Mosquitoes and the Zika Virus

Mosquitoes & Zika VirusMosquitoes have killed more humans than all the wars in history combined. That’s a sobering fact that leaves many people involuntarily swatting at their arms and legs. Recent reports of the spreading Zika virus have caused even more concern, especially for pregnant women who appear to be at the greatest risk. If you’re wondering what you can do to limit your risk of contracting this latest mosquito virus, learn the facts behind Zika.
What Are the Risks?
For most healthy people, the Zika virus causes only a brief, flu-like illness. For pregnant women, however, the risks are greater. Zika has been linked to an alarming birth defect called microcephaly, which results in debilitating small brain and head sizes. According to the World Health Organization, the rising prevalence of Zika-related microcephaly is now an international public health emergency. Recent reports that the virus can be transmitted through sexual activity have elevated concern. That said, for most Americans, the threat still appears to be quite low.
What You Can Do
Currently, Zika has yet to reach the continental United States. For people traveling outside the country, however, special precautions may be necessary. The CDC has issued a travel alert with a list of 32 countries or territories where Zika is prevalent. The national public health institute has also issued the following guidelines for people planning to travel abroad:

  • Pregnant women should consider delaying travel to areas on the CDC’s travel alert list.
  • Women trying to conceive should talk to their doctor before traveling to these areas.
  • Men with expecting partners should consider wearing a condom if they’ve recently traveled to any affected areas.

When You Must Travel
If you must travel in affected areas, take precautions to reduce your risk of mosquito bites. Wear long sleeves and pants and apply insect repellent containing DEET, IR3535, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol products. You should also keep windows closed and empty all standing water if possible.
When You Get Home
If you are an otherwise healthy traveler who has returned home, there’s no need to visit your doctor unless you develop headache, fever, rash, muscle or joint pain. On the other hand, pregnant women should schedule a checkup upon returning from any area on the CDC’s Zika watch list.

Health News + Events

What to Expect With COVID-19 & Back-to-School Protocols

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States in early 2020, it turned life upside down for more than 50 million school-age children across the country. In fact, according to Ed  Read More

TikTok Health Hacks: Safe or Sham?

No matter your preferred social media channel, you’ve likely seen viral health hacks for everything from congestion to snoring to weight loss. We turned to our team of certified  Read More

How to Treat a Dog Bite

Dogs are undoubtedly man’s best friend, but even the friendliest of creatures can sometimes get spooked or display aggressive behavior. Bites can even happen when giving an excit  Read More

What Our Patients Are Saying

Rating 4.6
Rating 4.2
Rating 4.6
Rating 5.0

"The overall care I received was excellent! I also appreciate your affiliation with Yale New Haven Hospital."

Derby, CT

"Throughout the visit I felt like the staff really cared. The Doctor took his time talking with me about my symptoms, and I felt like he listened to all my concerns and took that into consideration when recommending the right treatment. Thank you!"

Hamden, CT

"I had to take my son in for an ear infection following a sudden change in temperament at daycare. He was inconsolable the entire car ride but when we got there and by the time we left this care facility he was back to his normal happy go lucky little two year old boy. I highly recommend PhysicianOne Urgent Care."

Westwood, MA

"I wanted to take a moment to thank you for the attention you gave me last week. My son was started on antibiotics and ear drops. Within 24 hours he began to feel better. The poor kid had been going to school in tears because he was afraid of missing any more days, but feeling (and looking) just awful! He's not been able to even think about lacrosse practice, but thanks to starting him on antibiotics, he was thrilled to return to practice today."

Somers, NY