Mosquitoes: How to protect yourself and understanding the risks of a bite

Protection from Mosquitoes



Why do we need mosquito protection?


-Mosquitoes spread viruses that make us sick. Less commonly, these sicknesses kill us. Nonetheless, the risk of fatality remains.

-Some of the viruses that we contract from mosquitoes can cause long term disease/illness.

-Of the least concerns regarding mosquitoes, their bites are annoying and itchy.


Which viruses do we need to know about, specifically, when considering mosquito contamination?


  1. West Nile Virus (WNV): It is the most common spread virus by mosquitoes in the continental U.S. For clarification, the continental U.S. refers to every state residing on the continent of North America. There are no vaccines to prevent or medications to treat West Nile Virus. 1 in 5 people with West Nile Virus develop a fever and other mild to intermediate symptoms. 1 in every 150 people with West Nile Virus develop serious, sometimes fatal illness. Severe symptoms of WNV are encephalitis, meningitis, confusion, and/or seizures. Symptoms within the mild category take place in 80% of cases: fever, headache, vomiting, and/or rash. While WNV was discovered first in New York in 1999, it has been around, globally for much longer. Scientists theorize that an infected stowaway mosquito first introduced WNV to the U.S.; the infected mosquitoes are originally from The West Nile District of Uganda.[1] [2]


  1. Zika: Zika is spread by daytime active mosquitoes and gets its name from the Zika Forest of Uganda. In the 1950s, the virus took place from Africa to Asia; it started to spread across the Pacific Ocean (Eastward) in 2007, leading to the 2015-2016 Zika Virus epidemic in the Americas. Zika Virus commonly causes a range of symptoms within the mild to “non-existent” category. On more rare occasions, Zika virus causes Guillain-Barre Syndrome in adults. Perhaps, one of the most alarming facts about Zika is that it spreads from a pregnant woman to her baby, which may cause the unborn child microcephaly, severe brain malformation, and other birth defects. The only thing that helps Zika virus in mild displays is taking ibuprofen and resting.[3] [4] [5] [6]


  1. LACV (La Crosse Encephalitis Virus): This virus can turn into a permanent terminal or chronic illness in severe and rare cases. “LACV was discovered in 1965, after the virus was isolated from stored brain and spinal tissue of a child who died of an unknown infection in La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1960. It comes from a species of mosquito that entered the US and spread across the SE of the US. There are 80-100 U.S. cases per year, but it is believed that the virus is under-reported because of occurrences where victims incur mild symptoms. The virus causes encephalitis, or inflammation of the brain. 5-15 days is the amount of time it takes for a LACV infected mosquito bit to show symptoms. Nausea, headache, and vomiting occur in mild cases, while seizures, coma, paralysis, and permanent brain damage take place in severe cases. The severe cases occur more commonly in children under the age of 16, and death occurs in less than 1% of clinical cases. [7] [8]


How can you be proactive in preventing a mosquito infestation/ opportunities to be bitten?


-Wear reputable mosquito repellents during mosquito season; their season takes place from Summer to Fall.

-If you are going to an area that is heavily wooded or contains standing water, consider wearing long sleeves.

-Remember that there are daytime and nighttime mosquitoes, so there is no time in the day where you would be less likely to receive a mosquito bite.

-In the cold, mosquitoes hibernate in areas where they seek warmth: garages, sheds, under or inside of home, and enclosed spaces; be sure to take extra caution amidst these areas during colder mosquito season.

-Do not leave standing water on your property: puddles, bird baths, water filled tubs/pots/buckets, etc.

-Sign up for mosquito treatments to be done on your property during mosquito season.



What happens during a mosquito treatment?


An inspector comes out to do an evaluation first and inform you of high-risk areas regarding mosquito homing. Recommendation will be offered to you to ensure the prevention of mosquito homing, regarding items or areas of the property that may need adjustment. Following your inspection, a technician would come out once a month at minimum to provide a spray application to your property. The spray application is a mosquito eradicator and deterrent that is micro-encapsulated, and EPA regulated, allowing it to last much longer than over the counter purchases.



Call your local pest control company today to ensure your family’s safety regarding mosquito infestations!!!





[1] Knox, R. (2012, August 29). With West Nile On the Rise, We Answer Your Questions. Retrieved July 06, 2020, from

[2] General Questions About West Nile Virus” 19 October 2017. Archived from the original on 26 October 2017. Retrieved 26 October 2017.

[3]  Malone RW, Homan J, Callahan MV, Glasspool-Malone J, Damodaran L, Schneider A, et al. (March 2016). “Zika Virus: Medical Countermeasure Development Challenges”. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 10 (3): e0004530. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0004530PMC 4774925PMID 26934531.

[4] “Symptoms, Diagnosis, & Treatment”Zika virus. Atlanta: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 3 March 2016. Retrieved 4 March2016.

[5]  “Zika virus microcephaly and Guillain–Barré syndrome situation report” (PDF). World Health Organization. 7 April 2016. Retrieved 8 April 2016.

[6]  Rasmussen SA, Jamieson DJ, Honein MA, Petersen LR (May 2016). “Zika virus and birth defects – Reviewing the Evidence for Causality”. The New England Journal of Medicine. 374 (20): 1981–1987. doi:10.1056/NEJMsr1604338PMID 27074377.

[7] McJunkin, J. E.; de los Reyes, E. C.; Irazuzta, J. E.; Caceres, M. J.; Khan, R. R.; Minnich, L. L.; Fu, K. D.; Lovett, G. D.; Tsai, T.; Thompson, A. (March 2001). “La Crosse Encephalitis in Children”. The New England Journal of Medicine344 (11): 801–7. doi:10.1056/NEJM200103153441103PMID 11248155.

“Epidemiology & Geographic Distribution | la Crosse encephalitis | CDC”. 2018-09-14.

[8] “Epidemiology & Geographic Distribution | la Crosse encephalitis | CDC”. 2018-09-14.