Mosquitoes live in northern Texas and cause disease.
West Nile virus, which carries mosquitoes, has been detected in cities in northern Texas.
Dallas County and Tarrant County report mosquito pools as well as Frisco. Health professionals expect an increase in human infectious diseases.
Dr. Diana Cervantes, an associate professor and epidemiologist at UNT Health Science Center, said:
West Nile virus (WNV) is the leading cause of mosquito-borne diseases in the continental United States.
Most commonly, it spreads to people by being bitten by infected mosquitoes.
There are no vaccines or remedies to prevent WNV in people.
Fortunately, most people infected with WNV do not feel sick. Approximately 1 in 5 infected people develop fever and other symptoms similar to those of COVID-19.
“This includes fever and body aches. You may have a rash, but you don’t have symptoms of the upper respiratory tract. You don’t have a cough,” Cervantes said.
One in 150 infected people develops serious and sometimes fatal illnesses.
Other mosquito-borne diseases that have affected North Texas are Chikungunya and Zika.
The most common symptoms of chikungunya fever are fever and joint pain.
In late 2013, the Chikungunya virus was first discovered in the Americas of the Caribbean islands.
Travelers can protect themselves by avoiding mosquito bites. When traveling to a country with a feverish Chikungunya, use insect repellent, wear long sleeves and long trousers, and stay in an air-conditioned area or where you use window or door screens.
Zika virus is a virus that spreads after being bitten by certain types of mosquitoes.
If infected during pregnancy, the mother can pass Zika fever to the foetation.
Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause birth defects and developmental delay. Zika virus can also pass through gender and blood transfusions.
Fever, rash, joint pain, and red and pink eyes may occur, but about 80% of patients with Zika fever are asymptomatic.
Currently, there are no vaccines or specific treatments for Zika fever.
Your best protection is to avoid infection. Prevent mosquito breeding, protect yourself from mosquito bites, and practice safe sex.
Did you know that mosquitoes can breed in a tablespoon of water?
Follow these steps to prevent mosquitoes from breeding on your property.
Empty or remove trash cans, buckets, old tires, pots, flowerpots, and other containers that hold water at least weekly.
Keep out debris and accumulated water from the rain gutters.
Removes accumulated water around structures and flat roofs.
Change the water in your pet dish daily.
Rinse and scrub vases and other indoor water containers weekly.
Change the water in the water pool or bird bath several times a week.
For water that cannot be emptied or covered, use a mosquito dunk containing pesticides.
The backyard pool and hot tub should be properly chlorinated and debris-free.
Cover the trash can.
Carefully water the lawn and garden to prevent water from accumulating for several days.
Sift the gutter and the opening to the water tank or cistern.
If there are many mosquitoes nearby, treat the front and back door areas of the house with residual pesticide.
If mosquito problems persist, consider spraying pesticides on the vegetation around your home.
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