May 28, 2013
OSWEGO - With summer soon upon us, the Oswego County Health Department reminds people to protect themselves against mosquito-borne diseases such as Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV).
"These viral infections can cause serious illness such as severe headache, high fever, disorientation, seizures, brain swelling or, in some cases, death," said Jiancheng Huang, public health director for the Oswego County Health Department. "The best protection from these viruses is to guard against mosquito bites."
Insect repellents that contain DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus are effective but should be used with care. Repellents containing permethrin are meant for clothing and gear and should not be applied directly to the skin. Also, repellents containing DEET should not be applied to skin under clothing. Read the product label and use according to package instructions.
Another protective measure against mosquito bites is to limit outdoor activities in areas where mosquitoes are most active and between dusk and dawn which is the peak mosquito biting time.
"It isn't always practical to keep away from the outdoors. If you have to be outside, wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, shoes and socks as weather permits," said Huang.
Other precautions people can take to minimize mosquito populations in and around their homes and properties are to repair or replace all window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside, and reduce or eliminate all standing water.
To learn more about protecting your family against mosquitoes, call the Oswego County Health Department at 315-349-3547 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3547, or visit the New York State Department of Health Web site at www.health.state.ny.us.
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