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Summer Months in the US Ring Alarms Over Mosquito-Borne Illnesses

US Ring Alarms Over Mosquito-Borne Illnesses

United States: Summer months are all about mosquitoes and flies, which result in various kind of illnesses and raises the public health concern. 

The worries have increased once again as approximately 80 percent of the West Nile virus-infected people do not show any specific symptoms related to the disease. According to the experts, this tendency of the virus makes it more deadly and contagious

It is to be added that the concerns and worries are high because Kern County of the US reported around 15 cases of West Nile Virus and two (2) cases of St Louis Encephalitis Virus in 2023, and the health officials have anticipated that this year the cases can see a hike, according to the reports by bakersfieldnow.com. 

What are the common symptoms that must be looked at? 

Fever

Vomiting

Nausea, and 

Diarrhea

While addressing this emerging concern, Kern County Public Health – Michelle Corson stated, “If you’re feeling these symptoms, and they are not resolving on their own, we would recommend you talk to your doctor.”

Along with this, the health experts also explained the basic breeding grounds for mosquitos, including the residential backyard, unmaintained swimming pools and many more. The experts also noted that the general public must make sure that pools and water containing items must be clean and chlorinated, as reported by bakersfieldnow.com. 

Besides this, the public information officer for Kern Mosquito and Vector Control District – Terry Knight, stated, “It is up to the public to do their part to get rid of these strong water sources that are creating such a large problem.”

How exactly are West Nile Virus and St Louis Encephalitis (SLE) Virus?

West Nile Virus: 

The West Nile virus (WNV) reigns supreme as the foremost culprit within the continental expanse of the United States. Its transmission primarily occurs through the ministrations of an infected mosquito’s bite. The incidence of WNV manifests during the mosquito season, commencing its ominous cycle in the heat of summer and persisting into the fall’s embrace. Alas, there exists no panacea in the form of vaccines or pharmaceuticals to stave off or mitigate the effects of WNV in afflicted individuals, the CDC explained.  

Mercifully, the majority of those ensnared by WNV’s grasp remain blissfully asymptomatic. Yet, approximately one-fifth of the infected populace succumbed to the onset of fever and associated maladies. Moreover, a sinister fraction, constituting roughly one in every 150 infected individuals, confronts the specter of a severe, potentially fatal affliction. Mitigating the risk of WNV’s encroachment necessitates the judicious application of insect repellents alongside the donning of garments with ample coverage—long-sleeved attire and trousers—to repel the insidious advances of mosquitoes.

St Louis Encephalitis (SLE) Virus:

The St Louis encephalitis (SLE) virus is a lethal stealth assassin that made its capital in mosquito bodies, birthing it off their bloody crusades. Hence, the overwhelming majority of these people, infected by the slender thread of the SLE viral disease, travel through the labyrinth of illness displaying no overt symptoms. Despite that uplifting reputation, it is disheartening to see that an unfortunate few may experience an array of health problems- fever, headache, vomiting, and the feeling of languishing. 

The CDC also reports that among the overwhelmed, there may be some who become trapped in a brain throng of bright lights that cause inflammation of the cerebral tissues (encephalitis) and others that cover the brain and the spinal cord (meningitis). In rare instances, the weight of these issues can be the life or death of an individual, which may then translate to eternal trauma or, perhaps the ultimate, expecting death. Regretfully, in the form of vaccines or medicines, no preventive or curative mechanisms are currently available, similar to WNV, to either defeat or mitigate the kind of SLE. Therefore, for any effort to thwart affliction, one has to be cautious in the safeguard of their health, and as such, the precautionary measures include the appropriate use of insect repellents, wearing of clothing to encase one in, and the management of the mosquitoes, both in the home premises and out in public.

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