TAZEWELL COUNTY, Ill. (WMBD)– Tazewell County is reporting the first mosquito with West Nile Virus was found on Monday.
A Tazewell County Health Dept. news release confirms the virus was found in a mosquito pool in mid-August.
“West Nile virus can cause serious illness in some people. It is important to take precautions to prevent mosquito bites, like wearing insect repellent and getting rid of stagnant water around your home,” said TCHD Environmental Health Director, Melissa Goetze. “It is important to remember that no matter what season it is, there is an ongoing risk of disease from a mosquito bite after it feeds on an infected bird.”
Common symptoms of West Nile Virus include fever, nausea, headache, and muscle aches. In rare cases, meningitis or death can occur. This is especially true for older people or those with weakened immune systems.
Precautions against West Nile Virus can be found below:
- REDUCE – make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have tears or other openings. Try to keep doors and windows shut. Eliminate, or refresh each week, all sources of standing water where mosquitoes can breed, including water in bird baths, ponds, flowerpots, wading pools, old tires, and any other containers.
- REPEL – when outdoors, wear shoes and socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt, and apply insect repellent that contains DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR 3535 according to label instructions. Consult a physician before using repellents on infants.
- REPORT – report locations where you see water sitting stagnant for more than a week such as roadside ditches, flooded yards, and similar locations that may produce mosquitoes. The local health department or city government may be able to add larvicide to the water, which will kill any mosquito larvae.