What is Zika virus disease?
Zika is a disease caused by the Zika virus that is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito of the Aedes species.
What are the symptoms of Zika?
Most people infected with Zika won’t show any symptoms or very mild ones such as fever, rash, joint pain, or conjunctivitis. Symptoms typically begin 2 to 7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito and can last for up to a week. A blood or urine test can confirm a Zika infection, so talk to your doctor if you have questions or concerns.
How is Zika transmitted?
Zika is primarily transmitted through the bite of infected Aedes mosquitoes, moving from person to person, spreading the virus among humans. It can be transmitted from a pregnant mother to her baby during pregnancy, resulting in severe birth defects such as microcephaly and Guillain-Barre Syndrome. Zika is also sexually transmittable from an infected male to his partner during unprotected sex.
Who is at risk of being infected?
Over 1,600 cases of Zika have been reported in 47 states, most of them travel-related. The first likely locally-transmitted cases were reported in Florida in late July, meaning Zika will likely continue its spread in the United States. For more information on areas with Zika, please visit the CDC’s website.
What is the treatment for Zika?
There is no vaccine or specific medicine to treat Zika virus. You should see your doctor immediately if you feel you’ve contracted the disease. The recommended action is to treat the symptoms, which means getting plenty of rest, drinking TONS of fluids, taking medications like acetaminophen (Tylenol) and paracetamol.
Where is Zika Virus located?
Currently, Zika has been detected in 47 states. As of July 20, 2016, 1,403 cases have been confirmed in the United States, all of which were acquired abroad. With millions of cases reported in South and Central America, the World Health Organization has declared a public health emergency, urging travelers destined for affected countries to postpone or cancel their plans.
Mosquito 101 – Get to know the enemy!
Mosquitoes are without a doubt the most deadly creature on the planet. There are over 200 species of mosquitoes in the US, 85 of which are found in Texas and of those, 6 are a major public health concern. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and WHO (World Health Organization), mosquitoes are responsible for nearly 1 million deaths per year. Mosquitoes are known to spread a wide range of serious and deadly diseases such as Zika, Dengue Fever, Encephalitis, Malaria, West Nile Virus and even dog heart-worm. Mosquitoes are not only a nuisance but also a potential for serious health issues.
Mosquitoes can lay thousands of eggs in as little as one inch of stagnant or standing water, such as water left in bowls, flower pots, clogged gutters/drains or even kids toys after it rains. One easy step towards mosquito control is making sure that there is never standing water around your property. Eliminating these water sources is one way to help control the mosquito population.
Mosquitoes are attracted to the warmth of our bodies and the CO2 we emit. When mosquitoes are not out prowling for blood, they feed on plant nectar from the bottom of leaves and plants. Trimming back heavy vegetation near and around your home is another way to help reduce their food source. Because mosquitoes are airborne insects, it is recommended to utilize a fog, or other aerosolized product such as a backpack mister, when combating these deadly insects. Although topical applications can be useful as a mosquito repellent they are nearly useless when it comes to knocking out the adult mosquitoes that can breed and spread illness.
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