Zika has been responsible for grave headlines and frightening images for around a year now — and it’s still active. The Centers for Disease Control report that, as of September 27, 2017, there have been 278 symptomatic cases of Zika reported within the U.S. and 556 within U.S. territories. Though that’s a massive reduction from 2016’s 5,102 cases, as long as the disease is out there, it can make a comeback. Here’s what you need to know about it.
Zika Prevalent in the Southern Hemisphere
The United States has issued travel warnings for most of Central and South America, The Caribbean, Pacific Islands, Central Africa, and Southeast Asia. The virus originated in Uganda in 1947, and achieved its first major outbreak in the Yap Island in Polynesia. It infected 75% of the population. It’s also been suspected that the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil helped spread the virus.
Zika Spreads through Mosquitoes & Sexual Transmission
Zika first spread to humans from monkeys via mosquito. The mosquito Ades aegypti carries the virus in its saliva which, upon biting humans, can infiltrate the bloodstream, allowing the virus to spread. In 2016, sexual transmission of Zika had been reported in Argentina, Chile, France, Italy, New Zealand, and the United States.
Severe Symptoms in Pregnant Women
Many Zika will only experience mild symptoms. These might include fever, rash, headache, joint and muscle pain, and redness of the eyes — they might last a week. Coupled with its sexual transmissibility, Zika’s ability to go unnoticed poses even greater danger to pregnant women. Babies carried by Zika-infected women have a much higher chance of being born with a range of severe birth defects.
Mosquito Control Can Help Prevent Zika
According to the CDC, one way to prevent Zika is through mosquito control. The best form of mosquito control for your home goes beyond applying bug spray to your body — it needs to eliminate the mosquito presence and keep it away.
Ades aegypti is shown to be spreading north — but Massachusetts residents can turn to Mosquito Shield of South Shore, Cape Cod & South Coast for mosquito control services. Their patented three-prong method masks the CO2 they’re attracted to, and applies a barrier to repel them from any attractive areas. To learn more, call them at (781) 424-5697 or visit their website.