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Area residents warned about mosquito-borne viruses following rain

Symptoms of West Nile virus include fever, headache, body aches, a skin rash and swollen lymph glands. Symptoms usually appear two to 14 days after being bit by an infected mosquito. (Thinkstock)

WASHINGTON — After several days of rain, area health officials are warning residents about the risk of disease carried by mosquitoes.

In Virginia, the Prince William Health District is reminding everyone the insects can carry diseases such as zika and West Nile virus. In Maryland, Riverdale Park and Prince George’s County, have reported their first case of West Nile this year, and officials across the state are reminding residents to empty standing water to stop mosquitoes from breeding.

The Prince William Health District campaign is also advising everyone to tip, toss and cover:

  • Tip containers such as flower pots and garbage cans
  • Toss unwanted items that could collect water
  • Cover yourself with insect repellent or long clothing

“Most of the mosquito species that carry disease breed in standing water within a few hundred feet of homes, especially after the recent heavy rains,” said Dr. Alison Ansher, director of the Prince William Health District. “Taking steps to prevent mosquito breeding around the home is the most effective way to reduce the risk of bites.”


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