Ann Zaniewski Detroit Free Press
Published 5:47 PM EDT Jun 14, 2019
Health officials in Oakland County are urging residents to take precautions against West Nile virus after it was recently found in a sample of mosquitoes in Pontiac.
Residents should use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellent, wear protective clothing such as long-sleeved shirts and pants, and maintain window and door screens to keep mosquitoes out of buildings, officials said. It’s also a good idea to avoid outdoor activity at dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are the most active.
People can help reduce mosquito breeding sites by removing standing water from areas around their homes.
The discovery in Pontiac is the first positive sample in Oakland County so far this season. There have been no human cases.
More: Detroit ranks No. 7 in the nation for mosquitoes
Most people who are infected with West Nile virus have either no symptoms or experience a mild illness such as a fever, headache and body aches.
However, some people can develop a severe illness that affects the central nervous system, such as encephalitis or meningitis. People 50 and older are more likely to develop serious and potentially life-threatening symptoms.
West Nile virus is the leading cause of mosquito-borne disease in the continental U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For more information, go to oakgov.com/health or follow @publichealthOC on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
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Contact Ann Zaniewski: 313-222-6504 or [email protected] Follow her on Twitter: @AnnZaniewski.