Nobody likes pesky mosquitoes. Mosquitoes can ruin a backyard barbecue or a tropical vacation with their annoying hum and the itchy and painful welts they leave.
Dealing with mosquitoes may be more serious than a few bites and an evening occupied with constant swatting. Mosquitoes also carry potentially dangerous mosquito-borne diseases, and care should be taken to avoid them.
Where are mosquitos found?
A more appropriate question may be, where can mosquitoes not be found? Mosquitoes thrive mostly in hot and humid conditions, though the real requirement for them to survive and multiply is stagnant water. Though common in the areas below, there are species which survive in places as cold as the Arctic Circle.
• North America
Diseases contracted by mosquitoes can bring about miserable flu-like symptoms, and usually, people recover. However, they can leave behind lasting adverse effects, cause birth defects or even death.
Here are some of the most common diseases and where you are most likely to contract them:
• Malaria- Malaria has been a fatal disease in Africa for decades. Many advances have been made in recent years to control malaria.
• West Nile- West Nile is found in Northern America.
• Zika- The Zika virus was first discovered in Africa in 1947. After making its way to Brazil, it moved to the U.S in 2015. It is found in Mexico and southern states such as Florida and Texas. It is very dangerous for pregnant women since it causes serious birth defects.
• Dengue- Dengue is prevalent in warmer climates in Asia and Mexico.
• Chikungunya- This disease is found in Asia and Africa primarily but has recently been found in Mexico and warmer European climates.
How to keep your family safe at home:
In communities and areas where mosquitoes are prevalent traditional mosquito control is practiced routinely. For this to be effective, the pest control companies use various pesticides which help control mosquitoes at the larva, pupa, and adult stages. Though the traditional mosquito control methods are very valuable, it is important for the individual to protect themselves and their families from these mosquito-borne diseases.
Here is a list of considerations for your personal battle against mosquitoes:
• Fans- Fans are helpful especially when sleeping. Mosquitoes can’t function in the wind.
• No standing water- Do not leave dishes soaking or extra water in flower pots.
• Plants that repel- There are many plants which provide a natural deterrent to mosquitoes and other unwanted pests:
• Protective clothing
How to keep your family safe from mosquito-borne disease while traveling:
Do your homework before leaving on a trip. Make sure you bring the proper repellent and clothing. Know where to seek medical attention if the need arises. Most mosquito bites are just temporary irritations, but if you develop flu-like or other symptoms days after being bitten contact a healthcare professional.