Mosquitos Could Bite into Memorial Day

May 24, 2012

By Darrin Clouse:

Most of us were fortunate enough to have enjoyed a mild winter this past season. Unfortunately, experts are warning the public of a possible negative effect from our early spring-like weather– the dreaded mosquito invasion might also come early.  Cases of the West Nile Virus have already been reported in some states.

So far in 2012 , there has not been a case of the virus making human contact, but several instances have appeared in animals such as dead birds and sick horses.

How to recognize the effects of the Virus

Most people infected by the West Nile Virus experience flu-like symptoms, such as fever and muscle weakness.

However, for a small percentage of people this can develop into a much more severe form of illness including symptoms such as inflammation of the brain, disorientation, convulsions and paralysis. People over 50 and those with weakened immune systems are especially vulnerable to the disease, according to Dr. Eli Avila, Secretary for the US Department of Health.

Avoid the breeding grounds

The best way to protect yourself from these pesky intruders is to make sure there aren’t any breeding-friendly areas around the outside of your house.

Here are some preventive measures you can take, as suggested by The Times News Online :

Dispose of cans, buckets, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar containers that hold water on your property.

• Drill holes in the bottom of outdoor recycling containers.

• Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with fish.

Have roof gutters cleaned regularly, particularly if the leaves from surrounding trees have a tendency to block drains.

Turn over wheelbarrows and don’t let water stagnate in birdbaths.

Defending yourself

Of course, more personal precautions include using repellant that contains DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus whenever going outdoors at dawn or dusk when mosquitoes are most active.

Wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants and shoes with socks helps, too. You might get hotter than you’d prefer, but it beats the heck out of flu-like symptoms or  possible brain inflammation!!

For more information , check out this report from NBC correspondent Kerry Sanders:

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