Everything You Should Know About Mosquitoes
November 22, 2019
One of the reasons mosquito-borne diseases are such a threat is that most people only know half of the story. Take Zika, for instance. In the news, there has been a lot of focus on Zika’s ability to cause microcephaly – and for good reason; microcephaly is a scary threat that can lead to a medical condition that alters the life of an entire family. The Zika virus can also cause other illnesses, such as Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) – a sickness of the nervous system that can cause damage to nerve cells and inspire muscle weakness and sometimes paralysis. All it takes is one bite from a mosquito that has bitten a carrier of Zika. People travel in and out all the time; when they go to South America and regions where Zika is a serious threat, they are one plane trip away from bringing an outbreak to the United States. While there are many precautions in place to protect us, any resident can be at ground zero of an outbreak.
Most of the time, we get sick with flu-like symptoms and don’t realize that it was mosquitoes that made us ill. These symptoms can be bad enough to send us to the hospital. It is important to know that headaches, muscle aches, fever, nausea, and other flu-like symptoms can be symptoms of the West Nile virus or some other form of encephalitis virus. They may also be symptoms of dengue fever, yellow fever, Chikungunya, malaria, and more. People get sick from mosquito-borne viruses all the time without realizing it.
how mosquitoes can impact your dogs & cats
Mosquitoes don’t just make us sick; they make our pets sick. One of the most prolific mosquito-borne diseases that have an impact on pets is dog heartworm. Heartworm is a parasitic disease that can result in severe lung disease, heart failure, and organ damage. It doesn’t just impact dogs either. Your cat can get sick with dog heartworm as well. This parasitic worm, known as Dirofilaria immitis, is most common in the states around the Gulf of Mexico and up as far as New Jersey.