If you’re outside, especially between dusk and dawn, and you wonder “What’s that Buzz?” It could be mosquitoes!!!
While being bitten by mosquitoes isn’t ever pleasant, the real problem comes from the diseases that they can spread to humans. Specifically, the West Nile Virus has been known to be spread by infected mosquitoes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
More than 30,000 people in the US have been reported with West Nile virus disease since 1999, and of those almost 13,000 have been seriously ill and over 1,200 have died.
Many more cases of illness are not reported to the CDC, but it’s likely that more than 300,000 people from almost every state have been sickened in the 12 years since West Nile virus came to the US. The older you are, the more likely that you could get severely ill if you get infected. People who have ever received an organ transplant also seem to be at higher risk for severe disease. The reasons one person becomes severely ill and another doesn’t aren’t entirely known.
Unfortunately, Texas is one of the fourteen states that has reported human cases of West Nile Virus. As shown on the map human West Nile virus infections have been reported to CDC ArboNET from the following states: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington.
To prevent mosquitoes from infecting you with the West Nile Virus, the CDC advises the use of insect repellents when you go outdoors. Repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535. IR3535 is the active bug repellent in Avon’s Skin So Soft product line. Some oil of lemon eucalyptus and para-menthane-diol products provide longer-lasting protection.
The CDC also recommends wearing long sleeves and long pants especially between Dusk and Dawn and avoiding outdoor activities during these times.
Another effective preventative measure is to drain standing water. Mosquitoes must have standing water in which to begin their life cycle. Almost any vessel or area of standing water presents a potential “nursery” in which mosquitoes can develop. Everyone is encouraged to eliminate mosquito-breeding areas from their home and yard.
For more information about controlling the mosquito population and West Nile Virus check out this video and the following links to some of the cities in Northeast DFW.
Mosquito Control News & Information – City of Richardson
Mosquito Control – City of Sachse
West Nile Virus Update – City of Wylie
Mosquito Control – McKinney, Texas
West Nile Virus (WNV) – City of Frisco
Mosquito Control – City of Allen
Irving Fights the Bite – City of Irving
West Nile Virus – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Steps to Help Prevent West Nile Virus (allstate.com)
State’s first human West Nile infection reported in Anderson County (dallasnews.com)
JAMA: The 2012 West Nile Encephalitis Epidemic in Dallas, Tx (Avian Flu Diary)