With summer comes mosquito season and while these pesky critters are annoying they are more than that. Mosquitoes can also carry disease, such as West Nile virus. While the virus does not produce symptoms in most people, some people can still will develop a fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea or a rash.
In order to avoid contracting West Nile virus from a mosquito then you need to avoid being bitten in the first place. Lucky for you we have provided you with a few quick tips on how to prevent mosquito bites:
Use insect repellents containing oil of lemon or eucalyptus on your skin for a less chemical insect repellent.
Use mosquito repellent containing an EPA-registered insect repellent such as DEET or Picaridin on your skin and clothing when you go outside, especially for prolonged periods.
Even if you use insect repellents your should try to avoid unnecessary outdoor activity during peak mosquito hours. This which include dusk, dawn and early evening.
Try to wear long-sleeved shirts and pants when you are venturing into mosquito-infested areas.
Cover babies’ strollers or playpens with mosquito netting.
Eliminate any standing water in your yard. Mosquitoes breed in pools of standing water.
Keep windows and doors closed in your home. If you must open windows or doors, make sure you have tight-fitting screens to prevent mosquitoes from getting inside.
Burn a citronella candle or torch when outside. The smoke can confuse mosquitoes to keep them from finding you. However, the range of the citronella candle or torch can be limited, especially if there’s a breeze.
Using some essential oils, such as clove or citronella oil, may provide some protection, although it won’t be as effective as insect repellent.
Be careful if using a mosquito coil, as there are some studies that suggest the smoke from a mosquito coil can be harmful to human lungs. Also, avoid bug zappers, as they are not effective in attracting mosquitoes, and may kill harmless bugs that could help keep your mosquito population at bay, such as spiders or dragonflies.
By avoiding mosquitoes and their pesky bites altogether, you can reduce your exposure to West Nile virus, while also avoiding the dreaded itch from mosquito bites.
If you start to show any symptoms of West Nile virus after being exposed to mosquitoes, contact your doctor.