Mosquitoes are a continuous problem throughout the country. Each year mosquitoes spread many different diseases like West Nile fever, the Zika virus and malaria. Mosquitoes have been the known start and spread epidemics of serious diseases. In Virginia mosquito season officially starts May 1st, but the mosquitoes will not wait for that date. There are steps that you can take to protect you and your family from mosquitoes.
Wear Insect Repellent
One of the best defenses against mosquito bites is insect repellent. Insect repellent that contains DEET as an active ingredient is the best option. Another option is to find an insect repellent with the active ingredient picaridin. These options will help stop mosquitoes from biting you and protect you from the complications can come with mosquito-borne illness. If you are pregnant, you may be concerned about using repellents, but they are safe for you to use and better than the complications that can arise if you do contract something like the Zika virus.
Avoid Being Outside During Peak Mosquito Activity
Mosquitoes are the most active at dawn and at dusk. Many people enjoy spending time outside during this time since it is cooler than the middle of the day. If you are spending time outside when mosquitoes are more active, it is important to wear bug spray and take other steps to protect yourself like wearing lighter colors and possibly installing a fan in the area that you will be.
Address Standing Water
According to Fairfax County, the Asian Tiger mosquito is responsible to spreading both the West Nile virus and the Zika virus. This mosquito likes to breed in containers instead of water that has dirt in it. The best protection against this mosquito is to make sure you are not giving it a place to breed on your property.
- Check to make sure that you do not have containers or gardening tools that may collect water.
- You should empty your bird baths each week to stop mosquitoes from breeding.
- Fix the drainage in your yard so that it dries out completely.
- It is also important to make sure that you empty and scrub out your vases inside your home.
Use Plants to Repel Mosquitoes
Certain plants are natural mosquito repellents. If you plant them around the areas where you spend most of your time, you may be able to reduce the number of mosquito bites that you have. Planting them around the perimeter of your garden or your patio is a good option. You can also have them in containers around your deck. Some good options include geraniums, lavender, marigolds and citronella. These options are both pretty and effective.
Consider a Mosquito Control Treatment
Another option is to consider treating your yard for mosquitoes. A professional technician can apply a mosquito barrier spray around your yard that will eliminate adult mosquitoes and stop new ones from entering your yard. If you do this you can send your children out to play in the summer without worrying about applying bug spray.