713.494.4005

Preventing The Spread of The Zika Virus

 Effective Mosquito Control Provided in Houston TX

 

Residents of Houston are increasingly becoming fearful that the Zika Virus could spread to the city, given its high population of mosquitos. In the past year, Zika has been in the media quite a bit due to the Summer Olympics being in Rio, which has recently had a large outbreak. The virus is especially dangerous to pregnant women because their babies are at high risk of being born with microcephaly, or smaller heads than normal. This is a very serious disability.

Spread of Zika

The Zika virus goes back to 1947 when it was first seen in Uganda. The symptoms are usually that of a typical cold, like joint pain and a fever, so Zika didn’t get a lot of attention for decades. This changed in 2015 when the outbreak in Brazil caused nearly 200 babies to die, with more being born with microcephaly. Due to so many people travelling between countries, it was just a matter of time until it spread to the U.S.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has confirmed 1,403 cases of Zika in the United States currently. Since the symptoms are so similar to the common cold, there may be many more among people who have no idea they’re infected with Zika. The World Health Organization has now declared Zika to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.  

Transmission

Those living in Houston would most likely become infected with the Zika virus from a mosquito bite. Mosquitos tend to lay their eggs in sitting water, like ponds, a pet’s water bowl or buckets, and mosquitos spreading the disease usually bite in daytime. Once a pregnant woman is infected, she can pass Zika on to her unborn baby. The virus can also spread via sexual contact. So far there have not been any confirmed cases of it spreading in the U.S. through blood transfusions, but several people in Brazil seem to have been infected with Zika when they received a blood transfusion.

Preventing Zika

At the current time, the main way of preventing the spread of the virus is through mosquito control techniques. Standing water is where mosquitos breed, so sources like flowerpots, buckets and pet water bowls must be removed. Spraying areas where mosquitos breed and congregate can kill those carrying Zika. By staying indoors during daytime, you can avoid being bitten. When outdoors, wear long-sleeved tops and shirts with pants to cover the areas where a mosquito would bite and put repellant on exposed areas of the skin. Install screens on windows and use mosquito nets if necessary.

Mosquitoes pose the highest risk for contracting Zika. If a mosquito carrying the virus bites you, you may become infected. Once you develop the virus, you can pass it on to your unborn baby or to your sexual partner. Everyone living in an area where the virus exists is at risk for becoming infected with Zika. The main thing you can do to prevent it from spreading is to destroy mosquito populations that carry and spread the virus. We at Mosquito Station provide mosquito control services throughout the Houston area. We can come out to your property to assess the situation and remove the primary risk factors.