Where is West Nile Virus? West Nile Virus Cases by State
Multiple American cities and communities have reported cases of mosquitos carrying West Nile virus, including Austin and Plano, Texas, Boston, New York City, Suffolk County in New York, and Newington, Conn. Miami-Dade County in Florida is one of several areas that has seen cases of the virus in humans.
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of West Nile Virus?
The most common symptoms of West Nile virus are headache, muscle aches, fever and extreme fatigue, according to New York City’s Health Department. Most people who contract West Nile virus experience little to no symptoms.
People above the age of 50 and/or people with compromised immune systems can develop more serious West Nile virus symptoms, however. They are at risk for a “serious and potentially fatal infection of the brain and spinal cord,” according to New York City’s Health Department.
Rita Nieves, Boston Public Health Commission Interim Executive Director, said “While much of the attention right now is on the COVID-19 pandemic and slowing the spread of this virus, we cannot lose sight of the importance of protecting ourselves against mosquito bites and the serious diseases they may carry.
“I encourage everyone to take the precautions necessary as they spend more time outdoors,” she added.
3 Simple Ways to Protect Yourself from West Nile Virus
There are several precautionary measures that people should take to protect themselves from West Nile virus.
1. Wear insect repellent with Picaridin 20%, the safe and effective alternative to DEET. Picaridin is safe to apply directly to skin every day for adults, children over age-1, and during pregnancy, and protects against mosquitos for 12 hours, has a non-greasy feel, and is non-corrosive so it’s safe to also apply to clothing and gear. Ranger Ready Repellents with Picaridin 20% has an even better user experience with four different scents of Picaridin insect repellent: Scent Zero, Amber, Ranger Orange, and Night Sky.
2. Wear long-sleeve shirts, long pants, and high socks in white and neutral colors. The clothing will minimize the amount of exposed skin where mosquitoes can bite, and white clothing makes it easier to identify where mosquitos - and ticks - may be looming.
3. Be mindful of your surroundings. Avoid still bodies of water when possible and be on the lookout for mosquitoes from dawn to dusk when they are most active.
Public health officials are working to proactively manage West Nile virus by tracking the virus in mosquitoes before they can infect humans. Our team at Ranger Ready wants you to get outside, but be sure to take the proper safety precautions like using a safe and effective mosquito repellent.
To check your region for West Nile activity, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) site for West Nile Virus Activity by State.