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August 30, 2012
CDC is reporting over 693 cases of West Nile Virus in the U.S. so far this year. It may seem odd to have such a high incident rate with so few mosquitoes around and drought conditions throughout much of the nation. Most people associate rainfall with mosquitoes and certainly it is an important component since mosquitoes breed in water. However, certain mosquitoes can actually prosper in hot, dry weather. This includes the Culex mosquitoes which carry West Nile Virus. Here are some of the reasons why:
To better protect yourself from contracting West Nile, you should be wearing repellents containing active ingredients like DEET when in mosquito prone areas. People over 50 years of age are more likely to develop more serious complications from West Nile Virus versus their younger counterparts. Most people experience relatively mild symptoms from the disease but should still take precautions. It is estimated that 4 out of 5 people will develop no symptoms as a result of exposure.