The World Health Organization has declared the Zika virus an international public health emergency, affecting 24 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
With no vaccine and treatments unreliable, health experts say we should all take precautions to lower risks — particularly women of child-bearing age and those who travel to regions of the world where the virus poses a grave threat.
Joe Conlon, technical advisor for the American Mosquito Control Association (AMCA), a retired U.S. Navy entomologist and renowned expert in mosquito control, predicts the Zika epidemic will likely reach the U.S. His expertise has been recognized worldwide and he’s made two appearances before the U.S. Congress providing testimony on the West Nile Virus.
Conlon recommends wearing permethrin-treated clothing such as Insect Shield, which provides protection from mosquito bites that lasts through 70 washings. In response to the Zika virus, Insect Shield has a developed a program for travelers planning trips to Zika-risk areas to get their own clothing treated. And always use topical repellent on exposed skin.
Insect Shield clothing is EPA-registered and appropriate for use by the entire family. Click here for more information about Insect Shield Clothing.
The virus, which is transmitted by the Aedes mosquito, was first discovered in 1947 in Uganda and lived mostly in monkeys. Conlon says that Aedes mosquitoes are aggressive daytime biters and typically lay their eggs in and near standing water like buckets, bowls and animal dishes.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.