For Hometown News
TREASURE COAST -
Due to recent floodwaters, Florida Department of Health officials are emphasizing the importance of residents and visitors protecting themselves against mosquito-borne diseases.
To prevent mosquitoes from living and multiplying around homes or businesses:
.Drain water from garbage cans, buckets, pool covers, coolers, toys, flowerpots or any other containers where sprinkler or rainwater has collected.
.Discard old tires, drums, bottles, cans, pots and pans, broken appliances and other items that aren't being used.
.Empty and clean birdbaths and pet's water bowls at least once or twice a week.
.Protect boats and vehicles from rain with tarps that don't accumulate water.
.Maintain swimming pools in good condition and appropriately chlorinated. Empty plastic swimming pools when not in use.
.Clothing - Those who must be outside when mosquitoes are active should cover up. Wear shoes, socks, long pants and long sleeves.
.Repellant - Apply mosquito repellent to bare skin and clothing. Always use repellents according to the label. Repellents with 10-30 percent DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, and IR3535 are effective.
.Use mosquito netting to protect children younger than two months old.
.Keep mosquitoes out of your house. Repair broken screening on windows, doors, porches, and patios.
Symptoms of West Nile virus infection may include headache, fever, fatigue, dizziness, weakness and confusion.
DOH continues to conduct statewide surveillance for mosquito-borne illnesses, including West Nile virus infections, Eastern equine encephalitis, St. Louis encephalitis, malaria and dengue.
For more information on mosquito-borne illnesses, visit www.doh.state.fl.us/Environment/medicine/arboviral/index.html.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission maintains a Web site for reporting wild bird die offs related to West Nile virus. To report a dead bird, visit www.MyFWC.com/bird.
For more information, visit www.doh.state.fl.us or www.FloridaDisaster.org or call (800) 342-3557.