin folds because increased irritation is more likely to occur in these areas.

Wear long sleeves and long pants when possible and apply the repellent to clothing (shirts, pants, socks, and hats) instead of your skin to lessen exposure of your skin to diethyltoluamide. Do not apply it under clothing. (Diethyltoluamide will not damage clothing materials, such as cotton, wool, or nylon. However, it may damage acetate, rayon, spandex, or some other synthetic materials.) Wash treated clothing after use or when protection is no longer needed.

Read the label very carefully to see if the product contains alcohol. Alcohol is flammable and can catch on fire. Do not use any product containing alcohol near a fire or open flame, or while smoking. Also, do not smoke after applying one of these products and do not expose your treated skin to fire or open flame until the diethyltoluamide on your skin has completely dried . In addition, keep your treated clothing away from fire, open flame, or smoke.

Do not keep the repellent on your skin any longer than necessary. Once it is not needed, or after you return indoors, wash treated skin with soap and water.

Do not use the product on or near furniture, plastics, watch crystals, leather, or painted or varnished surfaces, including automobiles, because diethyltoluamide may damage these materials.

To use the liquid or lotion forms of diethyltoluamide:

  • Apply enough repellent to cover the exposed area(s) of skin, rub in gently, and allow it to dry.

To use the topical aerosol or topical spray forms of diethyltoluamide:

  • Hold container 6 to 8 inches from skin or clothing. Spray in a slow, sweeping motion just enough repellent to cover exposed skin. Then spread evenly with hands to moisten all exposed skin and allow it to dry.

To use the towelette form of diethyltoluamide:

  • Wipe the towelette over the exposed skin and allow to dry.

Dosing—Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label . The following information includes only the average dose of diethyltoluamide.

  • For topical dosage forms (lotion, topical aerosol, topical spray solution, and towelettes):
    • To keep away insects, ticks, or mites:
      • Adults and children—Apply a small amount to exposed area(s) of skin. Reapply when needed.

Storage—To store this product:

  • Keep out of the reach of children.
  • Store away from heat and direct light.
  • Keep the product from freezing. Do not refrigerate.
  • Do not keep outdated repellent or repellent no longer needed. Be sure that any discarded repellent is out of the reach of children.

Precautions While Using This Product

Avoid breathing in diethyltoluamide.

Do not apply this product to the hands of young children. After applying this product to the skin of children, watch the children carefully to make sure that they do not get any of the repellent into their eyes or mouth . Do not apply the product under the diapers. Discourage children from licking the area of application. Diethyltoluamide can cause serious side effects, especially in children, if it gets into the mouth or is swallowed.

If you think that a side effect has occurred after application of this product, wash the treated skin and check with your doctor . Take the container of diethyltoluamide with you for the doctor to see.

Side Effects of This Product

Along with its needed effects, diethyltoluamide may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:

Rare

Changes in facial skin color; clumsiness or unsteadiness; confusion; convulsions (seizures); fast or irregular breathing; loss of consciousness; mood or mental changes; muscle cramping; puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes; reddening of skin; shortness of breath, troubled breathing, tightness in chest, and/or wheezing; skin blisters; skin rash, hives, and/or itching; slow heartbeat; slurred speech; tremors; trouble in sleeping; uncontrolled jerking movement; unusual tiredness or weakness

Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.

Developed: 06/23/1995

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