The type of mosquitoes that can carry the Zika virus and other dangerous viruses has been found in Long Beach for the first time. The Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which are not native to California, were discovered in the northern part of the city, the Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services announced. This matters to the women we care for because Zika and pregnancy can mean serious problems, so it’s important for us to cover how to prevent the zika virus while pregnant.
Zika can be transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito, through sex, and from an infected pregnant mother to her fetus.
Most people do not develop serious symptoms but patients can experience fever, rash, headache, joint and muscle pain and red eyes. Mothers who get the virus while pregnant can have children with birth defects including microcephaly, in which babies’ heads and brains are much smaller than they should be.
California residents are advised to take precautions to reduce the chances of being bitten or allowing mosquitoes to breed on their property. More information is on the state health department’s website.
PROTECT YOURSELF AND YOUR FAMILY
- Drain standing water in and around your home.
- Use DEET when outside
- Wear long sleeves while outdoors
- Practice extra caution when traveling to areas with Zika
- Avoid unnecessary travel to areas with Zika if you are pregnant
- If you’ve recently returned from an area with Zika, avoid being bitten by mosquitoes for 3 weeks