Know the Facts | Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus

What is Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus?

Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus (EEEV or Triple E) is a mosquito-borne disease that is spread through mosquitoes who have bitten an infected bird. The primary EEEV vector is a swamp mosquito called the black-tailed mosquito which transmits the virus to birds, or becomes infected by feeding on infected birds in their swampland habitat. When a mosquito that typically feeds on humans feeds on the infected bird instead, they then contract EEEV. That mosquito then transmits the illness to horses and humans through an additional bite.

What should I know about EEEV?

While the probability of getting EEEV is low, it is still important to be aware of the symptoms and importance of protecting yourself, however infrequent the cases are. Human EEEV cases occur so infrequently because the primary transmission cycle takes place in and around swampy areas where human populations tend to be limited. If you are someone who works outdoors or engages in recreational activities in endemic areas, it’s especially important to be aware of the virus. Although anyone can contract the disease, those under the age of 15 and over 50 are at a higher risk of a severe case of EEEV.

What should I know about Triple E in 2019?

In the United States, few human cases are reported each year. According to the CDC, in 2018, only 6 human cases were reported nationwide. However, 2019 has seen a rise in the number of human cases totaling to over 30 confirmed or suspected cases in seven states: Michigan, Tennessee, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Jersey. The CDC has provided a comprehensive map of confirmed cases by state from 2010-2019, as well as updating the map whenever new cases are confirmed. You can also view confirmed cases for other mosquito-borne illnesses such as West Nile Virus, Zika and Dengue fever.

What are the symptoms?

The CDC notes that there are two forms of EEEV: systemic or encephalitic. Systemic infection has an abrupt onset and can result in fever and chills. The illness lasts one to two weeks and recovery is complete when there is no central nervous system involvement. The encephalitic form starts as systemic but will manifest into more serious symptoms, such as fever, headache, irritability and in some cases brain damage. It usually takes between four and 10 days after being bitten to notice symptoms. If you or anyone you know starts to show any symptoms it is important to contact your healthcare provider to determine the best course of treatment.

How is EEEV treated?

While the disease can be prevented in horses with the use of vaccinations, there is no preventative or cure for EEEV available for humans. According to the CDC, “Patients with suspected EEE should be evaluated by a healthcare provider, appropriate serologic and other diagnostic tests ordered and supportive treatment provided.”

What can I do to prevent mosquito-borne illnesses?

technician sprayingThe best prevention against Eastern Equine Encephalitis is a reduction of mosquito populations and the avoidance of mosquito bites. Professional mosquito control services such as the barrier treatment offered by Mosquito Joe® provides the best defense against mosquito-borne illnesses like EEEV. Additionally, eliminating breeding areas on your property keeps mosquitoes from producing and reduces the risk of getting sick from a mosquito bite. To help reduce the population on your property, consider the following:

  • Unblock drains and gutters
  • Have fans in outdoor spaces to eliminate mosquitoes from flying close by
  • Avoid allowing standing water to accumulate in outdoor containers such as flowerpots, tires, dog bowls, etc.
  • Screen windows and doors
  • Use mosquito repellant and wear protective clothing (long  sleeves and long pants)
  • Let Mosquito Joe be your second line of defense by getting a barrier treatment that protects your yard from mosquitoes, ticks and fleas

At Mosquito Joe, we take our job of keeping your yard itch-free seriously.  With our licensed technicians and a passion for making outside fun again, our job is not done until you and your family are happy. To add an added layer of defense against mosquitoes in your outdoor spaces, contact your local Mosquito Joe today to enjoy a bite-free yard!

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Lyme Disease in Pets

Mosquito Joe provides mosquito, tick and flea control treatment to residential and commercial customers across the country. We ensure outside is fun again for our customers’ families and pets by eliminating swatting and scratching. We can all agree that our four-legged friends are near and dear to our hearts so we want to make sure they can enjoy the backyard with their favorite humans without avoiding any health risks or concerns. While we certainly make customers’ yards itch-free with our mosquito barrier treatment, this same service also effectively rids the property of ticks and fleas. This is important for our furry friends as ticks carry Lyme disease, the most commonly reported vector-borne illness in the United States.

Transmitted through tick bites, the disease can be difficult to detect and can cause serious and recurring health problems for our pets. Deer ticks, carriers of Lyme disease, are found in forests or grassy, wooded, marshy areas near rivers, lakes or oceans. People or animals may be bitten by deer ticks during outdoor activities such as hiking, camping or while spending time in their backyards. It’s best to be proactive in preventing infection by taking appropriate measures to prevent tick bites, and for dogs, that means vaccinating against the disease. Always remember to ask your local veterinarians office to establish a monthly treatment program.

How to Prevent Lyme Disease

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, “The best way to protect pets from Lyme disease is to take preventive measures to reduce the chance of contracting the disease. Even during the last few weeks of summer, it’s important to remember that pets and people are at greater risk of being infected with Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases such as anaplasmosis, ehrlichiosis, or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.” Here are a few additional tips to prevent ticks in your backyard:

  • Avoid wooded and tall grassy areas where tick activity is high.
  • Keep your grass cut short and bushes and trees trimmed.
  • Remove wood piles from the home.
  • Move swing sets, sandboxes and other play areas away from wooded areas.
  • Upon returning inside your home after enjoying time outdoors, always check yourself, your children and your pets for ticks. Wash clothing immediately.
  • Use tick-preventative products – check with your veterinarian to find the right products for your pets.
  • Protect your property with a Mosquito Joe barrier treatment so your furry friends can roam your yard worry-free. Our long-lasting treatment works up to 21 days and protects your family and pets from mosquitoes, ticks and fleas.

Symptom in Pets

Once in the bloodstream, the bacteria can travel to different parts of the body and cause problems in specific organs or locations, such as joints, as well as overall illness. Other symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Reduced energy
  • Stiffness, discomfort or pain
  • Swelling of joints

If you see that your dog is experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to take them to the veterinarian so they can be tested and treated for Lyme disease.

How are Dogs Tested and Treated?

Once you arrive at the veterinarian, you will need to give a thorough history of your dog’s health and any symptoms they are having. Your veterinarian will run the necessary tests to determine what illness your pet has.  According to the American Kennel Club, “The two blood tests used for Lyme disease testing are called C6 and Quant C6, which can both be performed by your local veterinarian’s office. The C6 antibodies can be detected three to five weeks after an infected tick bites your pet. The next step would be the Quant C6, along with urinalysis to help determine if antibiotics are necessary.”

If the diagnosis is Lyme disease, your dog will be treated as an outpatient and given antibiotics for at least four weeks.

Did you know that ticks will arrive before mosquitoes and hang around after the mosquitoes are gone? Ticks arrive once ground temperature is above 45 degrees Fahrenheit, so it’s important to have a plan in place in advance, and to follow through during the fall.  Mosquito Joe ensures families and their pets are protected from mosquitoes, ticks and fleas. Don’t get ticked off this year – give your local office a call today to get on the schedule.

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Home Remedies for Mosquito Bites

Some of the most exciting moments of the summer occur outdoors. Between sports, backyard barbecues, and sunbathing, there’s never a shortage of things to do! One of the most annoying things about enjoying the outdoors are mosquito bites. Who wants to spend the first few innings of their baseball game swatting? And nothing ruins an outdoor wedding like taking your eyes away from the bride and groom to relieve the itch from a bite. We know how awful mosquito bites can be, so here’s some information on how you and your family can ditch the itch this summer.

Why do mosquito bites itch so much?

Mosquito bites appear when a female mosquito draws blood from a host. (Fun fact: Only female mosquitoes bite!) These bites can appear as small read bumps on the skin or as larger swollen areas. When mosquitoes draw blood, a protein is released into the blood system, causing general irritation of the skin and of course, itching.

We all know the automatic reaction to a mosquito bite is to scratch, however, this can lead to further irritation as scratching can damage the skin and lead to infection. So, what can you do? Here are some DIY remedies you can use:

One of the simplest ways to alleviate the itch of a mosquito bite is to apply a cold compress to the affected area. A small bag of ice can help reduce swelling and redness as well as temporarily soothe any itching. If you don’t have ice, a bag of frozen peas is a great alternative. Don’t worry, we’re not judging!

If you frequently get sunburned, you likely have the next ingredient in your cabinet. Aloe vera is a great, natural anti-septic that can help ease the pain of mosquito bites. You can use aloe vera gel which is available in most supermarkets or, you can get an aloe vera plant and scoop out the fresh gel. Another method is to remove the gel from the plant, blend until it reaches a smooth consistency, pour into an ice tray, and freeze. This makes for an easy application with less mess and a satisfying cooling sensation.

Another remedy that you may have at home is honey. While it’s most famous for being a natural sweetener, honey also has a number of antibiotic properties that can help combat irritation from mosquito bites. Using this ingredient, you can get rid of the itch fast and protect the area from infection.

Typically used in skincare, witch hazel is another household item that can be beneficial for fighting the itch of mosquito bites. Because it is an astringent, witch hazel helps lessen the irritation at the location of the bite.

Using essential oils to treat mosquito bites is a trendier solution. Natural oils such as lavender and tea tree oil help take out the sting and unpleasantness of mosquito bites, not to mention the added benefit of making you smell amazing. Be mindful when using essential oils, as a little goes a long way! You only need a drop or two diluted with a carrier oil (such as jojoba or coconut) or water to do the trick. Using too much can result in further skin irritation. To make this solution a little more convenient, you can create your own essential oil roller!

The most common ways to combat mosquito bites are applying common over-the-counter items such as hydrocortisone or calamine lotion. Both of these medicated creams help to relieve itchiness on contact and provide relief almost instantly.

The best way to protect yourself from mosquito bites is to make sure that your outdoor spaces have been treated by Mosquito Joe! Don’t let mosquito bites ruin your summer. Call Mosquito Joe today to ensure that you can enjoy your backyard without worrying about bites from mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas.

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Don’t let a tick make you sick | Lyme Disease Awareness Month

With the April showers behind us and May flowers starting to bloom, warm weather is finally here! With warmer weather brings more outdoor activities, as well as the possibility of a tick bite. May is National Lyme Disease Awareness Month and Mosquito Joe is joining the fight to protect families and furry friends from this tick-borne illness.

What is Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease was first detected in 1976 in Lyme, Connecticut and most commonly occurs in the Northeast, upper Midwest and mid-Atlantic regions. It is estimated that about 300,000 people are diagnosed each year.  Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks. In most cases, the tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more before the Lyme disease bacterium can be transmitted.

Signs and Symptoms

Early symptoms of Lyme disease usually begin from 3 to 30 days after being bitten by an infected tick. The most common early stage symptom is a rash where the tick was attached. This rash starts as a small red area that spreads outward to look like a bullseye. One may also experience flu-like symptoms, such as headache, fever, sore and aching muscles and joints, stiff neck, fatigue and swollen glands.

If you experience any of the following symptoms and have had a tick bite, it is important to seek medical attention. Untreated Lyme disease can produce a wide range of symptoms, depending on the stage of infection. Some of these symptoms may include fever, facial paralysis and arthritis.

Treatment

If you develop any of the above symptoms within several weeks of removing a tick, it’s important that you see your healthcare provider. When Lyme disease is diagnosed in the early stages, people usually recover rapidly and completely. In order to be treated, you will be given antibiotics by your healthcare provider, which most commonly are doxycycline, amoxicillin or cefuroxime axetil.

However, you can get Lyme disease again if you are bitten by another infected tick, so it is important to protect yourself from tick bites.

mosquito joe lyme disease

Preventing Tick Bites

Although it’s not possible to completely protect yourself from getting a tick bite, there are steps you can take to reduce your chances. Tick activity is higher during the warmer months, but ticks can be out anytime the temperature is about 45 degrees Fahrenheit. With the help from Mosquito Joe, you can get ahead of any tick problems you might have this season, while also implementing the following habits:

  • Keep grass short and underbrush thinned at your home.
  • Move wood piles away from the home.
  • Wear light-colored clothes to help you spot ticks easily.
  • Check your body for ticks and shower within two hours of being outdoors.
  • Move swing sets, sandboxes and other play areas to avoid tick bites.
  • Keep pets out of thickly wooded areas where tick activity is high and talk to your veterinarian about tick control options.
  • Let Mosquito Joe be your second line of deference for these intruders by getting a barrier spray that rids your yards for mosquitoes, fleas and ticks.

When you come in from the outdoors, always do a thorough check on yourself, your family and your pets. When doing a tick check, remember that ticks liked places that are warm, so make sure you check the back of your armpits, scalp, back of the neck and behind the ears.

But what if I do get a tick bite?

If you do find a tick on you or your family, there’s no need to panic! The key is to remove the tick as soon as possible. There are several tick removal devices on the market, but fine-tipped tweezers also work great. Follow the below steps on removing a tick:

  1. Use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin’s surface as possible.
  2. Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Don’t twist or jerk the tick; this can cause the mouth-parts to break off and remain in the skin. If this does happen, remove the mouth-parts with tweezers. If you are unable to do so, leave it alone and let the skin heal.
  3. After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol or soap and water.
  4. Never crush a tick with your fingers. Dispose of a live tick by putting it in alcohol, placing it in a sealed bag/container, wrapping it tightly in tape, or flushing it down the toilet.removal of tick

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: https://www.cdc.gov/ticks/removing_a_tick.html

Don’t be ticked off this summer

Let Mosquito Joe be another line of defense against tick-borne illnesses by applying a barrier treatment to your property. A trained and certified technician will treat your yard with an effective solution that eliminates mosquitoes, ticks and fleas for 21 days. As an alternative to our longer-lasting synthetic treatment, our all-natural solution repels mosquitoes immediately. This less-adhesive yet effective option requires treatment on a 14-day cycle.

If you’re still not sure if Mosquito Joe is right for you, give your local MoJo a call or request a free quote online. We are dedicated to making outside fun again for you and your family and our job is not done until you are happy!

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Tick Tips – What You Need To Know

 

With increasing evidence that ticks are capable of withstanding cold temperatures, these pests are becoming a year-round problem. Therefore, understanding the risks ticks pose and the best strategies to remove them are of great importance, even in the fall and winter months.

How to Prevent Against Tick Bites

  • Know where ticks hide. Ticks live in tall grass and wooded areas. Hunting, gardening or spending time in your backyard are all activities where you, your family and your pets could pick up ticks.
  • Dress to avoid ticks. Wearing long sleeves and long pants, tucking socks into boots and wearing light colored clothing can help prevent tick bites.
  • Utilize Mosquito Joe barrier treatments as an added layer of defense. Regular barrier treatments from Mosquito Joe eliminate ticks and give you and your family peace of mind.

Tick Prevention Techniques

How to Check for Ticks

Ticks can be as small as the tip of a pencil. Because they like to hide in warm places, they’re usually hidden and are difficult to find. Check these places once coming back indoors to ensure you don’t have any lingering ticks.

  • Under the arms
  • In and around ears
  • Inside belly button
  • Back of the knees
  • In and around hair
  • Between legs
  • Around the waist

Be sure to inspect outside gear and pets for ticks that could have latched on while outside. Additionally, throw clothing in the dryer for 10 minutes to remove ticks. Taking a shower within two hours of being outdoors helps wash off unattached ticks and decreases the chance of contracting tick-borne disease.

How to Properly Remove a Tick

  1. Don’t panic! Grab a pair of tweezers with a fine tip. This will be the best tool to remove the small insect.
  2. Pull upward using steady, even pressure. Using this motion will ensure that the mouth-parts of the tick don’t break off and remain in the skin. If this does happen, use the fine-tipped tweezers to remove the mouth-parts.
  3. Clean the bite. Use rubbing alcohol or soap and water to clean your hands, the infected area and your tweezers.
  4. Dispose of the tick. Place the tick in alcohol, put it in a sealed container, wrap it in tape or flush it down the toilet. Don’t crush the tick between your fingers as it could still transmit disease.
  5. Following up: check on the bite. If you develop a rash, fever or any of the other symptoms associated with tick-borne disease, seek medical assistance. Tell your doctor about your recent tick bite, when the bite occurred and where you acquired the bite.

Know the Symptoms of Tick-borne Illness

There are numerous diseases that are caused by ticks. Knowing what types of ticks are prevalent in your area can help you better understand the risks of certain diseases. Fever, chills, aches and pains are common across most tick-borne illnesses. However, many of the diseases have different and distinctive rashes. Knowing what to look for could help you identify early signs of Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, southern tick-associated rash illness (STARI) or tularemia.

To add an added layer of defense against your outdoor space, contact your local Mosquito Joe today to enjoy a bite-free yard! We have special services that add against ticks and other pests, so let us help you protect yourself and your family throughout the year.

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