Use these tips to prevent infection from the mosquito-borne Zika virus!

The Zika disease is one that is a common threat for all this year. Since February of this year, there have been several reported infections and deaths, sparking debates of how best to stay protected.

The Zika disease symptoms include mild fever, skin rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise or headaches. This virus can be transmitted through mosquito bites, from a pregnant mother to child, and blood transfusion. As these symptoms can be confused with low immunity, it’s imperative to keep your child protected!

If you have a holiday lined up to visit a foreign destination with your children, be sure to take active precautions against being infected with such a virus:

  • Pick the right mosquito repellent.
    The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends products with active ingredients DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus, picaridin, or IR 3535. Choosing an EPA-registered repellent means that the EPA has evaluated the product for effectiveness. In short, find one of those repellents for the best protection.
  • Apply the mosquito repellent correctly.
    Bug spray should be applied after sunscreen as the SPF may mask the repellant. Don’t wear the spray under clothes as it won’t evaporate and may accumulate on the fabric. Never forget to spritz your child’s feet and ankles as these are common bite infection sites. Spray the repellent onto your hands before rubbing it into your child’s skin for a sensitive application.
  • Choose the right clothing.
    Fit your child with long trousers and long sleeved tops, covering exposed skin. Make an effort to cover the feet and ankles as best you can since Aedes mosquitos have an appetite for feet.
  • Travel smart.
    The best way to avoid Zika virus is to avoid affected areas. Check the CDC’s regularly updated list of countries and territories with active Zika virus transmission. If you must travel to an affected country, stay in air-conditioned areas, sleep under bed nets if your room may have mosquitoes, and use mosquito repellent often.

We hope that you and your children have a safe and happy summer! Fortunately, protecting your child comes easily to Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Conejo Valley. We aim to aid your children in developmental stages, all the while having safe and healthy fun! Call us to learn about our programs and summer camps to get your child involved!