It’s that time of year again.
It might be time to buy some bug spray. Multiple confirmed cases of the West Nile virus in Ontario have been reported this month. The infected mosquitoes have been spotted in three different regions so far.
According to The Weather Network, we’re in the season where this virus starts to re-emerge in the province.
Unfortunately, it’s another health concern that Ontarians will have to stay aware of this summer.
So far, three cases have been reported on July 27.
The regions with infected mosquitoes include Peterborough, St. Catharines and Winsdor-Essex, TWN reports.
Although it rarely causes death, symptoms of the West Nile virus are pretty uncomfortable.
According to Infection Prevention and Control Canada (IPAC), you can expect to get a fever, along with a headache and body aches.
Nausea, rashes and vomiting can also ensue, and in extreme cases, even brain inflammation.
The symptoms usually last about three to six days, but the incubation period can be anywhere from three to 14 days, IPAC states.
Bug spray with DEET has been considered one of the most effective ways to repel the pesky bugs, according to GDG Environment.
The virus is transmitted to humans through mosquitoes who have fed on an infected bird.
However, it’s also been found in horses and bears.
Daily protective measures would include avoiding feeding hours, such as dusk and dawn, or covering up if you must be outside at these times.
Letting stagnant water sit around is always a no-no. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in still water and you could be creating a breeding ground if you don’t take precautions.
You might even consider investing in some mosquito netting for your balcony.
According to official data, some years are drastically worse than others when it comes to case counts.
For example, there were only 37 confirmed cases of West Nile virus in Canada in 2019, compared to 367 in 2018, IPAC records show.