Health Risk Assessment: Evaluating Your Risk for West Nile Virus

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Health Risk Assessment: Evaluating Your Risk for West Nile Virus

TThe summer months are a great to time to enjoy the outdoors. While you are barbequing, swimming and hiking there are some pests you should be aware of. Mosquitoes, those annoying insects whose bite can cause red itchy bumps, can also transmit disease. According the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, West Nile Virus is on the rise and the very young and elderly need to be especially careful to protect against this disease—people over 50 are most at risk for the disease.

Most people infected with the West Nile Virus (WNV) have hardly any symptoms at all—a smaller number with West Nile Virus symptoms may experience:

• High fever
• Headache
• Muscle weakness
• Stiff neck
• Vision problems
• Tremors

West Nile Virus treatment is mostly done at a hospital and is supportive care. There is no known treatment for the West Nile Virus disease.

To prevent WNV avoid mosquitoes:

• Use insect repellant with DEET or similar active ingredient
• Avoid being outdoors or use more precautions when mosquitoes are most active: dawn and dusk
• Use screens to keep insects out of your house
• Limit mosquito breeding grounds by eliminating standing water in pots, wading pools, and spare tires



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