When you think about them, the mosquito is such a little thing that doesn’t seem to be much of a threat. You barely see it or even feel it and you can go an entire day or week barely aware of having encountered one. In fact, they’re most commonly heard rather than seen because of the unique acoustic properties of their tiny little wings. Among the pests you can encounter, they have the dubious distinction of being able to affect over 100 million people annually.
Mosquito stings tend to be completely painless unlike that of hornets, wasps, or bees. They have very small and tiny “stingers” on the heads called proboscis that are designed more to extract blood rather than to cause harm. What makes mosquitoes dangerous is that these proboscis are what transmits dengue fever. This is a very painful, debilitating disease caused by dengue viruses.
The funny thing about dengue is that it can only be transmitted by mosquito bite—or, more specifically the virus in the blood of someone bitten by the same mosquito—so it stands to reason that there is truly no other culprit in its spread. Now, most cases of dengue fever in the United States occur in people who travel to areas where the disease is prevalent. Nonetheless, citizens in the Southern-most States are at particular risk. In fact, in 2009, an outbreak of dengue occurred in Key West, Florida.
Symptoms of dengue usually manifest 4 to 6 days after infection. These include sudden, high fever, severe headaches that may come with pain behind the eyes, terrible muscle and joint pain, dizziness, malaise, vomiting, rashes, and bleeding. The worst part is that the symptoms can be mistaken for the flu. Left unchecked and untreated for what it is, it can even lead to death in extreme cases.
Dealing with Mosquitoes
If undergoing those symptoms doesn’t seem particularly appealing to you, then the best solution is to nip the problem in the bud—by taking care of mosquitoes before they cause problems. There are a few simple ways to do that:
- Mosquitoes breed and thrive on stagnant bodies of water. Even puddles after a rainfall can breed a lot of them if left unchecked. So one preventive measure is to clean these up quickly to prevent them from being used as breeding grounds.
- If you do happen to live in areas where the climate tends to be wet and damp, then mosquitoes tend to be an unavoidable reality. A simple solution would be to install mesh on your windows and having a screen door installed in all entryways. This gives them less means of ingress into your home.
- Lastly, it is also a good idea to consult with pest control experts. They might charge you for it but you can bank on their experience in identifying breeding grounds as well as providing a more lasting, surer, and safer solution to mosquito problems.