West Nile Virus Prevention for Your Family
Are you concerned about protecting your family from West Nile virus? The thought of anyone in your family contracting an illness from an infected mosquito may be enough to make your shelter inside, especially if the virus has been identified in your area. Don’t let worry about the West Nile virus keep you and your family members from spending quality time together outside.
To prevent West Nile virus transmission, Mosquito Joe has prepared some tips so you can combat the mosquitoes in your yard and take the proper steps to make your property an itch-free zone.
How to Prevent Getting West Nile Virus
Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for West Nile virus, so the number-one way to prevent virus transmission is to stop mosquito bites in the first place.
Here’s what you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones:
1. Use an effective mosquito repellent product.
Look for insect repellant products registered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Products containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), and 2-undecanone have been proven to repel mosquitoes and other biting insects. These products are an effective solution for everyone, even women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. However, these repellents are not recommended for young children. Always read product labels and check the EPA site for product safety and effectiveness.
2. Wear long sleeves and pants.
Covering as much skin as possible is a good way to keep mosquito bites away. Neutral-colored, loose-fitting clothing is best. Avoid bright colors or flower patterns that can attract mosquito attention, as well as tight clothes, which can make it easier for the mosquito to penetrate through the clothing to the skin. Tuck pants into socks and consider wearing a hat for additional protection.
3. Treat clothing with permethrin.
Permethrin is a common mosquito control product that can be sprayed on clothing and shoes. The product is irritating to mosquitoes which keeps them from landing and biting, and can even kill them on contact. The product can be sprayed on all clothing, or you can purchase clothing that has been pre-treated with permethrin. However, do not apply the spray directly to the skin. Read the product label to determine how long the pesticide protection will last.
4. Avoid going outside at dusk and dawn.
Dusk and dawn are when mosquitoes are the most prevalent. If possible, avoid going outside during these times. Another time to stay inside is immediately following a rainfall, when mosquitoes may be hanging out near standing water in and around your yard.
5. Avoid and prevent mosquito high-traffic zones.
In addition to steering clear of stagnant pools of water like puddles, birdbaths, and clogged, water-filled gutters, it’s a good idea to avoid areas including garbage cans, flowerbeds, piles of leaves, shrubbery, orchards, and wooded areas—all tend to be high-traffic areas for mosquitoes.
You can also take these steps to make your property less attractive to the biting pests:
- Empty standing or stagnant water around the property on a regular basis.
- Keep your lawn and shrubbery trimmed and tidy so mosquitoes have fewer places to lurk and rest.
- Stay on top of gutter maintenance to avoid dirty gutters with stagnant water accumulation.
- Repair leaky outdoor faucets and store garden hoses properly.
6. Additional steps to protect children.
Not every insect repellent that’s approved for adults should be used for infants and young children. Always read product labels and check the EPA list for registered insect repellents to determine which products are right for your child. Do not use products that contain oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or para-menthane-diol (PMD) on children younger than three years old.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), insect repellent use on infants under two months old is not recommended.
Whether your child is too young for insect repellants, or you would like to find alternatives, here are other and West Nile virus:
- Cover baby carriers and strollers with protective netting.
- Clothe baby head-to-toe in loose-fitting, neutral-colored clothing; include a hat to protect head and ears from bites and shoes or socks to protect feet.
- Avoid the use of strongly scented soaps, lotions, hair products, and perfumes.
- Keep the baby inside as much as possible if your yard does not have proper mosquito control.
West Nile Prevention for Your Property
Many homeowners find the most effective way to prevent West Nile virus transmission on their property is to eradicate mosquitoes. No mosquitoes mean no mosquito bites. And no mosquito bites means no West Nile virus.
Ready to reclaim your yard from the threat of biting mosquitoes and worries about mosquito-borne illnesses? Let your local Mosquito Joe team apply the effective barrier treatments that will keep mosquitoes away for up to three weeks. No more swatting, worrying and scratching. Your family can have peace of mind while you enjoy bite-free time together outside. Call the friendly, knowledgeable pros at Mosquito Joe today at 1-855-275-2563 or contact us online to take back control of your yard this season.
Keeping your window screens in great shape is a good way to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home. Consider window screen repair or replacement services from Glass Doctor®, another member of the Neighborly® family of trusted home service brands.