Your Healthy Family

Jun 7, 2013 10:21 AM by Marissa Torres

Protecting from West Nile

The Centers for Disease control says 2012 was one of the deadliest years for the West Nile virus across the country. As we gear up for summer, doctors want to make sure families know how to steer clear of virus carrying mosquitoes.

Right now its hard to predict what West Nile will do this summer, but if it's hot and wet, you can bet mosquitoes will be around. Doctors say adults over 50 are at the highest risk for serious infection, but children tend to spend the most time outside; so you'll want to keep their skin well covered. Wear light colored clothing when mosquitoes are most active- at dusk and dawn; and most importantly, use insect repellent that has less than 10% deet. Doctor Rita Ellsworth with Southern Colorado Clinic says anything higher can be unsafe for babies. She also says any bug spray should be rinsed off as soon as the children go inside. Ingesting the chemicals could make them ill.

Symptoms of West Nile are flu-like, so a high fever, sleepiness, and body aches. If symptoms don't go away, and you suspect a mosquito bite, you should seek immediate medical attention.

 

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