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Back To School, But Not for Mosquitoes

Armen Hareyan's picture

(NC)-The kids may be back in school, but that doesn't mean you can forget about mosquitoes and the risk of getting West Nile (WN) virus. Mosquitoes can hang around well into October and even November. It takes a good hard frost to kill them off.

WN virus is transmitted by mosquitoes. Mosquitoes get infected when they bite an infected bird. Most people who become infected show no signs at all, or only develop mild flu-like symptoms (fever, body aches, headache). More serious cases can include very bad headaches, high fever, stiff neck, feeling sick to the stomach, vomiting, drowsiness, and confusion. Anyone who experiences these problems should call or visit a nurse or doctor right away.

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To protect yourself from getting bitten by a mosquito, Health Canada recommends the following:

Wear light-coloured clothing. Use mosquito repellents containing DEET. Make sure that the screens on doors and windows on houses, tents and camping/hunting shelters are in good repair. If you spend a lot of time outdoors, especially in wooded or swampy areas, wear loose-fitting long-sleeved tops and pants, socks and a hat or cap; and wear a mosquito net over your hat or cap to protect your head, face and neck.

For more information on WN virus, or to link to your provincial or territorial web site, visit Health Canada's West Nile web site at www.westnilevirus.gc.ca