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Chesprocott Health District announces that mosquitos trapped on July 16 in East Haven have tested positive for carrying the West Nile Virus. The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station tests weekly over 90 trapping stations located all throughout Connecticut and one of those trapping stations is located in Cheshire, which is one of the three towns the Health District covers. The mosquitos that typically carry this virus start to become active this time of year and continue through September. Here are some tips to reduce your risk of being bitten by these mosquitos:
*Minimize time spent outside between dusk and dawn, when mosquitos are most active
*Be sure door and window screens are tight fitting and in good repair
*Wear shoes, socks, long pants, and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods or when the mosquitos are most active. *Clothing should be light colored and made of tightly-woven materials that keep mosquitos away from the skin
*Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in an unscreened structure and to protect small babies when outdoors.
*Consider the use of mosquito repellent, according to directions, when it is necessary to be outdoors.
Last year four human cases were reported in Connecticut. The CDC reports that while most people (70-80 percent) who become infected with West Nile virus do not develop any symptoms, about 1 in 5 people who do become infected will develop a fever accompanied with other symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Most people who become infected will recover completely, but fatigue and weakness can last for weeks or months. Less than one percent of those who become infected will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis which is the inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues.