Tri-County Health Department (TCHD) has confirmed the first West Nile virus-infected mosquito in Brighton this year. There are no human cases reported in the region so far. Birds can carry the virus long distances, and the mosquitoes that bite these birds can then infect a human.
“This first positive mosquito is a good reminder for people to protect themselves from mosquito bites and to eliminate mosquito breeding areas around their home,” states John M. Douglas, Jr. MD, Executive Director of TCHD. “Everyone should take precautions since West Nile virus is preventable by protecting yourself against mosquito bites. You can do this by avoiding outdoor exposure when mosquitoes are active, wearing protective clothing, and applying insect repellent whenever you are outdoors—whether in the backwoods or in your own back yard.”
West Nile Virus Prevention Tips:
- Eliminate standing water in rain gutters, old tires, buckets, plastic covers, toys, or any other container of water where mosquitoes can breed
- Stay inside at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active or avoid mosquito bites if outside
- Keep mosquitoes away from exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, shoes and socks
- Use an EPA-registered mosquito repellent
- Mosquito-proof your home by repairing screens on windows and doors
The City of Brighton annually contracts with Vector Disease Control International to provide mosquito control in Brighton. The Program includes monitoring and placing Larvicide in standing water ponds and setting up traps throughout the City to monitor mosquito populations and test for the existence of West Nile virus. Once the population reached a certain threshold they will fog the neighborhood. For more information, visit https://www.brightonco.gov/823/Mosquito-Control.
Most people who are infected with WNV will not become ill. About 1 in 5 people who are infected develop a fever with other symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Most people with this type of WNV disease recover completely, but fatigue and weakness can last for weeks or months.
About 1 in 150 people who are infected develop a severe illness affecting the central nervous system, with complications including encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord), and in rare cases, death.
For more information visit www.tchd.org/276/Mosquitoes-West-Nile-Virus and www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/west-nile-virus.