Friday, August 31, 2012
Eastern Ontario Health Unit
EOHU Reminds Residents to Continue Taking Precautions Against West Nile Virus
Residents should continue taking precautions to reduce their risk of contracting West Nile virus as the number of mosquitoes with the virus, as well as probable and confirmed human cases, is on the rise across Ontario. Although there have been no human cases or mosquitoes that have tested positive for the virus in the five Eastern Counties so far this year, the risk of becoming infected can last until the first hard frost in late September or October.
The EOHU recommends taking the following precautions:
- Use federally registered personal insect repellents, such as those containing DEET. Use a light coating on exposed skin. Follow label instructions for proper application.
- Wear light-coloured clothing, long sleeves, pants and socks when outside.
- Avoid being outside at dusk and dawn, as mosquitoes are the most active at that time.
- Ensure that all containers in or around the yard like tires, pool covers, saucers for flowerpots, wading pools and children’s toys are regularly emptied of standing water.
- Ensure that screens, windows and doors are fully sealed to prevent mosquitoes from entering the house.
Most people who contract West Nile virus will not exhibit any symptoms or may experience mild illness including fever, headache, body ache, nausea, vomiting and rash on the chest, stomach or back. More serious symptoms can include muscle weakness, stiff neck, confusion, tremors, numbness and sudden sensitivity to light. Symptoms usually develop between two to 15 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito.
For more information, click here. You can also visit the West Nile virus section of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care's website.