The Zika virus has circulated in the news since 2013 and isn’t losing steam. In fact, more cases of infections have been reported throughout the United States over the past four years, including in the city of Brownsville, Texas, in 2016. It’s the first report of a local mosquito-borne Zika case in the state. Though Austin sits more than 300 miles away, the Zika virus should concern everyone in the area.

What is the Zika Virus?

Mosquitoes are responsible for originally spreading the Zika virus to people. It’s transmitted by daytime mosquitoes but can also be spread through bites at night. When it infects a person, the symptoms include everything from headaches and fatigue to pink eye. If it infects pregnant women, the Zika virus can reach the fetus and cause birth defects.

How to Avoid the Zika Virus

Because there’s no vaccine or medication for the disease, it’s important to protect yourself from mosquito bites, to avoid traveling to infected areas and to learn about the signs and the symptoms of the disease. Although the virus is spread by mosquitoes, infected people can also spread it to others through:

  • Blood transfusions
  • Laboratory exposure
  • Sex

Researchershave found that the virus may remain in the system long after the symptoms have disappeared. It’s also possible that previously infected people may not be able to contract the virus again.

Should Austin Residents Be Worried?

The Aedes species, the mosquitoes that are responsible for spreading the Zika virus, live and thrive in Texas. At one time, this species wasn’t transmitting the virus to residents in the state. As of 2016, that has changed. Because of the recent update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we’re likely to see more cases of infections in the state as the spring and the summer months arrive in Texas.

Prevent Mosquitoes With Professional Pest Control

If you want to take a preventative approach to mosquito control, look no further than MosquitoNix of Austin. Our unique and effective mosquito misting systems provide up to a 99 percent reduction of mosquitoes in the target area. It eliminates infestations, dramatically reduces their numbers and drives roaming mosquitoes away from your yard. MosquitoNix not only stops infestations but also helps to prevent the spread of the Zika virus and other harmful mosquito-borne diseases.