You can effectively prevent some of the common diseases that are carried by mosquitoes. It’s important that you understand the various diseases that they carry, and learn about what you can do to prevent contracting one of these diseases. Do you know all that you can about how to protect yourself?
Mosquito bites are itchy, red, and swollen lumps that are a nuisance to deal with. While they can heal up in a few days, there are some infectious diseases that these mosquitoes can carry around. When they bite you, you can become infected. If you spend a lot of time outdoors, do you know what these diseases are? Do you know how you can protect yourself from mosquitoes? It’s important to know all about protecting your body from mosquito bites. Many of the symptoms of these diseases are very unpleasant. Some are very dangerous.
Not only are mosquito bites itchy and annoying, but these bites could mean that you’ve come into contact with a harmful disease. In this article, we’re going to talk about some of the more common diseases carried by mosquitoes, and we’ll look at how you can keep them away. You don’t need to sit inside all the time. With a little prevention, you can safely enjoy your backyard or wherever you are headed in nature that day.
The West Nile Virus
According to the CDC, the West Nile Virus is currently the most common mosquito-sourced disease in the United States. Mosquitoes pick up this virus from birds that they feed off of. They can pass it to humans through a single bite. It’s a difficult condition to diagnose, which is why we don’t always have really accurate numbers regarding the number of cases in a certain area. Many people will come into contact with the West Nile Virus, but people often don’t experience any kind of symptoms. Only about 1 person in every 150 will get seriously ill. When people do exhibit issues, it’s typically a headache, body aches, throwing up, fever, rash or diarrhea. It only takes a few days to feel better, but there are cases of West Nile that require a person to be hospitalized. This usually occurs when someone becomes dehydrated, or they cannot seem to shake their symptoms on their own.
If you want to prevent the West Nile virus, you will have to take precautionary measures like covering your skin when you’re outside. You can also use a safe insect repellent that will effectively keep mosquitoes away. It’s not something that scientists or medical professionals have been able to control or prevent at this point in time. The prevention comes down to you.
It’s not common to contract Malaria in the U.S., but it is more common in countries like Central America, South America, African, Asia, the South Pacific and Eastern Europe. Most U.S. cases are travelers who have gone to one of these areas recently. There are approximately 1,700 cases of U.S. travelers contracting Malaria each year. As many as 5 patients will die each year from their Malaria. Symptoms will usually present themselves around the 1 week mark. However, it can take up to 30 days in order to see the first signs of Malaria. In rare cases, people have shown symptoms 1 full year later. Symptoms include fever, chills, body aches, headache, shaking, etc.
If you plan on traveling to a country that has frequent cases of Malaria, you can use an antimalarial medication to prevent symptoms. These medications usually are about 90 percent effective. You’ll also want to employ the use of bug repellent, and cover your body with light clothing as much as possible.
The Zika Virus
This was a common issue that occurred around the 2016 mark. The Zika virus wasn’t necessarily causing symptoms in the person who was bit by the mosquito. Women that were pregnant and contracted the virus were going on to have babies that had abnormal skull shapes and sizes. The most common locations for the virus were in Hawaii, Texas and Florida. The virus itself was quickly addressed and contained. We don’t really hear about it anymore, so it’s not something you necessarily have to worry about preventing.
How to Prevent Mosquito Bites from Occurring
If you want to effectively prevent mosquito bites from taking place, there are some methods you can utilize. Let’s look closely at some of them.
Using Natural Oils
A lot of people choose not to use insect repellent because of the potentially-dangerous chemicals that are used to formulate them. Luckily, there are some natural essential oils that you can use to keep mosquitoes away. This can include citronella, eucalyptus and soybean oils. You can make a concoction for your own use, but there are many natural products on the market now that you can safely use on yourself and children. Citronella candles are often used to make candles that you can light in your backyard when you want to keep pests away. Just be sure that you reapply your products or oils often. They tend to only work for about 2 hours at a time.
Use a Fan
It might seem silly to have a fan on you when you’re outside, but mosquitoes are very lightweight pests. They weight between 2.5 and 10 milligrams. Even the littlest bit of wind will make it harder for them to fly and land on your body.
Cover Your Exposed Skin
It may be warm out, but wearing shorts and a tank top will attract mosquitoes to your body. If you have some lightweight clothing that will keep you cool while covering you up, this will prevent mosquitoes from being able to bite you. Keep in mind, a mosquito can effectively bite through your clothing. Don’t feel like you’re completely safe when wearing protective clothing.
Pay Attention to the Time
Many mosquitoes come out around the early morning hours or later in the evening when the sun is getting ready to go down. Keep windows closed during these times. These are also the times that you should be using your oils, protective clothing, etc.
Pay Attention to the Landscaping in Your Yard
Mosquitoes are attracted to areas that have standing water. If you keep your yard clean and well-kept, this should prevent mosquitoes from gaining access to your body for a snack. Keep your gutters clear, think about tossing your birdbath and keep your ground level so water doesn’t pool up.
Can You Keep Mosquitoes Out of Your Yard?
Aside from using citronella or other oils in the areas where you will be, there are pest control specialists that can help protect your yard from things like mosquitoes. There are also products that you can buy, allowing you to treat your yard on your own.
Are There Natural Methods of Mosquito Repellent That Can Be Used Around my Home?
We talked a bit about the natural oils that mosquitoes don’t like. This includes citronella, eucalyptus and soybean oil. You may be very concerned with the kinds of products that would be used in your yard or around your home if you have a pest specialist come out. This is understandable, especially if you have children or pets that are often outside. There are natural products that can be very effective. They may need to be reapplied more often, however.
Can a Mosquito Bite Become Infected?
Mosquito bites can quickly become infected after they become inflamed and you start itching them. When this happens, it can take quite a while for you to heal the area up. This is why it’s a good idea to prevent the bites before they even occur.
There are a number of natural and safe solutions for keeping mosquitoes at bay. It’s up to you to decide, what the best options are for your family and your home. If you’re going to be traveling in the near future, speak to your doctor about how you can protect yourself while you’re away. While mosquito-born diseases are present in the environment, you can do a lot to protect yourself.