West Nile Virus Is On The Rise in South Carolina

mosquito on skin

It’s hot and boy has it been wet around Greenville lately. It’s the perfect storm for mosquito populations to grow exponentially. Of course, we know that where there is a chance for excessive mosquito populations the chance of elevated cases of disease is possible too. West Nile is a virus that we know is present in South Carolina. And last year, we really began to see the number of West Nile cases in the mosquito population grow. View the South Carolina mosquito-borne disease by year page to understand the trends. Notice the difference in West Nile from 2016 to 2017. Just in Greenville County we went from ZERO positive mosquito pools to 14!!

Late June and early July the first instances will show up in Mosquitoes and by the end of July, the first human cases will occur.

The West Nile Virus

Mosquitoes contract West Nile from infected birds and then most people get it from a mosquito bite. It is possible to transfer West Nile from human to human through blood transfusions, organ donations, breastfeeding, and pregnancy. 80% of people will never even know that they have West Nile, but 1 in about 5 will become symptomatic. These symptoms include rash, body aches, joint pain, vomiting, headache, and diarrhea. Less than 1% will develop serious complications such as encephalitis or meningitis and 10% of those people will die. There is no vaccine, specific treatment, or cure for West Nile Virus, only the symptoms can be treated.

Report and Protect

The only way to be sure you are avoiding West Nile is to avoid the mosquito bites, however, you can help the State track it’s movement and its saturation. You can do this by reporting dead birds to the Department of Health. If you come across freshly dead crows, Blue jays, House Finches, and House Sparrows between the months of March and November and can deliver them to DHEC. This helps in knowing where West Nile is present. By recognizing the virus’ presence, local government is able to make the best decisions when it comes to mosquito control for the area.

Now is the most important time of year to protect yourself from mosquitoes. When you are out in spaces that you can’t control be sure to wear FDA approved insect repellent. We suggest the ones that contain DEET as it is proven to work the best. Mosquitoes like to be out at dusk and dawn so if you can be indoors during the hours of higher activity that makes it easier to avoid bites as well. If you are in truly deeply infested areas you may want to consider covering as much of your body with clothing or even netting that you can. But what about at home? This is where you want to be able to relax and enjoy without all the sprays and excess clothing, leaving the worry at the end of the driveway. Mosquito Squad of Greenville understands the dangers of West Nile Virus and wants to help in your protection plan. Professional mosquito mist takes the work and mess out of protection. We live in an area where mosquitoes can stay with us right up to the holiday season and there is simply not enough time to be worried about sickness too. Let us help with that. Call Mosquito Squad of Greenville at (864) 362-2013 today!