Mosquitoes can spread pathogens (germs) through bites. A person who gets bitten by a mosquito and gets sick has a mosquito-borne disease, like West Nile virus, dengue, or malaria.
Mosquito Bites Can Be Deadly
Be Prepared Before Mosquito Borne Disease Season Begins!
The Department of Public Health is urging residents to prevent mosquito breeding and avoid mosquito bites in order to avoid disease.
Certain individuals are at higher risk of developing serious illnesses from the mosquito-borne West Nile Virus such as the elderly and those with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and people who have received organ transplants.
Other mosquito-borne diseases that have yet to present local cases, but threaten our community’s health include Zika, Chikungunya and Dengue. All can have devastating effects on those who are infected. At present there is no scientific evidence to suggest mosquitoes spread COVID-19.
El Pasoans can also help ‘fight the bite’ by using these prevention methods:
- DEET – Use insect repellents that contain DEET when outdoors.
- DRESS – Wear long sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors.
- DUSK & DAWN – Although mosquitoes associated with Zika can be active throughout the day, residents should take extra care during peak mosquito biting hours (from dusk to dawn) or consider avoiding outdoor activities during these times.
- DRAIN – Drain standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, and birdbaths. After rains or lawn watering, residents are asked to “tip and toss” any standing water they find outside.
Residents can report mosquito breeding and standing water by calling 3-1-1.
Tips for Reducing Mosquitoes Around Homes
- Mosquitoes require water for reproduction. The following are measures that can help reduce mosquitoes.
- Eliminate standing water suitable for mosquitoes. Dispose of water-holding containers, such as ceramic pots, used tires, and tire swings.
- Drill holes in the bottom of containers such as those used for recycling.
- Clean clogged roof gutters.
- Turn over objects that may trap water when not in use, such as wading pools and wheelbarrows.
- Change water in birdbaths on a weekly basis.
- Clean and chlorinate swimming pools. When pools are not in use, use pool covers and drain when necessary.
- What You Need to Know About Indoor Spraying / Fumigación para Mosquitos en Espacios Interiores
Tips for Avoiding Mosquito Bites When Outdoors
- Mosquitoes require a blood meal for reproduction. The following are measures that can help reduce bites from mosquitoes that feed on people:
- Minimize outdoor activities at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
- Wear shoes, socks, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts. Clothing material should be tightly woven and loose-fitting.
- Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors.
- Consider the use of CDC-recommended mosquito repellents containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, IR3535, or 2-undecanone, and apply according to directions when it is necessary to be outdoors.
- When using DEET, use the lowest concentration effective for the time spent outdoors (for example, 6 percent lasts approximately two hours and 20 percent for four hours) and wash treated skin when returning indoors. Do not apply under clothing, to wounds or irritated skin, the hands of children, or to infants less than two months old.
- Be sure door and window screens are tight-fitting and in good repair to avoid mosquito bites when indoors.