How to Protect Yourself from the West Nile Virus

West Nile Virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne disease that can lead to severe fever, encephalitis, or meningitis. While most people infected with WNV will have no symptoms, it’s crucial to take preventive measures, especially during mosquito season. 

Here’s how you can protect yourself and your loved ones from this potentially dangerous virus.

Understand the Virus

Before diving into preventive measures, it’s essential to understand the basics:

  • Transmission: WNV is primarily transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito.
  • Symptoms: While 80% of infected people show no symptoms, some may develop fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Severe symptoms include high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness, and paralysis.
  • High-Risk Groups: People over 60 and those with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, and kidney disease, are at higher risk of severe symptoms.

Prevention Tips

1. Use Insect Repellent

  • Opt for repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus.
  • Apply repellent to exposed skin and clothing, following the product’s instructions.

2. Wear Protective Clothing

  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outdoors.
  • Consider treating your clothing with permethrin or buying pre-treated clothing.

3. Avoid Peak Mosquito Hours

  • Mosquitoes carrying WNV are most active from dusk to dawn. Limit outdoor activities during these times or ensure you’re adequately protected.

4. Maintain Your Surroundings

  • Regularly check your home for stagnant water in flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, and birdbaths. Empty and scrub these items weekly.
  • Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes outside.

5. Stay Informed

  • Stay updated on WNV activity in your area by checking local news or health department updates.

6. Seek Medical Attention

  • If you develop symptoms of severe WNV illness, such as unusually severe headaches or confusion, seek medical attention immediately.

Seek Professional Help with 1st Stryke Pest

Protecting yourself from the West Nile Virus is a shared responsibility. Stay informed, take preventive measures, and encourage your community to do the same. Your health and safety are worth it! Give 1st Stryke a call today at (877) 787-9531 for your complimentary quote and help prevent your family from exposure to the West Nile Virus.