For Floridians, mosquitoes are nothing new. In fact, since Florida temperatures are typically always above 50 degrees, mosquitoes are present in Florida year-round. We know one thing for certain, with the rainy and warmer season right around the corner, mosquitoes will be out in full swing.
These pesky nuisances aren’t just annoying, they can also carry transmittable viruses such as Zika, chikungunya, West Nile and Dengue. The risk of disease transmission through bites of infected mosquitoes to humans often increases during the warm, rainy months.
To protect against mosquitoes, the Florida Department of Health in Broward County recommends Floridians “Drain and Cover.”
“Everyone should be aware of mosquitoes and take steps to protect themselves,” says Dr. Paula Thaqi, Director of the Florida Department of Health in Broward County. “The best way to do that is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. We recommend a practice called Drain and Cover.”
Drain standing water in and around the house. Eliminate even puddles because Aedes can breed in containers as small as a bottle cap.
Get rid of water that collects in garbage cans, tires, buckets, roof gutters, pool covers, coolers, toys, flowerpots and plants with pockets, such as bromeliads. Discard items where rain or sprinkler water collects. Clean bird baths and pet water bowls twice a week.
Inside the home, mosquitoes can breed where water collects, such as refrigerator ice makers, electric toothbrush holders and drips under sinks.
Cover yourself and the openings in your home. If you go outdoors when mosquitoes are active, wear shoes, socks, long pants and long sleeves. Spray your skin and clothing with repellent containing DEET or other approved ingredients (check the label). Keep windows and doors closed, and repair damaged screening. Visit https://www.cdc.gov/mosquitoes/index.html for more information on protecting yourself and your family from mosquitoes.