As mentioned in a previous article, the Zika virus is a dangerous virus that is spread primarily through mosquito bites and bodily fluid contact. Due to the summer starting soon, there have been some maps created to forecast where the virus will strike the most, and where the mosquitoes that carry that virus are the thickest. A map by NASA has predicted that the south and the coasts will be struck the hardest by the mosquitos/virus. This is because of the humid and warm temperatures along these areas. Based on their map, Ohio and many northern states will not be badly effected, with the middle ground being around Tennessee and Mississippi. South of those states the mosquito population will be plentiful and aggressive A couple things you can do to stay safe is:
- Buy a bug repellant- Liquid bug spray can be put on skin and on items such as clothes and backpacks to repel the mosquitos. There are also alternatives to spray, such as bracelets and clips which can be put on the clothes or a backpack. These devices are safer for kids who may be putting their hands in their mouths after touching bug spray. Citronella candles are also effective for large events outside, due to the smoke from the candle keeping the bugs farther away than spray would.
- Sleep in a tent when camping- Camping is a huge summer activity, and sleeping under the stars is very popular among campers. Due to the situation, you should camp in a tent with screens in order to stay safe if your not wearing bug spray. If you put bug spray on the sleeping bag, that would help to keep the mosquitos away.
- Clothes- Wearing longer clothes such as a light long sleeve shirt or jeans may be better on days where the mosquitos are the strongest. It may not be comfortable, but its better to take precautions.
- Try to avoid cologne or scented sprays- Scented sprays often times draw in mosquitoes so avoiding them would be helpful. This isn’t true for all scents, so when you use a scented spray avoid it if mosquitos seem drawn to it.
Below are two links, one is to the virus map by NASA and the other is to Sawyer. The virus map is great to get a visualization of the virus spread and the link to Sawyer is great to purchase some quality bug spray. In the next several months we will be doing some reviews on Sawyer products, including bug sprays!
NASA Virus Map
Sawyer Bug Spray