The Health Department has recently issued a warning about the West Nile Virus. According to health officials, the virus is at its worst during the fall – which we are about to enter here soon – and that people should be even more careful. As recent as the 15th of August, there have been cases of West Nile Virus infection.
The Center for Disease Control has provided detailed information on how to protect yourself from possible infection:
When dealing with West Nile virus, prevention is your best bet. Fighting mosquito bites reduces your risk of getting this disease, along with others that mosquitoes can carry. Take the commonsense steps below to reduce your risk:
• avoid bites and illness;
• clean out the mosquitoes from the places where you work and play;
• help your community control the disease.
Something to remember: The chance that any one person is going to become ill from a single mosquito bite remains low. The risk of severe illness and death is highest for people over 50 years old, although people of all ages can become ill.
How do you avoid mosquito bites? Here are some more tips:
• Use insect repellent. When you go outdoors and you know that mosquitoes abound in the area, make sure that you spray yourself with insect repellent before going out. Make sure that you use an EPA-registered product.
• Wear long sleeves. Although mosquitoes can bite through clothes, wearing protective clothing can still hamper them. Long sleeves, pants, and socks will help.
Photo courtesy of Gerald Yuvallo